9 Key Restructuring Insolvency Changes in Malaysia’s Companies Amendment Bill 2023

Malaysia’s Companies Amendment Bill 2023 has been tabled before Parliament’s House of Representatives (see Hansard for 10 October 2023). There will be a fuller Parliamentary debate towards the end of November 2023.

This article focuses on the 9 key restructuring and corporate rescue amendments.

All references below will be to the existing and proposed new sections in the Companies Act 2016 as referred to in the Companies Amendment Bill 2023.
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Financial Distress: 6 Reliefs for Corporate Malaysia

In EY Malaysia’s Transactions Insights (February 2021), it was pointed out that the prolonged impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt Corporate Malaysia, financially and operationally. Almost a year on, the magnitude of financial risks has increased. A vast majority of companies would require some form of recapitalization to improve their financial position.

I identify six much-needed reliefs to provide a shot in the arm for Corporate Malaysia. The reliefs will help to inoculate and strengthen businesses against further distress.

In the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) Consultation Document issued in July 2020, CCM set out policies and a draft proposed Bill in support of such reliefs. I wrote about these changes in The Edge Malaysia as well.

Like the vaccine rollout in Malaysia, I am hoping for a smooth and quick rollout of these proposed laws. The commentary below is based on the proposed laws by the CCM. Continue reading

10 Key Restructuring Changes in the Proposed Companies Amendment Bill 2020

The Companies Commission of Malaysia (SSM) has issued its Consultative Document Companies (Amendment) Bill 2020. The proposed amendments cover a wide range of areas. I will write another time on some of the other areas like beneficial ownership and other amendments.

One key aspect of the Companies Amendment Bill 2020 is the very significant amendments and strengthening of the restructuring framework through the scheme of arrangement and corporate rescue mechanisms. The proposed amendments follow similar moves taken by the United Kingdom and Singapore in assisting and helping distressed companies and ensuring safeguards for creditors’ interests.

I highlight the 10 most significant restructuring and corporate rescue amendments which are in the proposed Companies Amendment Bill 2020. I did take part in the initial consultation process as a member of some of the professional bodies. I very much welcome these much-needed restructuring and relief tools to help distressed businesses in the Covid-19 environment. Continue reading

PEMUDAH Webinar – Post Covid-19: Options for Companies to Emerge Stronger

On Thursday 23 July 2020 at 2.30pm, I will be moderating this webinar on restructuring and corporate rescue. The webinar is organised by PEMUDAH, Malaysia’s Special Task Force to Facilitate Business.

I will be joined by the speakers PohPoh Khoo of Ernst & Young and Kumar Kanagasingam of Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill .

We will cover strategy and insight from the perspective of an insolvency practitioner and legal practitioner. Companies can consider the options to restructure its debts, maintain a good financial position, and emerge stronger in the COVID-19 environment.

Registration is free and you can register here. Seats are limited.

Upcoming Book: Law and Practice of Corporate Insolvency in Malaysia

Sweet & Maxwell is publishing an upcoming book: Law and Practice of Corporate Insolvency in Malaysia. It will be the first dedicated text in Malaysia covering restructuring and insolvency law. Each chapter is written by a lawyer, an insolvency practitioner or a combination of both. The book should be a good blend of the latest legal developments and practical tips.

The book will cover all the areas of winding up, receivership, schemes of arrangement, corporate voluntary arrangement and judicial management. Continue reading

Restraining Order under a Scheme of Arrangement Must Satisfy Pre-Conditions from the Start

An applicant must meet the statutory pre-conditions for the grant of a moratorium (otherwise known as a restraining order) under Malaysia’s scheme of arrangement even at the initial application stage. This was decided in a recent High Court decision dated 22 April 2019. The Court set aside the initial grant of the restraining order as the applicant companies had not satisfied the pre-conditions at the time of the application. I have since written the case commentary on this decision.

To my knowledge, this is also the first decision on this issue under the new section 368(2) of the Companies Act 2016 (CA 2016). There have been conflicting High Court decisions on this issue when interpreting the predecessor section 176(10A) of the Companies Act 1965 (CA 1965). The full grounds of judgment have not been issued yet.

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