Arminta Saladžienė receives the Swedbank Baltic Sea Award 2009
Arminta Saladžienė, Chairman of the Management Board of NASDAQ OMX, Lithuania, and Chairman of the Executive Committee of the newly established Baltic Institute of Corporate Governance has been honoured with the Swedbank Baltic Sea Award 2009 for her work regarding good corporate governance in the Baltic States.
The winner was announced by Håkan Berg, Head of Baltic Banking at Swedbank, at a dinner in connection to the Baltic Development Forum Summit in Stockholm.
Swedbank Baltic Sea Award is assigned to an individual or organization that has made an extraordinary contribution to the development of the Baltic Sea Region. Arminta Saladžienė was selected among many qualified candidates for her work and commitment to the region.
Part of Saladžienė’s important efforts is to support the newly established non-profit initiative Baltic Institute of Corporate Governance, which aims at raising awareness of good corporate governance in the Baltic States, as well as educating and certifying professional board members.
“With this price, we want to stress the importance of the work to improve corporate governance. Good corporate governance practices lead to better companies and, in turn, better and more progressive societies”, said Håkan Berg, Head of Baltic Banking at Swedbank.
“We must recognise talents and their importance. In a globalised world, the ability to attract, develop and retain talents will be crucial for the Baltic Sea Region’s competitiveness and future prosperity, said the Chairman of the Baltic Development Forum“, the Former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Denmark, Uffe Ellemann-Jensen.
About the Award
It is the third time the Baltic Sea Award is handed out; in 2007 it was dedicated Mr. Björn Carlson, Founder of Baltic Sea 2020, for his great personal involvement for improving the environment of the Baltic Sea, and last year to the President of Finland Tarja Halonen, for her longstanding focus on the common good for the Baltic Sea Region.
The jury has consisted of Swedbank’s Chairman Carl Eric Stålberg, the Baltic Development Forum’s Chairman Uffe Ellemann-Jensen and Sweden’s Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt. The Prize sum is € 5 000.
Swedbank Baltic Sea Award 2009 – Rationale
A symbol of Baltic Sea talent
The Baltic Sea Region is gifted with many talented young people. Not least in the Baltic countries, young people have assumed immense responsibilities in a very early stage of their carriers and have done very well. It has almost become a symbol of the dynamism and energy of the Baltic States from which the neighbouring countries can learn a lot.
Particularly in times of political and economic troubles, we need talents that can serve as role models in finding new ways into a brighter future. We need a boost to re-climb the Top of Europe.
We must recognise talents and their importance. In a globalised world, the ability to attract, develop and retain talents will be crucial for the Baltic Sea Region’s competitiveness and future prosperity. If talents and experts are not recognised, they will find other and more appreciated environments.
This year’s Swedbank Baltic Sea Award goes to a talented, successful, and young business woman, who is both Chairman of the Management Board of NASDAQ OMX Vilnius and Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Baltic Institute of Corporate Governance: Arminta Saladžienė.
Arminta Saladžienė has taken upon her to support the newly established Baltic Institute of Corporate Governance. It is a non-profit initiative, which aims at raising awareness of good corporate governance in the Baltic States, as well as educating and certifying professional board members. The tutors come from all parts of the region to share their experience and knowledge in corporate governance.
The aim is to improve the understanding of good corporate governance and the value of adhering to established principles within this area. Good corporate governance practices lead to better companies and, in turn, better and more progressive societies. When one of the declared goals of the institute is to find greater financial sector stability, we can only but give her our full support.
Arminta Saladžienė was selected among many highly qualified candidates nominated after an open invitation. By awarding you this prize, we would like to express our appreciation of your talent, work and commitment to this Region.
Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I cannot express enough what a great privilege it is for me to receive the Swedbank Baltic Sea Award 2009 and I would like to thank you all, the Baltic Development Forum and Swedbank for this high and unexpected honor. Receiving this award is a truly humbling experience as well as great responsibility and stimulus to continue change in our communities, countries, the Baltic Sea Region.
Andy Warhol once said: They always say time changes things, but actually you have to change them. Yes, it is us.
The recent economic and financial crisis makes it a perfect time to act and find sustainable ways towards more competitive and balanced economies. It is our joint responsibility and each of can and must contribute.
Values promoted by corporate governance have long been close to my skin because it lies at the heart of what we do at NASDAQ OMX – deliver and develop well-functioning capital markets that you can trust.
So I was very lucky to join a small group of dedicated, visionary people who care about the future of the Baltic region to start a non profit initiative to advance good corporate governance in the Baltics.
To us corporate governance is not just a set of rules and regulations or rigid processes and disciplines affecting the way a company is directed.
Good corporate governance represents the fundamental values of transparency, accountability, integrity and fairness. It is key to the health of our corporations, markets and economies.
We created the Baltic Institute of Corporate Governance in our free time, with no financial backing, no budget but with great deal of support from the people around the Baltic Sea and beyond:
- the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce,
- the Danish and Swedish Corporate Governance Boards,
- the International Finance Corporation,
- our dear colleagues from Bonniers, Ernst and Young, Glimstedt, NASDAQ OMX and many more dedicated people to whom we are very grateful.
Two specific initiatives are under way:
- We will have the first ever professional board member education for the Baltic business leaders in only a few weeks.
- We have established a pan-Baltic Corporate Governance board composed of trendsetting business people who will promote the Corporate Governance agenda in the region.
We strongly believe that the Baltic companies, if better governed, will attract investment premiums, get access to cheaper debt, and outperform their peers, making our economies grow and societies prosper.
I’m looking forward to involving many of you in our initiatives as partners, advisers, supporters or participants.
I truly believe that there are hundreds of other fantastic projects in the Baltic Sea Region deserving attention, support and reward for their efforts and results – my strong wish is that you as civic leaders will go home and give them the extra energy and support they need.
Your support to me and our corporate governance initiative will create a wave of positive energy to reach much higher goals.
Thank you very much again for the Swedbank Baltic Sea Award 2009.
Nordiska museet, Stockholm, 5 October 2009
For further information
Peter Nygårds, Head of Public Affairs, Swedbank, phone: +46-70 690 16 00
Hans Brask, Director, Baltic Development Forum, phone: +45-60 21 85 81