Bursa Malaysia Launches ESG Transformation Guidebook For PLC’s

Bursa Malaysia Berhad launched its second guidebook from a series of 5 for public listed companies’ transformation to be more sustainable, socially responsible, and ethical.

Highlights from Guidebook emphasises the need for PLCs to develop a well-defined ESG approach including putting in place better governance, and more effective management of environmental and social performance through embedding robust ESG practices across key functions of the organisation.

“Developing a comprehensive and robust ESG response is becoming increasingly crucial to enhance business resilience, and viewed as an important catalyst for long-term value creation,” said Tan Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, Chairman of Bursa Malaysia.

Studies have shown that ESG-focused companies outperform their peers in the market, and are more resilient during economic downturns. Investors, lenders, and rating agencies are therefore increasingly expecting greater visibility of a company’s non-financial performance. ESG has become a critical component of investment decision-making.

“PLCs need to address critical ESG concerns that materially impact their business operations as well as longer-term prosperity. Critical areas of focus include addressing material climate-related risks and managing key environmental or social impacts such as human rights and labour practices. There is a pressing need to also reinforce accountability among
senior management and directors,” said Datuk Muhamad Umar Swift, CEO of Bursa Malaysia.

“The Exchange is only as good as the products or companies that are listed on it. These days, investors view the companies beyond their market and intrinsic financial value. Failure to meet ESG compliance results in reputational damage that can be detrimental to a company’s credibility” observed Datuk Umar Swift.

“Guidebook 2 of the PLC Transformation Programme serves as a useful aid for companies in enhancing ESG best practices across the organisation. The Exchange strongly encourages PLCs to reflect upon, and step up their adoption of the best practices espoused in the series of guidebooks, which is reflective of the emerging expectations from stakeholders,” urged
Tan Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, Chairman of Bursa Malaysia.

The objective of the PLC Transformation Programme is to help raise the stature of Corporate Malaysia and increase the attractiveness of public listed companies (PLCs) in Malaysia.

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