In recognition of the growing importance of corporate governance in attracting investments and investors, delegates from across the globe gathered for ICGN’s Annual Conference 2017, organised by ICGN, and hosted by Kumpulan Wang Persaraan (Diperbadankan) [KWAP] in premier partnership with the Minority Shareholder Watchdog Group (MSWG). Over 350 senior capital market professionals from all regions of the world gathered to explore governance priorities in major Asian markets and achieve value creation through sustainable long-term practices.

The conference featured speakers from renowned corporate governance champions including: Khazanah Nasional Berhad, Employees Provident Fund (EPF), VCAP Asset Managers, Securities Commission Malaysia, CIMB Group, Australian Council of Superannuation Investors, California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), Korea Corporate Governance Services, Japan’s Pension Fund Association, United States of America’s Council of Institutional Investors, and Australia’s AMP Capital.

The agenda included a range of engaging and diverse sessions in which delegates examined best practice in relation to investor stewardship obligations, policies and processes to enhance overall financial market stability and economic growth.

Present at the annual conference, Executive Director of ICGN, Kerrie Warring said, “We welcome the many positive developments taking place to promote high standards of corporate governance including the publication of the Malaysian Code for Institutional Investors in 2014 and  this year’s Malaysian Code of Corporate Governance. There is a sense of real commitment to improve standards driven by organisations such as the Institutional Investor Council and MSWG as well as champions from the investment and business communities themselves – many of whom are present at our meeting. At a time when there is so much political uncertainty in major markets around the world it is encouraging to see clear determination in Malaysia to drive governance reform.”

Representing the host country, CEO of KWAP, Dato’ Wan Kamaruzaman Wan Ahmad (pic) said, “As at end May 2017, foreign holdings in the Malaysian capital market stood at 27.1% for local equity market, the highest level of holding since January 2013. Meanwhile RM 195.1 billion for debt securities and Sukuk was recorded recently, which in the month of May 2017 marked the second consecutive monthly increase in foreign holdings this year. The substantial amount is a reflection of the confidence that foreign investors have on our capital market, made possible through sound implementation of corporate governance in all facets of our economy and conduct.”

“Crucial social elements such as the fair distribution of wealth, equal opportunities across gender and race, and fair treatment of workers will only be achieved via good governance. Through continuous open dialogue and knowledge-sharing made possible by hosting international corporate governance events like this, there will be greater international awareness on the benefits of investing in Malaysia not only for the short term but for the longer-sustainable term,” remarked Dato’ Wan Kamaruzaman.

Malaysia’s recent corporate governance and stewardship developments have been promoted through a mix of government driven reforms, signalling to the global institutional investment community that Malaysia is becoming a progressive investment hub. The conference shined the spotlight directly on number of Malaysia’s public listed companies including: Johor Corporation (JCorp), AmBank Group, Westport Holdings, and Bursa Malaysia, who shared their respective governance and sustainability practices.

As a long standing ICGN member and the premier partner of the conference, MSWG protects the interests of minority shareholders through shareholder activism by encouraging good governance amongst public listed companies. Together with KWAP, greater awareness is placed on governance, and the agenda of good corporate governance is heightened and encouraged, and emulated in more organisations in Malaysia.

The three day conference opened a meaningful dialogue between investors and companies from around the globe, delegates delved deeper into all aspects of corporate governance, from pragmatic approaches that incorporate an assessment of a company’s governance and sustainability credentials, to sustaining high returns and resisting competitive pressures to adhere to unwavering compliance in addressing board composition.

Source: Media Release


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