Final Word from Monday, April 15, 2019



Czechs throw the word "director" around so often that it's hard to explain to any of them not in international business what an "independent director" is. It's a member of the board of directors of a public company who doesn't have a material relationship with the company or its owners. The idea is that such a board member should have outside experience and use it to the benefit of all of the company's shareholders, not just a select group of them. If anyone in Czech politics should get this, it's the Pirates. They promise greater transparency on the part of public institutions and stress that this is the way to reduce corruption. Yet when it comes to implementation, the Pirates are just like other political parties. They put their own interests first, and not those of, say, the municipal owner of Pražská plynárenská gas company. Perhaps it's impossible to find truly independent directors in the small Czech pond. If so, the Pirates should openly admit it. In the interest of transparency, of course. [ Czech Republic natural gas city of Prague independence ]

Glossary of difficult words

to throw around (a word or phrase) - to use frequently;

material relationship - a relationship which could, in the view of a corporation’s board, be reasonably expected to interfere with the exercise of a directors independent judgment;

to get it - to understand something.

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