UOB chief takes home less money for 2nd year running

Mr Wee’s base salary remained at $1.2 million but he had a smaller bonus and fewer benefits.

United Overseas Bank chief executive Wee Ee Cheong's annual remuneration has fallen for the second year running amid slowing economic growth and more challenging operating conditions for the financial sector.

His total pay for the 12 months to Dec 31 was $8.422 million, down from $9.223 million in 2015.

This was in turn lower than the $10.22 million he made in 2014, when he was the highest-paid chief of the local banks.

While his base salary was unchanged at $1.2 million, he received a smaller bonus and fewer benefits-in-kind in 2016 compared with 2015, according to UOB's annual report released yesterday.

This comes as all three local banks saw full-year net profits dip last year, partly because of their exposure to non-performing loans (NPLs) related to the struggling oil and gas sector.

UOB's net profit fell 3.5 per cent year-on-year to $3.1 billion in 2016.


The bank had to set aside $428 million of specific allowances in the fourth quarter due to NPLs in the oil and gas and shipping industries. This was $313 million more than a year earlier.

Its total exposure to the oil and gas sector amounted to $17.7 billion, chief financial officer Lee Wai Fai told a results briefing in February.

The bank's other directors also took home less last year.

Emeritus chairman Wee Cho Yaw's total pay was $1.335 million, down slightly from $1.352 million a year earlier.

But chairman Hsieh Fu Hua's remuneration for the year came up to $976,000, higher than 2015's $890,000.

He was paid more in directors' fees - $955,000 in 2016 compared with $870,000 in the preceding year - and also received more benefits-in-kind.


This article was first published on March 29, 2017.
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