The fourth meeting of the OECD-Southeast Asia Corporate Governance Initiative, aiming to raise private company executives’ awareness of corporate governance, kicked off on Tuesday.
The event in Phnom Penh was hosted by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Cambodia (SECC) in collaboration with the OECD and with the support of the Japanese government.
The meeting aimed also to identify key policy options for Cambodian authorities to spur capital market development and enhance the country’s attractiveness to foreign investment.
The initiative was developed to support the development of a vibrant and healthy capital market through the advancement of corporate governance standards in the region.
Recognizing the specific reform needs of Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam arising from their stage in economic development, this initiative focuses on these countries.
Sou Socheat, SECC director-general, said corporate governance is very important for private as well as public institutions.
Mr. Socheat said good corporate governance could transform a family business into a public company with many shareholders.
“Corporate governance is the backbone which pushes one company to grow step-by-step with sustainability from one generation to generation.
“It must have a proper system, effectiveness, transparency, and accountability,” he said.
Mr. Socheat said corporate governance serves not only companies listed on the SECC. Other companies must also implement corporate governance as the core of management.
“Corporate governance is to set a system for each company without relying solely on an individual or group of people,” he added.
Economy and Finance Secretary of State Chou Kim Leng said the initiative was established in the context of supporting the development of a sustainable capital market to make corporate governance in the region comply with common international standards.
It was set up also to respond to the demand for reform under the corporate governance implementation framework in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam – the so-called CLMV countries.
“This forum will seek the solutions for all challenges involved with the implementation of corporate governance in CLMV by collecting ideas and experiences from relevant stakeholders to share in the forum,” Mr. Kim Leng said.
Mr. Kim Leng said that the implementation of corporate governance was not widespread in Cambodia.
Therefore the government had strengthened the implementation of corporate governance by issuing regulations regarding the Law of Commercial Enterprise, the Law of Accounting and Auditing, and the Law on Issuance and Trading, which are the foundations to pave the way to implement corporate governance for private sector in Cambodia, he said.
Masato Kanda, deputy commissioner of the OECD Corporate Governance Committee, said that the main thing for corporate governance is to push economic growth and social inclusion.
“To achieve all of these we have to build trust, transparency and accountability. Only when we have these can the system for corporate governance be put in place.”
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