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Under MACC (Amendment) Act 2018, Section 17A (1), a commercial organization commits an offence if a person associated with the commercial organization corruptly gives, promises or offers any gratification, with intent to obtain or retain business or an advantage in the conduct of business for the commercial organization. This act was enforced since June 2020.

The objective of this new section is to encourage all commercial organization to take the reasonable and proportionate measures to ensure the business do not participate in any of the corrupt activities in order to cultivate the healthy growth of business environment.

At the time of offence occurs for a commercial organization, a person to defence if he is able to prove that he has done due diligence or such offence was committed without his consent. Thus, DO NOT assume that ignorance of law is a defence! It will be a defence for the commercial organization if able to prove had in place adequate procedures to prevent persons associated with the commercial organization from undertaking such conduct.

To establish and implement ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management Systems and comply to Ministerial Guidelines on Adequate Procedures that laid out 5 principles, these could help to prevent the occurrence of corrupt practices in relation to the business activities.