Hong Kong has narrowed the corporate governance gap on rival Singapore, keeping its position in the top three of the region's leaders in regulatory standards. The sixth annual corporate governance survey conducted by CLSA Asia-Pacific and the Asian Corporate Governance Association ranks Hong Kong second on 69 points, just one point shy of Singapore on 70 and ahead of third-ranked India on 61. The survey reviews and scores companies in 10 Asian markets on their corporate governance standards in five areas - rules and regulations, enforcement, political and regulatory environment, international accounting and auditing standards, and corporate governance culture. The countries are rated on a scale of one to 100. Hong Kong's corporate governance scores increased from 67 points last year to 69 while its 'corporate governance culture' improved from 46 to 54. 'This was mainly as a result of positive developments such as the emergence of well-governed mid-cap companies, higher pay for independent directors and voluntary voting among large-cap companies,' the survey said. While Singapore remained on top, its score fell from 75 points last year to 70, attributed mainly to the high-profile criminal prosecutions of five directors at China Aviation Oil (Singapore) (CAO) which led to its enforcement score slipping from 65 last year to 56. The report said that because of the CAO incident, 'doubts are being expressed as to whether the regulatory authorities are treating all companies and individuals fairly, disclosure of regulatory action is quite limited and fund managers face significant procedural difficulties in attending shareholder meetings'. Taiwan moved from sixth to fifth place on 52 points. At the other end of the scale, China remained second from bottom at 44, behind the Philippines at 46 but higher than Indonesia at 37.