The 16th annual RAM League Awards (RLA) and Conference was held at Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Kuala Lumpur on April 25th. The event was graced by guest of honour, YBhg Datuk Syed Zaid Albar, Chairman of the Securities Commission Malaysia. The RLA acknowledges the work of the most influential and outstanding financial institutions (FIs) and organisations that are thought leaders, innovators and visionaries in the Malaysian bond market. A total of 25 awards in 6 categories were presented that evening.
The “Be Green, Be Seen” theme for RLA 2019 was inspired by the growing importance of green and sustainable finance. Befitting the occasion, the conference focused on Malaysia’s Economic Outlook for 2019 as well as Opportunities and Challenges in the Malaysian Bond Market, including retail and green bond issuance.
As per tradition, the Lead Manager Awards were presented to leading FIs, with Hong Leong Investment Bank Berhad taking pole position in RAM’s league tables in terms of corporate bond programme size as at end-December 2018, having arranged RM28.50 bil or 34% of the RM83.68 bil of RAM-rated corporate bonds. Bank Islam Malaysia Berhad, meanwhile, took first place in terms of sukuk programme value, with RM10.0 bil or 35% of RAM-rated sukuk. Maybank Investment Bank Berhad led the field for the number of RAM-rated deals in both corporate bonds and sukuk for 2018.
This year’s RLA Project Finance Award went to Edra Energy Sdn Bhd as the issuer of a RM5.09 billion Sukuk Wakalah facility. Rated AA3/Stable by RAM, Edra is an independent power producer incorporated to design, construct, own, operate and maintain a 2,242 MW combined-cycle, gas turbine (CCGT) power plant – the largest CCGT plant in Malaysia to tap the domestic corporate bond and sukuk market.
RAM Sustainability Rating Awards were presented to AMMB Holding Berhad (Ambank Group) and Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad (KLK) as pioneers in their respective industries. This award is a special recognition of exemplary corporates and issuers that practise leadership in corporate sustainability in various aspects of their business with a view to driving the transformation of the industry landscape.
The award acknowledges KLK as the first plantation group to be assigned a RAM Sustainability Rating. KLK’s Gold Sustainability Rating reflects its outstanding sustainability performance after taking into consideration its environment, social and governance as well as positive impact attributes. KLK’s strong sustainability performance is spurred by a robust sustainability governance structure and the establishment of an overarching Sustainability Policy that is aligned to the Principles and Criteria of the Roundtable of Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).
Ambank Group was recognised as the first banking group to secure a RAM Sustainability Rating. Ambank Group was assigned a Silver Sustainability Rating to reflect its overall sustainability performance, primarily driven by strong sustainability governance and initiatives. AmBank Group also displayed a strong awareness of financial inclusion, responsible lending and investments. Sustainable finance and banking is a megatrend
that is fast shaping the dynamics of the global financial sector. Banks play a significant role in the financial eco-system vis-à-vis creating a positive impact.
RAM wishes all award winners congratulations and we thank all attendees for making RLA a prestigious annual event for FIs and issuers alike in the Malaysian bond market.