THE NEW CODE ON CORPORATE GOVERNANCE 2012
RAISING THE BAR
The new Malaysian Code on Corporate Governance 2012 (“MCCG 2012”) was issued by the Securities Commission (“SC”) in March 2012, and is effective from 31 December 2012. The MCCG 2012 is the first major deliverable of the SC’s Corporate Governance Blueprint 2011 which outlines a 5 year strategic action plan of the SC to elevate the standards of corporate governance in Malaysia.
Franchise (Amendment) Act 2012
Reinforcing the Franchise Industry
In 2011, the franchise industry contributed a total of RM21.48 billion to the Malaysian economy, equivalent to 2.5% of Malaysia’s Gross Domestic Product. Among the well-known brands are Nelson’s, Gloria Jean’s and Secret Recipe, to name a few. In order to encourage healthy competition in this important industry, the government recently amended the Franchise Act 1998 (“Act”). The Franchise (Amendment) Act 2012 (“Amendment Act”) is expected to come into force on 1st January 2013. The Amendment Act introduces three new provisions, amends twenty two sections and deletes two other sections from the Act. This article focuses on some of the key amendments to the Act.
Consumer Protection (Amendment) Act 2010
Empowering Consumers, Undermining Retailers?
Malaysia did not have specific legislation governing unfair contract terms between businesses and consumers, unlike the United Kingdom and other commonwealth countries such as Singapore, until the Consumer Protection (Amendment) Act 2010 introduced Part IIIA to the Consumer Protection Act 1999 (“CPA”) which has, to some extent, addressed this lacuna.
The Minimum Retirement Age Act 2012
How this affects working people
The Minimum Retirement Age Act 2012 (“MRA”) was passed in June 2012 and is expected to be enforced by January next year. What is the significance of the MRA? The retirement age previously stood at 55. The MRA raises the retirement age of an employee in the private sector to 60, bringing it in line with other countries in the region like Thailand and Indonesia. Singapore has increased its retirement age to 62.
Money Services Business Act 2011
A revamp of the money services business industry
In 2009, Bank Negara Malaysia (“BNM”) initiated a review of the legal and regulatory framework for the remittance, money changing, and wholesale currency businesses (collectively described as the “money services business”) in Malaysia, with a view of modernizing the landscape of these businesses on par with international standards, and enhancing the integrity of the industry. The review culminated in the passing of the Money Services Business Act 2011 (the “Act”) this year which came into force on 1 December 2011.