Insights / Updates

Stay up to date with legal developments in Malaysia.

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Content Code 2022 | Part 1: The Content Forum Publishes the Revamped Communications and Multimedia Content Code

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Content Code ("Content Code"), which was first introduced in September 2004, outlines procedures for self-regulation by setting out the governing standards and best practices for content dissemination within Malaysia. On 30 May 2022, a Third Edition of the Content Code ("Content Code 2022") was registered with MCMC and officially released. It contains a significant number of new amendments to the Second Edition of the Content Code, which was registered with MCMC and released on 14 February 2020.

In this Client Update, which is Part 1 of our series of updates on the Content Code 2022, we offer a brief introduction to the Content Code 2022, where we set out the key changes that have been finalised and incorporated into the new code.

Malaysian Franchise (Amendment) Act 2020: Key Changes

The franchise industry in Malaysia is governed by the Franchise Act 1998 ("the 1998 Act") which regulates, among others, the registration system and enforcement of franchise businesses in Malaysia. The Franchise (Amendment) Act 2020 ("the Amendment Act"), which brings about some changes to the 1998 Act, was gazetted on 6 March 2020 and has come into force on 28 April 2022. 

In this Update, we highlight some of the more significant changes introduced by the Amendment Act.

Online Gambling in Malaysia – not "legally" illegal? - Public Prosecutor v Multi Electrical Supply & Services & 105 Others

Online gambling has been increasing in popularity over the past few years in Malaysia, especially during and after the pandemic. Despite the then Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s promise to table amendments to the Common Gaming Houses Act 1953 ("CGHA") in 2017, the then Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s statement in Dewan Rakyat back in 2019 that the government intends to amend gambling laws to include provisions which deal with online gambling, and the government’s abhorrence of online gambling, to date, the status of online gambling remains a grey area in Malaysia. Laws such as the CGHA and the Betting Act 1953 have not caught up with the times and have not been updated to include express provisions to define and regulate online gambling in Malaysia.

The recent High Court decision in Public Prosecutor v Multi Electrical Supply & Services & 105 Others appears to suggest that online gambling is not illegal in Malaysia, due to the absence of express provisions or laws regulating online gambling in Malaysia. The Court refused to read into a relevant provision of the CGHA anything which would suggest that it can be used to establish the offence of online gambling. The Court further stated that it is not the duty of the court to fill in the blanks in the law when the legislators have yet to rise to the task.

The case highlights the need for the CGHA and other relevant laws to be reviewed and revised to keep up with the times and to close the loopholes.