by NUR HANANI AZMAN / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL
MANY retail investors in listed companies lack the knowledge of their rights and role they can play in the companies they have invested their hard-earned money in.
To help improve their knowledge and empower them, the Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) has released an AGM corporate governance (CG) checklist with the aim to promote more meaningful dialogues between shareholders and the board of directors at general meetings.
The AGM CG checklist is developed in collaboration with the Institutional Investors Council Malaysia and Minority Shareholders Watch Group.
SC chairman Datuk Syed Zaid Albar Syed Jaffar Albar (picture) said shareholders can play an important role in driving responsible corporate behaviour, and the AGM is one of the platforms where they can raise material issues for discussion or seek explanation from the company’s board and management.
“The AGM CG checklist is meant to guide shareholders on key issues they may need to consider or raise at an AGM before they exercise their voting rights. These relate primarily to resolutions commonly tabled at AGMs such as the appointment of directors, approval of directors’ fees and the appointment of auditors.
“It also reminds shareholders to engage boards on other critical issues including sustainability and anti-corruption measures,” he said in a statement yesterday.
Company general meetings are important platforms for directors and senior management to engage with shareholders to facilitate greater understanding of the company’s business, governance and performance.
Thus, the intended outcome of Practice 12 of the Malaysian Code on CG is that shareholders are able to participate, engage the board and senior management effectively and make informed voting decisions at general meetings.
While the AGM CG checklist is developed for shareholders, stakeholders such as consumers and potential investors are encouraged to use the checklist to understand and evaluate the performance, policies and practices of companies.
The publication of the AGM CG checklist is one of the deliverables under the SC’s Corporate Governance Strategic Priorities (2017-2020).
The checklist provides the public and shareholders of what are their rights as shareholders and what are they entitled to get before and after an AGM.
For those interested to know more about the checklist, it can be downloaded from SC’s website.