It is imperative that life sciences companies operating globally stay on top of anti-corruption developments around the world, which is why we wanted to ensure our clients were aware of recent developments in Malaysia. In late July 2019, the Securities Commission Malaysia announced that it would implement an anti-corruption action plan (the Action Plan) seeking to improve the standards of corporate governance within the country.

The Action Plan supplements anti-corruption legislative changes recently introduced by the Malaysian government – the corporate liability provisions under a new Section 17A of Malaysia’s primary anti-corruption law, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act (the MACCA). These provisions apply to Malaysian companies and foreign companies conducting business in Malaysia.

A key element of the Action Plan requires companies that are listed in Malaysia to implement an “effective anti-corruption framework” that corresponds with the Malaysian government’s Guidelines on Adequate Procedures provided in December 2018 (the Guidelines). This follows the Securities Commission’s May 31, 2019 evaluation of Malaysia-listed companies. The evaluation found that only 59 percent of these companies have an anti-corruption policy, with a majority of these policies having gaps with regard to the Guidelines.

To read more about Malaysia’s anti-corruption Action Plan and its implications, visit Reed Smith’s website.