IFC, West African Stock Exchange agree to strengthen corporate governance among listed companies

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank Group today announces an agreement with the West Africa Regional Stock Exchange (Bourse Régionale des Valeurs Mobilières [BRVM]) to work together to strengthen corporate governance practices of companies listed on the Exchange.

In a press release copied to ghanabusinessnews.com, it said under the agreement, the IFC will help BRVM to design, develop, draft and implement a Corporate Governance Code to that effect.

The agreement was reached because of the known fact that corporate governance practices among West African companies lag international standards. Among other issues, they lack corporate governance guidelines that could serve as a reference for companies to improve practices.

In his remarks, Adamou Labara, the IFC’s Acting Country Manager for Côte d’Ivoire, said, “Through this partnership BRVM can leverage IFC’s global expertise in corporate governance to help African companies improve their access to capital.”

The IFC and BRVM are therefore, seeking to provide market participants with a platform of governance principles and standards that would help them strengthen their practices in a progressive and sustainable way. Corporate governance codes elsewhere have served as a tool to improve practices. The implementation of a code in West Africa would lead to greater transparency and improve investor confidence that supports regional capital market development, the release stated.

“This agreement with IFC demonstrates our commitment to adopt best practices. Our aim is to strengthen the capacity of our affiliated companies through the development and the implementation of the Corporate Governance Code and increase their access to financing,” said, Dr. Edoh Kossi Amenounve, Managing Director of BRVM.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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