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TITLE: Speech by Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani, Minister Of Finance II, at National Annual Corporate Report Awards (NACRA) Awards Presentation Ceremony 2017

DATE: 23/11/2017

SPEECH BY

YB DATUK SERI JOHARI ABDUL GHANI

MINISTER OF FINANCE II

NATIONAL ANNUAL CORPORATE REPORT AWARDS (NACRA)

AWARDS PRESENTATION CEREMONY 2017

NOVEMBER 23, 2017, KUALA LUMPUR

  • Yang Berbahagia Datuk Seri Tajuddin Atan
    Chief Executive Officer, Bursa Malaysia Berhad
  • Yang Berbahagia En Salihin bin Abang
    President, Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA)
  • Yang Berbahagia Datuk Tan Theng Hooi
    President, The Malaysian Institute of Certified Public Accountants (MICPA)
  • En Ahmad Zahirudin Abdul Rahim
    Chairman, NACRA 2017 Organising Committee
  • Ms Loh Lay Choon
    Chairperson of NACRA 2017 Adjudication Committee
  • Yang Berbahagia Tan Sri-Tan Sri, Puan Sri-Puan Sri, Datuk-Datuk and Datin-Datin
  • Participating Organisations
  • NACRA Committee Members and Adjudicators
  • Distinguished Guests
  • Members of the Media
  • Ladies and Gentlemen

INTRODUCTION

1. I am deeply honored and privileged to stand before you tonight to commemorate the National Annual Corporate Report Awards or NACRA 2017 with all of you. Allow me to record my heartfelt appreciation for making tonight’s occasion the success as it apparently is. A commendation is highly deserved to The Malaysian Institute of Certified Public Accountants (MICPA), Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA), Bursa Malaysia and the supporting teams for spearheading as well as making this great occasion a memorable one.

GLOBAL AND DOMESTIC ECONOMIC OUTLOOK

Ladies and gentlemen,

2. Global economic activity is projected to pick up pace in 2017 onwards. Higher global growth of 3.6% is forecasted for 2017 and 3.7% for 2018, driven by both advanced and emerging economies, amid recovery in investment and trade activities. As global growth is becoming more synchronized across countries, IMF estimates that emerging economies to contribute a sizable chunk of 76% to global growth this year.

3. I wish to share that the Malaysian economy continues to expand further, registering a growth rate of 6.2% for the third quarter of this year. For this year as a whole, given the strong growth in the first half of this year, as of October, the World Bank projected the economy to grow by 5.2%, well above the growth rate of 4.2% recorded in 2016. For 2018, growth momentum will continue, and the economy is projected to expand further in the range of 5% to 5.5%, supported by improving global economic conditions.

4. Robust growth performance of the Malaysian economy are testaments to the solid foundations and the resilience of the nation, which accorded us the flexibility and strength to rapidly rebound from any economic hardship.

ROBUST CAPITAL MARKET AS THE KEY THRUST OF THE ECONOMY

Ladies and gentlemen,

5. The well-functioning of our economy is predominantly supported by the breadth and the depth our financial system. Indeed, Malaysia’s financial system has been transformed from a banking-based sector into one that is highly diversified with greater market orientation. Today, capital market intermediaries and Non-Bank Financial Institutions equally play substantial roles alongside banking intermediaries in the increasingly integrated Malaysia’s financial system.

6. As of September 2017, the size of our financial system is recorded at RM 5.6 trillion, or 430% of our GDP with banking assets amounting to RM 2.5 trillion (45% of the financial system), stock market capitalization stands at RM 1.8 trillion (32% of the financial system) and bond market outstanding is at RM 1.3 trillion (23% of the financial system).

Ladies and gentlemen,

7. The bedrock of our capital market is high quality financial information and corporate reporting, which are crucial for investors in making informed investment decisions. It builds investor’s confidence which in turn, facilitates business development, contributes to job growth and leads to economic prosperity of the nation.

8. In this regards, Bursa in its commitment towards maintaining high standards of our market, have over the years continually evaluated their regulations to ensure that they remain relevant, effective and benchmarked to international standards, especially due to the ever-changing capital markets landscape. The aim for this continuous process is rather straightforward. We want to ensure the quality of our PLCs, provide the highest standard of investor protection and ensure that good business conduct are observed and practiced at all time.

9. Indeed, we live in a highly competitive global business environment and we need to evolve in the way we manage our businesses to ensure that we continue to stay relevant and profitable. The production of annual reports is also an important element of this, as it provides reliable, adequate and relevant information emphasizing the organization’s commitment to promote transparency, good governance and corporate accountability. In this respect, NACRA is aimed at promoting greater and more effective communication of financial and business information through the publication of timely, informative, factual and reader-friendly annual reports.

ACCOUNTABILITY AND TRANSPARENCY- FINANCIAL INFORMATION AND BEYOND

Ladies and gentlemen,

10. In current era, investors do not solely look at the financial aspects of an organization when making investment decisions. They also review the non-financial aspects, such as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) or Corporate Sustainability, that includes elements of inclusivity and diversity. I have been made to understand, that in keeping with Bursa’s listing requirement to include a Sustainability Statement in annual reports of listed issuers, the NACRA Committee have decided to replace the Corporate Social Responsibility Reporting Award with the new Sustainability Reporting Award for this year. This is indeed an encouraging move and I personally welcome this development.

11. Despite the fact that the requirement to include a Sustainability Statement will only be fully implemented for all listed issuers’ annual reports on December 31, 2018 onwards, it is best to have a head start in complying with the requirements prior to the implementation date. In addition, I have been told that NACRA has introduced a new award category this year for Integrated Reporting (IR). Truly, Integrated Reporting (IR) is the next wave of corporate reporting and I encourage all organizations to embrace it. I believe the heightened expectation and standard in the reporting of annual report will be a new cornerstone that will enhance our continuous efforts in corporate governance.

CONCLUDING REMARK

Ladies and gentlemen,

12. Today, we live in a highly competitive and briskly-evolving global business environment. I wish to commend all stakeholders’ effort, particularly Bursa Malaysia, MIA and MICPA in ensuring our standard of annual corporate reporting remained on par with the evolving sophitication of the capital market. Truly, this bold move will propel our economy to a greater height. On that note, I applaud the organizing committee and I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the organizers and participants towards ensuring merit and distinctions in annual corporate reporting in Malaysia.

May the best organizations win! Thank you.