The Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants (HKICPA) calls for substantial improvements in corporate governance in Hong Kong, including the creation of a high-level policy unit by the government, the strengthening of the role of non-executive independent directions to hold corporate boards accountable, and bringing more board actions into the enforcement regime of Securities and Futures Ordinance.
The recommendations were made after an extensive study in key markets, said HKICPA.
“Hong Kong has largely kept up with international developments over the past two decades,” said Wong Kim Man, convenor of the HKICPA Corporate Governance Working Group. “However, incremental and reactive changes are no longer enough for Hong Kong to stay ahead as a global player.
He added that the government must take the lead in instigating significant changes in some fundamental areas if Hong Kong is to stay ahead as a competitive and well-regulated international hub that balances the needs of business development and investor protection.
While the study, carried out by Syren Johnstone and Say H. Goo of Asian Institute of International Financial Law at University of Hong Kong makes multiple recommendations, the HKICPA said those related to corporate governance architecture and policy, the board, and enforcement should receive more attention for Hong Kong to enhance its attractiveness to investors.