The Taiwan Monthly

Feb. 2021

Corporate Governance

Investor Relations Forum held by TWSE arouses warm response

In order to help listed companies enhance the quality of dialogue with investors, show their value in the capital market and realize their vision of sustainable operation, the Taiwan Stock Exchange held an investor relations forum on January 13, 2021.

 

Pony Huang, TWSE Senior Vice President of the Corporate Governance Department said that, with the trend of responsible investment and the development of Stewardship Code in various countries, in order to fulfill their responsibilities, institutional investors at home and abroad have taken the initiative to communicate with listed companies to strengthen their sustainable operation capability, reduce ESG related risks, and to create maximum long-term value for both sides. Concurrently, listed companies are also facing more challenges with the increase of investor participation. The TWSE specially held this investor relations forum in order for listed companies to enhance the effectiveness of investor relations.

 

Celine Feng, Vice President of Alliance Advisors, spoked on the voting policies and trends of institutional investors, and explained that listed companies should properly identify investors, as well as understand different types of institutional investors. She also encouraged listed companies to establishgood investor communication channels, and regularly give feedback to institutional investors on the issues of their concern. This will help to ensure a solid shareholder relationship, and investors are more willing to support the company at critical moments. Ignoring the needs of institutional investors will cause institutional investors to vote against the proposals or abstain from voting at the shareholders' meeting, or even liquidate their shareholding and blacklist the company.

 

Katrina Chen, Manager of Taiwan Cement Corporation, pointed out that the company has transformed from a traditional cement company to a green environmental engineering company which regards ESG as the "golden ratio." Through active communication with ESG rating agencies, the company can understand the items that should be strengthened in its sustainable development. An ESG website and  ESG overview report were specifically established to enhance the integrity of information disclosure. Taiwan Cement also actively improves the environment and corporate governance for the risk management of sustainable operation, introduces ESG into the core of the enterprise, links the KPI for management with the sustainable performance, and establishes the ESG mindset for the whole company through training.

 

Karen Chen, Executive Director of MSCI, explained MSCI's ESG rating methodology, and how it enables listed companies to understand the ESG issues to which different industries need to pay attention. She also pointed out that, according to the latest information, 19% of MSCI Taiwan Index companies' ESG ratings have been upgraded from the previous year, and only 7% have been downgraded. Through years of big data observation, MSCI ESG rating has gradually won the attention of global enterprises. MSCI has also set up an enterprise communication platform to provide communication channels for listed companies.

 

Anne Pang, Managing Director of Think Alliance Group, shared that as the scale of responsible investment is growing rapidly both in the world and in Asia, if a listed company makes good use of the investor relationship function to demonstrate the company's ESG performance, it may take the opportunity to further enhance its value. She also pointed out that both investor relations and corporate governance share the same goal, and institutional investors’ active exercise of shareholder activism makes it necessary for listed companies to strengthen corporate governance to face the challenges of institutional investors.

 

A total of 150 speakers, chief financial officers and investor relations representatives of listed companies participated in this forum. The audience was keenly interactive and offered accolades on the Forum’s success. If you missed the forum, you may watch the video on the WebPro 3.0 website (https://webpro.twse.com.tw/webportal/vod/115/?categoryId=150). For relevant information of the forum, please refer to the advocacy activities webpage of the website of the Corporate Governance Center (https://cgc.twse.com.tw/promoteEvent/promoteEventArticleCh/673).

 

For further inquiries, please contact Mr. Yu at 1248@twse.com.tw