Malaysian Rating Corporation Berhad (MARC) held its 26th Annual General Meeting (AGM), themed "Thriving Through Adversity", via virtual streaming on June 13, 2022.
"In 2021, MARC's total revenue improved by 25% to RM23.69 million (2020: RM18.99 million). Profit before taxes increased to RM9.69 million (2020: RM6.18 million)," said MARC Chairman Datuk Seri Dr Nik Thani N.Hassan Thani in his review of the company's results for the financial year ended 31 December 2021. He added that for 2021, MARC continued to maintain a strong portfolio of corporate bond issuers, having assigned 22 new ratings with a total programme size of RM28.9 billion, with 108 rating reaffirmations.
As at December 31, 2021, MARC has completed 911 ratings since its inception, amounting to RM641.8 billion in issuance value.
MARC's bond and sukuk ratings showed overall improved ratings accuracy in 2021, with the majority of the ratings remaining stable. Over the long term, the ratings accuracy ratio came in at 71.0%, marginally higher than the 70.1% reported in 2020. On the other hand, ratings stability edged lower to 91.6% in 2021 (2020: 95.7%) but remained above its historical average of 87.4% since 2000.
In 2021, MARC was again named Malaysia's Rating Agency of the Year and Project Finance Rating Agency of the Year by Hong Kong-based The Asset. In addition, MARC was also recognised for its role as the external reviewer of SME Bank's RM500 million ASEAN Sustainability Sukuk, which was named Best Sustainability Sukuk for 2021. MARC was also named Best Islamic Rating Agency at the 11th Global Islamic Finance Awards (GIFA), which recognises MARC as a leader in the sukuk rating space.
Datuk Seri Dr Nik added that Malaysia experienced a modest rebound in 2021 with real GDP growth coming in at 3.1%, an indication of a gradual and bumpy economic recovery ahead given the pandemic's long-term scarring. On the external front, the weaker prospects of the world's major economies are also a concern, adding to a potent mix of downside risks to Malaysia's overall trade and national output performance. Against this backdrop, MARC anticipates Malaysia's GDP growth to pick up to 5.5% in 2022, while corporate bond issuance is expected to moderate slightly to between RM100.0 billion and RM110.0 billion.
In his closing remarks, Datuk Seri Dr Nik said, "MARC has successfully completed its group-wide transformation exercise early this year. With a more integrated organisational structure, we look to further develop our expertise in our varied business streams and expand our market reach."
The company's shareholders reviewed and adopted the financial statements, and the Board of Directors declared a first and final single tier dividend of 10 sen per share respectively for the financial year ended December 31, 2021.