Any company that does not put risk management at the centre of its agenda is jeopardising shareholder value and may fail to meet strategic objectives.

The claim comes from Nigel Turnbull who is chairman of the current Working Party examining corporate governance. Turnbull said that managing risk was not about saving money but about enhancing business performance.

Speaking at an Association of Insurance and Risk Managers meeting in London this week he said: "Whilst the automatic reaction of people to the word 'risk' is the need to reduce it, in many businesses a more important key risk could easily be the failure to do something, for example to produce a new product on time or widen the customer base or prepare for e-commerce."