Below are key takeaways from ISS’ recently released 2021 Latin America Proxy Season Preview. The full report is available to institutional subscribers by logging into ProxyExchange then selecting the Governance Exchange and its Report Center tab and to corporate subscribers by logging into Governance Analytics then selecting the Governance Exchange and the Report Center tab.
- Virtual meetings are expected to be the standard for the Latin America proxy season in 2021. This will be considered the real test regarding the adoption of the meeting format after regulations were introduced to the different markets in 2020 once proxy season was well underway, which limited its use in the first year.
- COVID-19 has had a particularly heavy impact in the Latin Region with the World Bank estimating a regional economic contraction of 6.9 percent for 2020. According to the multilateral organization, five of the 10 emerging markets and developing economies with the highest COVID-19 deaths per capita are in the region.
- Government Intervention in state-controlled companies and political instability in Brazil threatens to erode shareholders’ protections put in place to shield these mixed capital companies from political intervention after years of corruption investigations (Operation Car Wash) in the market.
- Gender Diversity is expected to improve in 2021 for Latin American companies, with increased pressure from investors and market stakeholders in the region that has yet to show material growth on gender and racial representation at the corporate and board levels.
- Green Bonds and ESG Disclosure are gaining prevalence in the region.
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