Pearl Initiative highlights the role of private sector in promoting integrity in corporate governance

Roundtable offered insights on how companies can practically apply transparency and accountability to fuel competitiveness and sustainable development

  
During the roundtable titled lsquo;The Changing Face of Business Integrity: A Kuwaiti Perspectiversquo;

During the roundtable titled ‘The Changing Face of Business Integrity: A Kuwaiti Perspective’

Kuwait:Pearl Initiative, a business-led non-profit organisation promoting a corporate culture of transparency and accountability across the Gulf Region’s Private Sector, held a roundtable in Kuwait City to raise awareness among Kuwait-based companies on the value of bolstering policies pertaining to transparency, ethics and risk management practices in business.

The event, titled ‘The Changing Face of Business Integrity: A Kuwaiti Perspective’ featured a panel of experts, while convening over 35 senior business professionals from compliance, audit, governance, legal and finance fields, who participated in the discussions.

Kuwait is taking commendable measures as part of the new Kuwait 2035 Vision, to promote business practices in line with international best practice standards and to drive sustainable development in the country. The roundtable, held against the backdrop of these new developments, underlined the need for the Private Sector to implement integrity-led corporate strategies by strengthening audit standards and other monitoring processes to protect shareholder value, boost investor confidence and investment flows, and ultimately, fuel entrepreneurship, economic growth and sustainable development.

Speakers on the panel included Ahmed Al Kiswani, Partner, PwC, Dr. Lee G. Caldwell, Associate Dean, American University of Kuwait and Eman M. Al Awadhi, Group Communications Director, KIPCO.

Panellists highlighted the rewards that private companies can reap from embracing integrity and ethics as a cornerstone of their business conduct and as a pillar of effective management, as opposed to pigeonholing these key corporate governance fundamentals as a matter reserved solely for compliance functions.

The panel also offered practical and actionable steps to implement integrity practices, citing real-life case studies of organisations who have tailored integrity strategies to suit their needs and improved their competitiveness and work environment as a result, while also ensuring business integrity practices become a unifying force among various stakeholders within their ecosystem.

Yasmine Omari, Executive Director, Pearl Initiative, stated: “Efficient and competitive companies help to ensure healthier markets and promote greater investor confidence. The Private Sector can promote greater integrity in business by adopting stronger internal controls, ethics and anti-corruption standards and by putting in place robust corporate governance systems, ensuring business dealings are conducted responsibly and transparently.”

The panel discussion concluded with a Q&A session that allowed the audience to engage with panel members to gain deeper insights into the topics explored.

The roundtable was held as part of the Pearl Initiative’s Anti-Corruption Best Practices programme, supported by the Siemens Integrity Initiative. As part of the programme, the Pearl Initiative has developed the Gulf Integrity Indicator as a free tool to gauge the level of integrity policies within an organisation. It is anticipated that by participating in the indicator exercise, organisations can benchmark their practices with regional practices, and identify areas for development.

Founded in 2010, the Pearl Initiative is a Gulf business–led non-profit organisation promoting a corporate culture of accountability and transparency as key drivers of competitiveness and sustainable economic growth across the Gulf Region. The organisation develops programmes and publishes regional research reports and case studies to promote the implementation of higher standards of corporate governance amongst business and student communities across the Gulf Region.

-Ends

About the Pearl Initiative

Established in 2010, the Pearl Initiative is the leading non-profit organisation by business and for business to collectively take the lead in adopting higher standards in corporate governance, accountability and transparency in order to enhance business innovation, opportunity and value creation in the Gulf Region. In 2019, the Pearl Initiative was awarded Special Consultative Status by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), making it the first private non-profit based in the UAE to be granted such status.

With over 40 regional and international partners, the Pearl Initiative brings together business, policy and civil society decision-makers to share best business practices and to help maximise the economic opportunities available to companies within the region. The Pearl Initiative also actively engages Gulf-based university students to identify and embrace strong ethics as they embark on their future careers.

The Pearl Initiative delivers programmes that foster greater insight and perspective of why corporate governance matters to business in the Gulf Region. It facilitates discussions on how to practically improve corporate governance practices, and to inspire both current and future business leaders to acknowledge the business case behind these principles and practices.

For more information, please visit www.pearlinitiative.org or contact us on +971 6 515 4605 or via email at enquiries@pearlinitiative.org 

Follow us also on @PearlInitiative on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter and @ThePearlInitiative on LinkedIn.

© Press Release 2020

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