Institutional investors establish the first edition of a Dutch Stewardship Code

18-09-2017

Pension funds, insurers and asset managers have prepared a draft Dutch Stewardship Code which expresses their position as an engaged and responsible shareholder at Dutch listed companies. Application of the code’s principles by institutional investors will contribute to sustainable long-term value creation of the investee companies and, consequently, to the long-term returns on the investment portfolio. The code also makes pension funds, insurers and asset managers more accountable to their beneficiaries and clients by making transparent how the exercise of the shareholder rights have contributed to the protection of the value of the investment portfolio. The draft code of conduct has been prepared by Eumedion participants and has been launched today by a public consultation.

The Dutch Stewardship Code should replace the Eumedion Best Practices for Engaged Share-Ownership, established in 2011. These best practices have been applied since 2011 by almost all 65 domestic and foreign institutional investors who are Eumedion participants. Eumedion has decided to transform the best practices into an official code of conduct because of new European obligations and responsibilities for institutional investors, which will come into force from June 2019. These new obligations are already incorporated in the draft Stewardship Code. All Dutch pension funds, insurers and asset managers will be invited to sign the code. Foreign institutional investors will be asked to endorse the code.

The draft Dutch Stewardship Code emphasises informed voting by institutional investors and their willingness to conduct a constructive dialogue with Dutch listed companies, with other shareholders and with relevant stakeholders. In addition, signatories are expected to be transparent on the voting and engagement policy, the implementation thereof and their full equity holdings.

Comments and suggestions on the draft code are welcome until November 15, 2017 via info@eumedion.nl. It is intended to publish the final version of the code in December 2017.
 

Click here for the draft Dutch Stewardship Code

Click here for the press notice