Transparency in corporate reporting: assessing emerging market multinationals

Transparency in corporate reporting: assessing emerging market multinationals

This report evaluates the disclosure practices of 100 major emerging market multinationals headquartered in 15 countries and active in 185 countries. The report is part of a series on corporate reporting published by Transparency International since 2008. Initially focused on
the world’s top multinationals, the series was expanded to include a first report on emerging market multinationals in 2013.

To enhance comparability, the company sample for this report is primarily based on the 2013 edition of the Transparency in Corporate Reporting: Assessing Emerging Market Multinationals report. This report assesses the public disclosure practices of emerging market multinationals based on three dimensions: first, the reporting of key elements of their anti-corruption programmes; second, the disclosure of their company structures and holdings; and, third, the disclosure of key financial information on a country-b-ycountry basis. This information was gathered from corporate websites and other publicly available sources by a team of Transparency International researchers.

Despite some scattered signs of improvement since 2013, the overall results of the assessed companies remain weak, a clear indication that emerging market multinationals still practise low standards of transparency.

The overall average score for the 100 companies assessed in this report is 3.4 out of 10, a slightly weaker performance than in 2013 but almost on a par with the 3.8 overall score obtained in our 2014 report assessing
the world’s 124 largest multinationals. It is disconcerting to observe that emerging market multinationals, with an average score of 48 per cent, have barely registered improvement in the disclosure of their anti-corruption programmes since 2013, when their average score was 46 per cent. Once again, they trail behind the top global publicly listed companies assessed in 2014.

Overall index result:

  • emerging market multinationals continue to fall short of the corporate transparency standards that are expected of multinationals operating internationally
  • publicly listed companies perform better in all dimensions than state-owned enterprises and privately held companies
  • country-by-country reporting remains the weakest result for a majority of emerging market multinationals
  • The performance of Chinese companies continues to be disappointing overall, but there are a few notable exceptions, particularly with regard to the disclosure of anti-corruption programmes
  • Chinese entities have different standards of disclosure: levels of transparency for China-based state-owned parent companies are lower than those adopted for their publicly-listed foreign subsidiaries and associated entities
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