Darco Water Technologies Limited (“Company” together with its subsidiaries “Group”) are committed to maintaining a high standard of measures, practices and transparency in the disclosure of material information in line with those set out in the Code of Corporate Governance 2012 (“Code”) and the disclosure guide developed by the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Limited (“SGX-ST”) in January 2015 (“Guide”).
The Company has established various self-regulating and monitoring mechanisms for effective corporate governance in discharging its responsibilities to protect and enhance shareholders’ value and financial performance of the Group.
This report describes the Company’s corporate governance processes and structures that were in place throughout the financial year ended 31 December 2018 (“FY2018”), with specific reference made to the principles and guidelines of the Code which forms part of the continuing obligations of the Listing Manual of the SGX-ST.
On 6 August 2018, the Monetary Authority of Singapore issued a revised Code of Corporate Governance (“2018 Code”)and accompanying Practice Guidance. The 2018 Code supersedes and replaces the Code and will apply to Annual Reports covering financial years commencing 1 January 2019. The Group will review and set out the corporate practices in place to comply with the 2018 Code for its next Annual Report for the financial year ending 31 December 2019.
Steps have been taken, as far as practicable, towards continued compliance to the principles and guidelines with the recommendations in the Code, taking into account the size of the Group’s business and organization structure, and the Board of Directors (“Board”) is pleased to report on the Company’s efforts to adhere to the principles and guidelines as set out in the Code for FY2018. Where there are areas of non-compliance, the reasons have been set out in the following sections of the corporate governance report.
Board’s Conduct of its Affairs
Principle 1: Every company should be headed by an effective Board to lead and control the Company. The Board is collectively responsible for the long-term success of the Company. The Board works with Management to achieve this objective and the Management remains accountable to the Board.
Board Composition and Balance
Principle 2: There should be a strong and independent element on the Board, which is able to exercise objective judgement on corporate affairs independently, in particular, from Management and 10% shareholders. No individual or small group of individuals should be allowed to dominate the Board’s decision making.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Principle 3: There should be a clear division of responsibilities between the leadership of the Board and the executives responsible for managing the Company’s business. No one individual represents a considerable concentration of power.
Principle 4: There should be a formal and transparent process for the appointment and re-appointment of Directors to the Board.
Principle 5: There should be a formal assessment of the effectiveness of the Board as a whole and its board committees and the contribution by each Director to the effectiveness of the Board
Access to Information
Principle 6: In order to fulfil their responsibilities, Directors should be provided with complete, adequate and timely information prior to board meetings and on an on-going basis so as to enable them to make informed decisions to discharge their duties and responsibilities.
Principle 7: There should be a formal and transparent procedure for developing policy on executive remuneration and for fixing the remuneration packages of individual Directors. No Director should be involved in deciding his own remuneration.
Level and Mix of Remuneration
Principle 8: The level of remuneration should be aligned with the long-term interest and risk policies of the Company, and should be appropriate to attract, retain and motivate (a) the Directors to provide good stewardship of the Company, and (b) key management personnel to successfully manage the Company. However, companies should avoid paying more than is necessary for this purpose.
Disclosure of Remuneration
Principle 9: Each company should provide clear disclosure of its remuneration policies, level and mix of remuneration, and the procedures for setting remuneration, in the Company’s annual report. It should provide disclosure in relation to its remuneration policies to enable investors to understand the link between remuneration paid to Directors and key executives, and performance.
Principle 10: The Board should present a balanced and understandable assessment of the Company’s performance, position and prospects.
Principle 11: The Board is responsible for the governance of risk. The Board should ensure that Management maintains a sound system of risk management and internal controls to safeguard shareholders’ interests and the company’s assets, and should determine the nature and extent of the significant risks which the Board is willing to take in achieving its strategic objectives.
Principle 12: The Board should establish an Audit Committee with written terms of reference which clearly set out its authority and duties.
Principle 13: The Company should establish an effective internal audit function that is adequately resourced and independent of the activities it audits.
Principle 14: Companies should treat all shareholders fairly and equitably, and should recognise, protect and facilitate the exercise of shareholders’ rights and continually review and update such governance arrangements.
Principle 15: Companies should actively engage their shareholders a policy to promote regular, effective and fair communication with shareholders.
Principle 16: Companies should encourage greater shareholder participation at general meetings of shareholders, and allow shareholders the opportunity to communicate their views on various matters affecting the Company.
In compliance with Rule 1207(19) of the Listing Manual of the SGX-ST, the Company has adopted its own internal compliance code to provide guidance for the Company, Directors and all its Officers in relation to their dealings in the Company’s securities.
The Company, Directors and its Officers are not allowed to deal in the Company’s shares during the period commencing one month before the announcement of the Company’s half year and full year results, and ending on the date of the announcement of the relevant results. Additionally, they are not allowed to deal in the Company’s shares while in possession of price sensitive information. The Directors and Officers are required to report to the Company Secretary whenever they deal in the Company’s shares and the Company Secretary will make the necessary announcements. In addition, the Company, Directors and officers are also expected to observe insider-trading laws at all times even when dealing in securities within the permitted trading period and they are not to deal in the Company’s securities on short-term considerations.
During the financial year, there were no material contracts entered into by the Company or any of its subsidiary companies involving the interests of the CEO, any Director or the controlling shareholder of the Company, either still subsisting at the end of the financial year or if not then subsisting, entered into since the end of the previous financial year.
The Company has established a register to ensure that all Interested Person Transactions are properly recorded, reviewed and approved, and are conducted on an arm’s length basis to ensure that all transactions with interested persons are reported on a timely manner to the AC, if any, and that transactions are carried out on a normal commercial terms and will not be prejudicial to the interest of the Company and its minority Shareholders.