Kuala Lumpur, 9 October 2014
Malaysia Records Higher Scores In Regional Corporate Governance Assessment  

Malaysia has strengthened its regional standing in corporate governance after recording higher scores in the biennial Corporate Governance Watch 2014 Report (CG Watch).

According to the report by the Asian Corporate Governance Association in collaboration with CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, Malaysia achieved an overall score of 58% in 2014 compared to 49% in 2007, maintaining its rank of fourth in the region. The report drew attention to the sustained and concerted efforts by Malaysia in driving governance reforms, resulting in Malaysia becoming the only market out of the Asia Pacific countries assessed that consistently improved its scores in each of the last four surveys. [1]

Areas of consistent improvement include corporate governance culture, rules and practices, enforcement, accounting and auditing. The progress in culture was attributed to the recently launched Malaysian Code for Institutional Investors, the first in ASEAN and second in emerging markets; voluntary poll voting by several companies and improved communication by corporate Malaysia. These outcomes resulted from the implementation of recommendations under the Corporate Governance Blueprint launched by the Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) in 2011.

Malaysia was also recognised for its strength in financial reporting and auditing standards, ranking equal first with Singapore in the category of accounting and auditing. The report further acknowledged the SC’s Audit Oversight Board as “one of the better organised and transparent audit regulators in the region”. Malaysia also showed commendable improvement in the area of enforcement with scores in this category rising by eight percentage points from the 2012 assessment.

The CG Watch was conducted over February to August 2014 by a team of research analysts, experts and consultants. A total of 944 companies across twelve Asia-Pacific nations were evaluated in various aspects of corporate governance.