Company Secretary Forum in Dubai
Marcus Evans Company Secretary Forum which will be held on the 15th to 16th September 2014 in Dubai, UAE focuses on the future role of company secretary, board of director’s assessment and continuous board training.
This new conference program comprises of a selected grouping of contemporary topics specifically designed for company secretaries such as Board of Director’s Assessment, Continuous Board Training, Board Induction as well as Governance, Risk and Compliance. The conference framework has been structured to enhance your knowledge and equip you with the skills to be a great advocator of corporate governance and integrity.
In an interview with Carina Wessels, President of Corporate Secretaries International Association of Africa, she says that good governance ultimately boils down to good management and the Company Secretary should enable and assist the board and management to achieve good governance by ensuring the right information reaches them so as to enable proper decision making that considers the company's long term sustainability and its impact on stakeholders.
During the two days conference, there will be a half day workshop on "Continuous Board Training and Evaluation” facilitated by David Buckle, Partner in DMB Law, UK and a “Boardroom Role Playing Session” along with a panel discussion on ‘Managing Dual Role of Company Secretary and General Counsel: Implication on Good Governance”, expert presentation and case studies.
Confirmed speakers include Professor Collin Coulson-Thomas, Director – General UK & Europe, Institute of Directors, India, John Tothill, Company Secretary of HSBC Middle East, UAE, Robert Ford, Gulf Steering Committee of ICSA Gulf, UAE, Vijay Ojha, Company Secretary, Sharaf Group, UAE, Carina Wessels, President, Corporate Secretaries International Association, South Africa, Yaman Samman, Company Secretary & Legal Counsel, Oman Oil Company Exploration and Production, Oman, Rima Hadid, Board Secretary and Senior Manager of Legal Affairs, Bahrain Mumtalakat Holding Company, Divya Kumat, VP – Legal and Company Secretary, Datamatics Global Services Ltd, India and Abdul Aziz Abdul Qadir, Director of Finance, Operations and Secretary to the Board, Sabre Travel Network, Bahrain.
This event is sponsored by Diligent, BoardVantage, Computershare Governance Services (CGS) and ICSA Software International.
Partners of the event are Corporate Secretaries International Association, UAEBusiness.com and AfricaBusiness.com.
About the Organiser
Marcus Evans is an international business events and information company with four main principle areas of business activity: Business Events, Business Training, Corporate Hospitality, Business Information & Market Research, Sports Franchise. Marcus Evans employs more than 3500 people in over 36 countries around the globe delivering intelligence and business products across a full range of commercial sectors, including Capital Markets, delivering intelligence and business products across a full range of commercial sectors, including Capital Markets, Life Sciences, Defence, Healthcare, Information technology and Legal.
DL: +603 2723 6757
April Chan's opening ceremony speech at the 9th China Corporate Governance Forum held in Shanghai on the 18th of December 2010:
Good morning, honourable Chairman Shang Fulin, Mayor Han Zheng, Mr. Meng Jianmin, Chairman Geng Liang, Mr. Richard Alan Boucher, ,distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
As a representative of the Corporate Secretaries International Association, it is my great hounour to be invited to speak at this 9th China Corporate Governance Forum. I thank you and appreciate the opportunity. I wish to extend my sincere congratulations and highest respect to all the corporate and individual winners of the 2010 Annual Awards for Best Board of Directors, Best Information Disclosure and Excellent Independent Director.
Today’s forum is a key event in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Chinese capital and securities markets. In December 20 years ago, the Shanghai and Shenzhen Stock Exchanges were established and marked the start of a new era for the Chinese capital market. After 20 years of navigation through challenging times, these Exchanges are now amongst the world’s largest securities markets in terms of market capitalisation. Corporate governance standards and practices have been increasingly applied in listed companies.
The history has demonstrated impressive growth toward the maturity of the capital markets as well as great success of China in becoming one of the most robust economies in the world.
