The Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) today released its inaugural Corporate Governance Monitor (CG Monitor) which highlighted positive levels of adoption for a majority of the practices recommended in the Malaysian Code on Corporate Governance (MCCG) with improvement opportunities in the quality of disclosures.
Minister of Finance Lim Guan Eng said “We have seen progress in the area of gender diversity on boards, with Malaysia recording a seven-percentage point increase in women participation on boards of the Top 100 listed companies from 16.6% in 2016 to 23.68% in 2018. Women also account for 28% of senior management positions for all listed companies, higher than the Asia Pacific average of 23%.”
“I’m encouraged by the fact that since February 2019, there are no more all-male boards for our Top 100 listed companies, and this indeed sets the tone for other PLCs to follow. I would like to congratulate the SC on the first edition of this report and we look forward to future editions.”
Apart from the encouraging progress in greater women participation on boards, Chairman of the SC, Datuk Syed Zaid Albar, said that among the 36 best practices outlined in the MCCG, 27 had an adoption level of over 70%.
“In fact, mid and small cap companies are among the trailblazers in the adoption of the CG best practices. Many of them have put in place good CG practices such as disclosing remuneration of senior management, introducing a 9-year tenure limit for independent directors and having a wholly independent audit committee.”
“This shows that we are moving towards the right direction with greater appreciation of the value of adopting good CG practices, even among the smaller companies,” he added.
The release of the CG Monitor was made possible by leveraging advanced analytics in line with the SC’s Corporate Governance Priorities (2017-2020). This has enabled the SC to have greater insights into the progress made and challenges faced by listed companies in implementing corporate governance best practices.
These observations will inform future policy recommendations and interventions in promoting corporate governance in Malaysia.
The CG Monitor 2019 presents observations on three thematic reviews on long-serving independent directors (policies and practices), gender diversity on boards and CEO remuneration of the top 100 listed companies.
This year, the SC will review the anti-corruption measures of listed companies as part of its effort to implement the National Anti-Corruption Plan, which identified corporate governance as one of the six priority areas. Findings of the review will be released in the 2020 edition of the CG Monitor.