CFOs told to be competent as part of good governance

Bursa Malaysia chairman Shireen Ann Zaharah Muhiudeen. (Facebook pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia chairman Shireen Ann Zaharah Muhiudeen says Malaysia needs to develop competent chief financial officers (CFOs) and build up its finances to support the wider governance ecosystem and restore investor confidence.

She said it is important to have competent CFOs in corporate organisations, especially public-listed companies and public interest entities.

“This is necessary if we are to enhance the Malaysian capital market and bring it on par with other jurisdictions in a highly competitive global landscape,” she said at a conference organised by the Malaysian Institute of Accountants titled “Leading in The Digital Age” here today.

In the context of capital markets, she said, upskilling CFOs is an important step to restoring investors’ confidence in the country.

She added that governance is the baseline of transparency.

“If we are transparent in our processes, the people will feel confident.

“Once you have confidence, the people will re-invest, whether it is long term, foreign direct investments or through equity markets. That is what we want,” she said.

Shireen added that Malaysia is a country with great skills, resources and good institutions.

“It just so happens that we have had a lot of bad press. That needs to be changed.”

She said CFOs must be willing to raise red flags when they see irregularities.

“It cannot be a situation where CFOs are too frightened to say anything. Even auditors are so scared,” she added.

“We must work as a group to empower each other so that we become stronger.”