* Most were for concerns around independence
* Engaged with 520 companies, in-line with last year
* Asia-Pacific companies account for more than half of meetings
LONDON, Oct 21 (Reuters) - BlackRock, the world’s biggest asset manager, said on Thursday it had voted against the re-election of more than 800 company directors during an Asia-dominated third quarter for annual general meetings.
The biggest number of votes - 320 - was in response to concerns around the independence of the directors, with 227 votes for issues related to boardroom diversity, 113 for concerns around pay and 80 related to the directors having too many other jobs.
The votes followed 571 engagements with 520 separate companies, in line with the same period a year earlier, with governance the most-discussed topic, it said in a report.
Climate change and natural capital, which covers issues such as deforestation and water usage, were discussed in more than half of the meetings, it added.
With the bulk of European and North American AGMs held in the second quarter, Asia-Pacific companies accounted for more than half of the 2,430 meetings held in the three months to end-September, it said. (Reporting by Simon Jessop; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)