Sgx, Reıts

Sgx, Reıts

Governance index leaps to new high, but still room for improvement

Governance index leaps to new high, but still room for improvement

5/8/2020 2:25:00 AM

Governance index leaps to new high, but still room for improvement

THE Singapore Governance and Transparency Index (SGTI) 2020 surged to a record high, but two crucial components - accountability and audit as well as disclosure and transparency - have been falling and warrant concern, as industry players see an even greater need for governance to survive the Covid-19 turmoil. Read more at The Business Times.

Tell us what you think. Email us is still a tendency for some companies to act according to the letter of the law, rather than its spirit, resulting in tardy and vague disclosures. All stakeholders, especially management, need to respect the roles of other stakeholders and"to see them as partners rather than as a necessary cost for doing business", Mr Tan said.

3 community cases, including 2 fully vaccinated linked to new Changi Airport cluster Commentary: Does Singapore have to resort to 'slapstick and Singlish' to get public messages across? PM Lee Hsien Loong, other ministers speak out against racism after alleged attack

The SGTI, which assesses companies on corporate governance disclosure and practices as well as the timeliness, accessibility and transparency of their financial results announcements, hit a record high of 67.9 points this year against 59.3 points last year, in the general category assessing 577 listed companies.

The 45 real estate investment trusts (Reit) and business trusts, on average, achieved a higher score of 84.8, partly due to additional regulatory requirements. The SGTI is a joint initiative of CPA Australia, NUS Business School's Centre for Governance, Institutions and Organisations (CGIO), and Singapore Institute of Directors. The Business Times is the strategic media partner.

Within the general category, companies showed improvements in scores on shareholders' rights, board responsibilities and stakeholders' engagement. But the percentage score for accountability and audit fell to 73 per cent from 76 per cent previously, while disclosure and transparency dipped to 57 per cent from 58 per cent a year ago.

The percentage score for disclosure of key risks and risk management strategies fell to 24 per cent this year from 33 per cent three years ago and 31 per cent last year. Disclosure of risk tolerance policy fell to 5 per cent from 8 per cent last year. Linking risk management with remuneration also needed to be addressed.

The disclosure of name and relationship for each related party transaction has been falling, from 57 per cent three years ago to 42 per cent this year. Disclosure of the nature and value of each significant related party transaction was also on a decline from 52 per cent three years ago to 38 per cent this year.

In a panel discussion following the unveiling of the findings, Chaly Mah, former chief executive of Deloitte Southeast Asia and chairman of Deloitte Singapore, said many companies have found their business continuity plans do not work in a pandemic environment.

PM Lee and several ministers speak out against alleged racist attack on woman at Choa Chu Kang Drive US business lobby calls on China to play fair, warns of consumer boycott danger WHO chief Tedros says focusing on pandemic when asked about second term

"This is where the board plays a very important role. Because of its governance role, the board has to ask all the difficult questions to management around cost management, conservation of cash... the physical and mental health and safety of your people and whether the business model will survive post-Covid," Mr Mah said.

Beh Siew Kim, chief executive of Ascott Residence Trust's managers, said that during these challenging times for the hospitality sector, environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues may be slighted, but"the governance part is vital for us to come out of the Covid-19".

Lee Wai Fai, group chief financial officer at UOB, shared that interactions with the board are"very frequent now" and the board is in constant dialogue with investors, including those in the US, on what the bank is doing and where it sees the areas of high risks, especially when the government relief is eventually removed. Frequent communication is also extended to staff, to ease concerns over job security and retrenchments.

Mr Lee said there is a need to look at disclosure more holistically, rather than in a siloed manner.Sustainability was another key topic the panel focused on, with many agreeing that it is no longer an agenda driven by regulators, but an embedded practice driven by the market as global funds go green.

UOB's Mr Lee shared that four years ago, the bank was not ready for sustainability reporting, and generated two pages on the topic in its annual report. Today, it makes up 66 pages."It's a journey," he said, adding that these days when he makes presentations to investors, he has to allocate up to an hour on sustainability."We have moved from four years ago, doing what SGX said to do, to now embedding these practices."

Read more: The Business Times »

2 influencers face deportation from Bali over painted-on face mask prank

Singapore governance and transparency index hits new highDESPITE challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, Singapore-listed companies charted a new record in governance and transparency this year. Read more at The Business Times.

New High Court judge Dedar Singh Gill sworn inSINGAPORE - New High Court judge Dedar Singh Gill was sworn in by President Halimah Yacob at the Istana on Monday (Aug 3).. Read more at

Hong Kong reports 80 new COVID-19 cases, slight drop from previous highsHONG KONG: Hong Kong reported 80 new COVID-19 cases on Monday (Aug 3), dropping below 100 infections for the first time in 12 days, as a team of ...

Hong Kong reports 80 new coronavirus cases, slight drop from previous highsHONG KONG (REUTERS) - Hong Kong reported 80 new coronavirus cases on Monday (Aug 3), dropping below 100 infections for the first time in 12 days, as a team of Chinese officials began preparations for widespread testing in the global financial hub, which has seen a resurgence in cases.. Read more at

Sats, CapitaLand Reits top Singapore-listed companies in governance and transparencySINGAPORE - The corporate governance standard of Singapore listed companies reached a new high this year despite challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, with Sats and CapitaLand Commercial Trust topping their respective rankings in an index released on Tuesday (Aug 4).. Read more at

Golf: Woods ready for leap into unknown at fan-free majorSAN FRANCISCO (AFP) - Tiger Woods is preparing for a journey into the unknown as he heads into this week's PGA Championship hunting for a 16th major championship against the surreal backdrop of a deserted course at TPC Harding Park.. Read more at