Extraordinary General Meeting to approve new Articles of Association for AustCham
On behalf of the Board of Directors of Austcham I am pleased to present to members for approval a new set of Articles of Association (“Articles”) to govern the operations of the Chamber into the future.
The review and update of our existing Articles is part of a commitment by the Board to ensure the Chamber is operating to the highest standards of corporate governance and is well positioned for the future.
The existing Articles were put in place on establishment of the Chamber in 1987 and have had only minor amendments to date. Our review was launched to ensure the Articles mirror current legislative requirements in Hong Kong, are fit for purpose and incorporate current standards in corporate governance. The review and preparation of the new Articles included a benchmark study of Articles of other Chambers in Hong Kong and Asia and a consultation with members.
In addition to the new Articles the Board has taken other steps such as establishing a Nomination Committee, reviewing the skills and capabilities of the Board and made commitments to diversity. At our last Annual General Meeting we were pleased to welcome a number of new Board members representing a range of members from different backgrounds and skill sets. We are also proud to announce we now have 30% gender diversity on the Board.
In addition to the general corporate governance changes the new Articles provide for the establishment of a Real Estate Fund whereby 5% of annual Net Profits (with protections built in) will be transferred to a property fund for the purpose of securing premises for the Chamber. We believe this is an important initiative for the long term, sustainable interests of the Chamber.
A summary of key changes included in the new Articles is included in the formal Notices to members.
I would like to thank lawyers King and Wood Mallesons who have provided key assistance to the Chamber in preparation of the Articles.
Please note that in order to approve the Articles the following classes of members must also approve the new Articles prior to the General Members: Founder Members, Corporate Members, Life Honorary Members and Honorary Members. We will hold meetings of each of these classes of members on the same date as the Extraordinary General Meeting at a time shortly prior to the meeting of General Meetings. If you fall into any of these classes you will receive a separate meeting notice.
We now recommend the new Articles to members for approval and I look forward to seeing you at the Extraordinary General Meeting on 27th June 2017. If you are unable to attend I urge you to submit your proxy form to the Secretariat.
[If you have any questions in relation to the Articles prior to the meeting please contact me, Deputy Chair Fiona Nott or CEO Drew Waters.]