The Shanghai Stock Exchange has made continuous efforts to strengthen the corporate governance of Chinese companies and has a proven track record in this area. An annual corporate governance forum has been organized since 2001, an Annual Report for Chinese Corporate Governance has been issued since 2003, China’s first Corporate Governance Index was established, a corporate governance section and related ETF products have been set up, and a series of professional training and follow-up tutorials for independent directors and board secretaries introduced.
The subprime loan crisis in the US and the subsequent world financial crisis in 2008 resulted from deficiencies in corporate governance. It is a common concern and challenge for all international companies to set up internal control procedures responsive to regulation, to allocate and balance power among Directors of the Board and to disclose sufficient information for better transparency. For all public companies, I believe a foundation of sound corporate governance stems from the effectiveness of the board of directors and independent directors, and from information disclosure practices. The three awards to be granted from the Shanghai Stock Exchange are strong evidence of support for the establishment of effective corporate governance. I would like to raise awareness of the importance of a Board Secretary in a company as she/he is responsible for corporate governance and information disclosure. The board secretary assumes similar responsibilities as the company secretary, both of whom are vital in ensuring good corporate governance.
Though corporate governance regulations differ in different legal systems, the concepts and practices amongst international companies are becoming increasingly more reflective of each other. Principles and practices developed in different countries are increasingly similar to each other, for example, internal control of listed companies after the financial crises, and regulation of the financial reports of listed companies. A new development is the regulators’ focus on the non-financial section of reporting – integrated reporting covering corporate social responsibility and environmental concerns. At the same time, the board secretary, who manages the operation of board, is assuming greater responsibility in implementing corporate governance practices. Hong Kong regulators are preparing consultation documents on the role of company secretary.
A McKinsey research shows that international institutional investors are willing to pay a 30 per cent premium to buy stock of companies with sound corporate governance. Research conducted by the Shanghai Stock Exchange yields a similar result regarding investment biases of Qualified Foreign Institutional Investors (QFII) when buying A-shares. However, it is hard to get an objective evaluation of corporate governance because different companies adopt different codes and standards. Furthermore, the person responsible for corporate governance at a public company in different securities markets may have different qualifications and responsibilities, and this hinders the co-ordinated development of corporate governance worldwide.
The Corporate Secretaries International Association (CSIA) was established in March of this year in Paris. The Hong Kong Institute of Chartered Secretaries was one of the founding members and it was my great honour to be the first elected President of the CSIA.
The CSIA represents approximately 70,000 governance professionals from more than 70 countries and territories globally. Full member organisations include national/territorial representative organisations from Hong Kong/China, Australia, India, the United Kingdom, South Africa, Kenya, Malaysia, Singapore, Zimbabwe, Nigeria and affiliated member organisations are from the United States, New Zealand and Sri-Lanka. CSIA’s mission is to develop and grow the study and practice of secretaryship and good governance and to support the professionalisation of corporate secretaryship internationally. CSIA released the publication “20 Practical Steps to Better Governance” to develop international corporate governance codes and is working with the World Trade Organisation to introduce a separate Head in the WTO’s Services Sectoral Classification List with a view to enhancing the recognition and qualification of corporate secretaries and governance professionals.
China’s Twelfth Five-year Plan has formulated the longer term objectives of reform and innovation in China’s financial system, as well as its international development. The theme of this forum is “Construction of the Blue-chip Stock” which manifests the vision of Shanghai is to become an international financial centre and to nurture world-class enterprises that can compete globally. A professional corporate secretary position is important for the advancement of China’s financial market, internal control mechanisms and the international expansion of enterprises. CSIA and The Hong Kong Institute of Chartered Secretaries are willing to work with Chinese regulators to contribute to the growth of Chinese capital markets. We are happy to offer our knowledge and experience in corporate governance practices, the professionalisation of board secretaries with international recognition, as well as training of corporate governance practitioners. CSIA sincerely wishes to work closely with all of you, share our information and extensive experience in corporate governance, contribute to China’s securities market and help train financial professionals.
