Ethical and Governance Momentum by Institutional Investors: The Challenges and Opportunities within Middle East Markets


Ethical Boardroom – Winter 2020

by Dr. Assem Safieddine and Leila Atwi 

Over the past decade, global markets have witnessed a noticeable re-orientation in the views and concepts of corporate purpose.

More companies are now integrating the interests of stakeholders into their decisions and operations and are shifting away from a mere focus on maximizing shareholder value. Firms are indeed more actively considering and implementing ways to better serve their customers, to be mindful of employees’ interests, and to weigh the impact of their actions and activities on various ethical, social, and environmental fronts.

Do the Middle East markets have the potential to benefit from such trends in institutional investments?

The article attempts to assess how institutional investors are positioned in these markets and what role they play or are ready to play.

The ownership structures observed in the region curtail an active investor engagement and impede a serious advancement into more ethically and socially responsible practices.

While the stewardship role is still almost nonexistent among Middle East companies, some regulatory, market, and corporate initiatives may open the door for a promising long-term shift.

For more details, please check the full article.