Emerging market regulators seek to strengthen corporate governance

The Growth and Emerging Markets (GEM) Committee of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) has published a report that seeks to strengthen corporate governance frameworks.

The Report on Corporate Governance in Emerging Markets identifies possible measures and regulatory approaches aimed at strengthening corporate governance in emerging market jurisdictions and aligning regulatory frameworks with internationally recognized standards in this area. The Report is the first review of its kind by securities regulators on current corporate governance practices in emerging markets benchmarked against the revised G20/OECD Principles of Corporate Governance.

Ranjit Ajit Singh, Vice Chair of the IOSCO Board and Chair of the Growth and Emerging Markets Committee, said:

The Report is an important and timely assessment of the progress of emerging markets in aligning their regulatory frameworks and practices with global standards. It makes useful recommendations to address issues associated with corporate governance in emerging markets. It also demonstrates the commitment by emerging market regulators to enhance corporate governance standards and reinforce resilience in their markets.”

Leonardo Pereira, Executive Chairman of CVM Brazil and Chair of the Task Force that conducted the work, added:

Securities regulators face, on a daily basis, problems that could be avoided or mitigated by the practical implementation of corporate governance principles and standards. In this sense, I expect the report to be a concrete opportunity for securities regulators to consider possible ways for improvements in their regulatory frameworks, favoring sounder conduct standards and more effective governance structures.”

The Report focuses on three key areas:

  • board composition and responsibility;
  • remuneration and incentive structures;
  • and risk management and internal controls.

The Report is based on a comprehensive survey across regulators, exchanges, listed companies, institutional investors and other stakeholders on corporate governance practices in emerging market jurisdictions.

The Report reflects that the regulatory frameworks in emerging market jurisdictions are generally aligned with the recommendations of the OECD Principles. There is also broad agreement on the
direction emerging market regulators should take to improve the quality and accountability of boards, ensure that remuneration and incentive structures are designed to create long term value, and improve the risk management frameworks and internal controls of corporations.

In addition, the Report also identifies further initiatives and approaches for raising the bar regarding the implementation of best corporate governance practices, including encouraging greater board diversity and quality reporting of sustainability, social responsibility and cyber risks.

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