The FINANCIAL — IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is hosting a two-day corporate governance workshop to update regional media on effective practices among public companies. Two dozen business editors and reporters from Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mongolia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam are attending the workshop in Bangkok today. Key corporate governance issues discussed include company structure, board leadership, risk management, and environmental and social standards.
“Having a deeper understanding of what constitutes good and bad corporate governance practices will improve journalists’ ability to spot red flags and uncover stories that are of public importance,” said Chris Razook, IFC Corporate Governance Lead for East Asia and the Pacific. “The media can help champion transparency and accountability in public companies. Well-run companies are more profitable, sustainable and able to attract more foreign investment.”
Last year’s establishment of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Economic Community is expected to boost economic integration in the region. Companies in ASEAN countries have an urgent need to improve market transparency and corporate governance practices to raise their performance and competitiveness, according to IFC.
IFC is also meeting with representatives from the China Securities Regulatory Commission and stock exchanges in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Shenzhen to discuss the challenges of promoting good corporate governance in their home markets.
“Corporate governance reform has been at the top of the agenda for both regulators and companies in Vietnam recently as businesses are seeking to improve their competitiveness amid closer economic integration in the region,” said Nguyen Vu Quang Trung, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Hanoi Stock Exchange in Vietnam. “We appreciate knowledge-sharing opportunities with IFC and regional peers to catch up on new developments in corporate governance and discuss further collaboration.”
IFC works with the private sector in developing countries to build sustainable businesses. IFC’s East Asia Pacific Corporate Governance Program helps businesses to adopt good practices and standards to mitigate risk, prevent mismanagement, and attract the investment and capital needed to fuel their growth. The program is delivered in partnership with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs of Switzerland, and the U.K. Department for International Development.