FIRST PHILIPPINE HOLDINGS IS A CORPORATION THAT IS CONSTANTLY IN ACTION. WE’RE ALWAYS TRYING TO FIND WAYS TO DELIVER FOR OUR STAKEHOLDERS AND THE FILIPINO PEOPLE.
First Philippine Holdings Corporation Chairman Mr. Oscar M. Lopez spoke at the 10th Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Asian Roundtable on September 9, 2009 at the Manila Peninsula Hotel in Makati City. Mr. Lopez spoke in behalf of the Philippine business sector in a panel focused on the country’s experiences and challenges with corporate governance reforms. He outlined the group’s commitment to high standards of corporate governance and how it strives to be in line with global best practices.
His remarks focused on the need for strengthened principles of corporate governance from all sectors in society, as the country moves toward the global age, “Corporate governance is not just good, but essential for our business. We understand that to compete globally for markets for our products, and for funding for our businesses, we must meet the ever increasingly rigorous standards of corporate governance…we believe that corporate governance is much more about what we strongly believe in and about what we are committed to observe in all our corporate decisions and actions. It is about being world-class.”
Mr. Lopez also discussed the present challenges facing leaders in private businesses who are serious about good corporate governance and about being world-class.“ There is a presumption…that we should be able to compete in an even playing field, where the rules of engagement are clear and impartially apply to everyone.But we all know that is often not the case and that we find that we are often pressured to act in ways we deem unbecoming. Even in our own home market, the playing field is often not even, where political patronage determines the winners and the losers, where graft and corruption constantly lurks below the veneer of acceptable governance. To resist, to stay faithful to our values and vision can be very costly”, Mr. Lopez exclaimed.
Joining Mr. Lopez on the panel were Dr. Jesus Estanislao, Chairman of the Institute of Corporate Directors; Amando Tetangco, Jr., Governor of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas; Fe Barin, Chairperson of Securities and Exchange Commission; Francisco Lim, President of Philippine Stock Exhange; and Jeremias Paul, Jr., Undersecretary of the Department of Finance.
The forum marks the 10-year anniversary of the Asian Roundtable on Corporate Governance (ARCG), launched at the time of the Asian financial crisis. The ARCG serves as a regional forum for exchanging experiences and advancing reforms on corporate governance. It gathers the most prominent, active, and influential policy makers, practitioners and experts from Asia and relevant international institutions.
(To view the entire speech of Mr. Lopez, please click on the file below.)
OECD Roundtable Forum_September 9, 2009