Finally, I wish the Forum great success. Thank you everyone!
Shanghai Stock Exchange Forum Addressed by Corporate Secretaries International Association President
For immediate release - April Chan, President, Corporate Secretaries International Association (CSIA) addressed the opening ceremony of the 9th China Corporate Governance Forum, held in Shanghai on 18 December 2010.
The Forum was organised by Shanghai Stock Exchange to highlight and discuss corporate governance issues in China and was supported by the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council (SASAC) and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and was held to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Chinese capital and securities markets.
Other luminaries who addressed the Forum included Shang Fulin, Chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, Han Zheng, Mayor of Shanghai, Meng Jianmin, Vice Chairman of SASAC, Geng Liang, Chairman of the Shanghai Stock Exchange and Richard Alan Boucher, Deputy Secretary-General of the OECD.
CSIA was invited to participate in the Forum as the global organisation that represents those professionals, who work as frontline practitioners of governance such as corporate secretaries, to implement best practice in the governance of corporations.
"It was a great honour to be invited to address this Forum. It is through participating in such high level events that CSIA can raise its profile among Mainland China regulators and practitioners. This in turn helps CSIA to promote good governance and fulfil its mission as the global voice of corporate secretaries and governance professionals," said Mrs. Chan.
During her address April noted the achievements China has made in its capital market during the last 20 years. She also introduced CSIA and spoke of its desire to contribute to the professionalisation of the board secretary in China.
Prior to the Forum, CSIA Council Meeting was held on 13 December 2010. April Chan, as the President of The Hong Kong Institute of Chartered Secretaries, was elected as President of CSIA for a second term for 2011. Mrs. Chan is the current Company Secretary of CLP Holdings Limited.
"I was honoured to be asked to serve as CSIA President again and to contribute to the promotion of the professional status of Chartered /corporate/company and board secretaries globally," said April Chan. In the coming year, CSIA will focus on:
• Lobbying with the World Trade Organisation to introduce a separate Head in the Services Sectoral Classification List for corporate governance, compliance, and secretarial advisory professionals (CGCSA);
Working with the Global Corporate Governance Forum, a World Bank/ International Financial Corporation initiative to produce a Corporate Secretaries Toolkit for use in multiple jurisdictions. This will provide a baseline curriculum for the concepts and approaches that corporate secretaries must master to be effective in their roles; and
Staging CSIA's first Corporate Governance Conference in Shanghai during 2011. During the Council meeting the following new members joined CSIA:
The Institute of Certified Public Secretaries of Kenya (Full member)
The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators of Nigeria (Full member)
The Institute of Chartered Corporate Secretaries of Sri Lanka (Affiliated member)
Corporate Secretaries International Association Council 2011: Honorary Officers:
President - April W.Y. Chan (Hong Kong member representative)
Vice President - Vinayak S. Khanvalkar (India member representative) Secretary - Stephen Sadie (South Africa member representative) Treasurer - Peter Turnbull (Australia member representative)
Deacon M B Adeisa (Nigeria member representative) Janet Ang (Malaysia member representative)
Joe Mwangi Mbuthia (Kenya member representative) Pascal Mudzikisi (Zimbabwe member representative) Grace Tan (Singapore member representative) David Wilson (UK/Ireland member representative)
About Corporate Secretaries International Association
Corporate Secretaries International Association (CSIA) is dedicated to promoting the values and practices of governance professionals such as qualified Chartered Secretaries, corporate secretaries, company secretaries and board secretaries who are at the frontline of governance.
CSIA, a Geneva-registered trade body, was established in March 2010. It formed to give a global voice to corporate secretaries and governance professionals throughout the world. CSIA Member organisations include national/territorial representative organisations from Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, India, Kenya, Malaysia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Southern Africa, UK/Ireland, the US and Zimbabwe.
For press enquiries, please contact:
Tel: +852 2516 8008