18 SEPTEMBER 2002
Malta Stock Exchange Chairman Alfred Mallia this week declared the Mediterranean Corporate Governance Roundtable (MCGRT) "officially launched", following the Roundtables first meeting on Monday.
Addressing a press conference, Finance Minister John Dalli welcomed the initiative and pointed out that it is in line with the philosophy of the OECD and the World Bank, both of which support the setting up of regional roundtable on corporate governance.
Mr Mallia explained how following the introduction of the 'Code of Principles of Good Corporate Governance' the Malta Stock Exchange was invited to become a founder member of the European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI).
In view of the fact that the Mediterranean Region offers certain special features particular to the region Mr Mallia, took the initiative, with the backing of ECGI, to propose the setting up of MCGRT, which will aim to promote and improve corporate governance in emerging markets.
MCGRTs main thrust will obviously be on the Mediterranean region, with its different cultures and backgrounds and with its particular reference to the role of family owned and family run businesses and also within the context of developing markets.
These aims are expected to be achieved through the undertaking of various initiatives including the commissioning of independent studies on Corporate Governance, organising international conferences in order to bring together academics and practitioners working in the field. MCGRT will be applying to the EU to fund these studies.
While academics from neighbouring countries are being approached to sit on the MCGRT Council, the Council currently includes Dr Shahira Abdel Shahid, Director of Research and Markets development at the Cairo & Alexandria Stock Exchanges, Dr Melsa Ararat, Network Faculty Member, Sabanci University Istanbul, Prof Lena Tsipouri, University of Athens, and Mr P Barrett, a Director of ODLHK - a company in Hong Kong dealing with Corporate Governance.
Membership of the MCGRT is open to individuals, corporations and institutions. Mr Mallia has been appointed the first Chairman of MCGRT, Dr Shahira Abdel Shahid, Deputy Chairman and Mr P J Spiteri, Secretary. Meanwhile, local members include Prof J V Bannister, Dr Arthur Galea Salamone, Dr Donatienne Gatt and James Satariano.
An Executive Committee, which has been given all the powers necessary to pursue the MCGRTs objectives, has also been set up under Mr Mallias Chairmanship.