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7.6.09

CSR Disclosure in Malaysian Companies

We had earlier touched on the crossroads of ethical and Islamic finance in our earlier discussions and on the paper by Zubai Hasan relating to Sustainable Development from an Islamic Perspective. Another paper - also from the International Islamic University of Malasyia - delves into CSR Disclosure in Malaysian Companies, as it scrutinizes the type of information that comes under the banner of ethical or responsible behaviour. The paper does not especifically address Islamic finance or the Shariah compliance of the corporates which are under scrutiny; Nevertheless, it is very poignant in exploring the pitfalls of SRI/CSR (plenty of acronyms to choose from). It is especially critical as it relates to how profound and/or superficial these labels really are in the context of the modern politically-correct corporate culture:

"Findings from the study suggest that the disclosures have a public-relations bias, with a very general, ‘good news’ type of disclosures being the norm. Consistent with prior studies in other developing countries, quantitative or monetary disclosures, as well as ‘bad news’ disclosures are minimal."

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