Singapore's investment environment is thriving and transparent, generally recognized as being marked by sound governance practices amongst investors. Nevertheless, in light of certain trends that are developing in the business landscape, there is scope for the investor community to proactively reinforce the mindset and practice of stewardship.
In today's context, the investment value-chain linking ultimate asset owners to investee companies is increasingly complex. Many countries are seeing a trend towards fragmented ownership, especially in listed companies, with many shareholders each holding a small proportion of shares. Coupled with increasingly shorter shareholding tenure, the ownership mentality is arguably being eroded and replaced by a prevalent short-term view of investment and portfolio management. The emphasis on stewardship is therefore relevant and timely.
Stewardship is important for the wider business and investment ecosystem, including investors and investee companies. The Singapore Stewardship Principles (SSP) for Responsible Investors are intended to enhance this positive environment by encouraging companies to pursue the spirit of good governance and stewardship over that of form, with the ultimate objective of helping companies secure their performance over the long term.