Legal Updates for January 2022

Shipping Law Updates

The Shipping Law Updates is a publication by our Regional Shipping Group which marshals legal expertise, industry insight, and commercial acumen in the fields of maritime and trade from the diverse talent pool of specialist lawyers at the Rajah & Tann Asia offices. The publication provides a snapshot of the key legal, regulatory, case law and industry developments in the region that have an impact on the shipping industry and your operations.

In this issue, we report on the launch of the Fourth Edition Rules of the Singapore Chamber of Maritime Arbitration which will apply to maritime arbitrations commencing this year. We also spotlight the implementation of Protocols on Court-to-Court communication and cooperation in Admiralty, Shipping and Cross-Border Insolvency matters announced by the Supreme Court of Singapore and the Federal Court of Malaysia in October 2021. From a recent court decision in Brunei, with conjoined arbitrations launched in Singapore, we revisit the practical significance of the arbitral seat and the consequences of wrongly interpreting an arbitration agreement. Regarding the topical subject to main-line operators and logistics companies of abandoned containerised cargoes, we consider the options available to manage the same, as well as the factual and legal issues to be considered as a matter of English law and Singapore law.

New Licensing Requirements on the Provision of Cloud Services in Malaysia to Come Into Operation on 1 April 2022

In line with one of the initiatives set out in the Malaysia Digital Economy (MyDIGITAL) Blueprint to shift towards a cloud first strategy and to enhance the usage of cloud services nationwide, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (“MCMC”) issued the ‘Advisory Notice on Cloud Service Regulation Introduced to Increase Accountability for User Data Security and Sustainability of Services’ on 15 October 2021 (“Advisory Notice”), and the ‘Information Paper on Regulating Cloud Services’ on 17 December 2021 (“Information Paper”), to implement light touch licensing requirements for the provision of cloud services in Malaysia, which will be fully in force commencing 1 April 2022.

This Update discusses the implementation of licensing requirements for the provision of cloud services in Malaysia, as well as its implications for cloud service providers.

A Long Overdue Change: The Hague-Visby Rules in Malaysia

The Hague Rules impose minimum duties on commercial carriers of goods by sea. The Hague Rules have been – for the best part since the nation’s independence – a part of Malaysian law. Consequently, despite their many faults, the Hague Rules have played a crucial role in oiling the wheels of Malaysia's sea trade.

As of July 2021 however, the Hague-Visby Rules have now been enacted in West Malaysia. In enacting this improved version of the Hague Rules, the law of carriage of goods by sea in West Malaysia is now in line with that of Malaysia's major trading partners, and (perhaps, more importantly) fit for trade in the 21st century. 

This Update will explore three key differences between the two sets of Rules (as enacted by the Malaysian Parliament) and the thinking behind them.