Yvonne Park, President of FleishmanHillard Korea, participated as panel host at WCD (Women Corporate Directors) Korea 6th anniversary forum held at 7:30 AM on Wednesday, October 26th, 2022, at Lotte Hotel under the theme of “Strategic imperative for business growth and social impact: Inclusive Board Leadership”
At the forum, Maria Castillo Fernandez, EU Ambassador to Korea, gave a keynote speech under the theme of ‘Women on Boards Policies in Member States and the Effects on Corporate Governance.’ According to Ambassador Fernandez, the share of women on boards of EU’s largest publicly listed companies registered was at 30.6% in 2021. Among member states, France (45.3%) was the only state in which its largest listed companies have at least 40% of each gender on boards. Italy (38.8%) and the Netherlands (38.1%) were close to this mark. She insisted that member states that have taken legislative action saw the highest rates (36.4%) in the share of women on boards. She added that on October 17, the EU Council approved an amendment to the EU regulation which will ensure that at least 40% of non-executive directors and 33% of all senior director roles consist of members of the underrepresented sex by 2026.
During the panel discussion moderated by Yvonne Park, President of FleishmanHillard Korea, Myung-Soon Yoo, CEO of Citibank Korea; Jookeun Park, CEO of Leaders Index; and Kyu-Shik Kim, President of Korea Corporate Governance Forum participated as panelists.
Under the theme of ‘Diversity and Inclusion at Citi,’ Myung-Soon Yoo, CEO of Citibank Korea, introduced the case of Citibank Korea where its DE&I strategy became part of its goals, systems, working programs, and even its culture, enhancing policy effectiveness. She presented that 43% of board members are women as a result of strategic focus on hiring, developing and promoting leaders from a diversity perspective.
Jookeun Park, CEO of Leaders Index, took part in the panel discussion under the theme of ‘Changes in female executives after revision of the Capital Markets Act: Diversity is at the core of change.’ According to CEO Park, the proportion of female directors increased after the revision of the Capital Markets Act, but the proportion of executive directors remained stagnant at 2.7%. He also revealed that the career backgrounds of the increased female non-executive directors are not particularly new. He stressed the importance of cognitive diversity as he evaluated that although enforcement of the Capital Markets Act resulted in a quantitative increase, it was insufficient to meet the fundamental purpose of the Act to raising competitiveness of global companies by heightening independence and expertise of decision-making through securing diversity on boards.
Kyu-Shik Kim, President of the Korea Corporate Governance Forum (KCGF), emphasized shareholder return rate and capital efficiency, which was also highlighted at the 2022 ICGN (International Corporate Governance Network) Seoul Conference as priorities for improving Korean corporate governance from the perspective of investors. In addition, President Kim urged female directors to make efforts to introduce an electronic voting system and electronic power of attorney system.
The forum was attended by Boksil Lee, President of WCD Korea; Lee Young, Minister of SMEs and Startups; Rep. Jeon Ju-hye of the People Power Party; Kim Kyo Tae, CEO of Samjong KPMG, and other distinguished guests.
The Korea Economic Daily
European Parliament Report on Women on Boards Policies in Member States and the Effects on Corporate Governance
ICGN(International Corporate Governance Network) Seoul Forum