Corporate governance takes a leap forward
The publication of Turkey's first set of corporate governance guidelines and plans for a new index on the ISE measuring compliance are encouraging. But the high level of family ownership is an impediment to good practice.
TURKEY IS READYING itself to take a leap into the world of good corporate governance. The leap will have to be pretty huge because the record up to now has been so poor.
A leading Turkish economist says that only Koc and Sabanci, Turkey's two largest private conglomerates, and "to a certain degree" Is Bank, Turkey's largest private bank, have adhered to the principles of good corporate governance.
"Outside these," he says, "my opinion is: be careful, don't give them the benefit of the doubt."
Celik Kurdoglu, a professor of economics who owns Good Company, a consultancy that specializes in teaching good governance practices to business people, concurs. "We are at a rather primitive stage," he says.
The web test Examining the quality of information available on the websites of Istanbul Stock Exchange for the 50 companies in the IMKB 50 index, Kurdoglu found that two of them don't even have websites. Fewer than half that did published their annual reports on their websites. Only 4% disclosed risks associated with their partnerships and affiliates. About a third did not disclose their partnership structure. None of the companies disclosed the remuneration of its board members or its articles of association.