The Competition, Standards and Liberalisation (CSL) Strategic Reform Initiative
(SRI) seeks to develop an efficient and competitive business environment and culture
that support Malaysia’s goal of becoming a high-income nation by 2020.
Championed by the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism for Competition, the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) for Standards and the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) for liberalisation, this SRI’s efforts have recently centred on:
- implementing competition legislation;
- enhancing the adoption and usage of standards and best practices; and
- further liberalisation measures to the services sector
The Competition component aims to build a strong culture of competition in the country
by promoting efficient production of goods and services at competitive prices, while
supporting innovation and development.
In an effort to strengthen competitiveness in the Malaysian market, the Government
enacted the Competition Act 2010, which was enforced in January 2012.
Initiatives falling under the umbrella of Competition are undertaken by Malaysia
Competition Commission (MyCC) and the Competition Appeal Tribunal.
Malaysia Competition Commission
Established in April 2011, MyCC was responsible for positioning the building blocks
for the enforcement of the Competition Act on 1 January, 2012.
The Commission’s responsibilities also include:
Competition Appeal Tribunal
- receiving and investigating complaints;
- issuing decisions; and
undertaking market reviews to assess the nature and level of competition within
industries and sectors.
The Competition Appeal Tribunal represents another component of the Competition
Act 2010, and was established to hear appeals on MyCC’s decisions. Its establishment
was announced by the Prime Minister in May 2012 with the appointment of its President
and seven Members of the Tribunal. The Tribunal is composed of experts from the
legal, business and economic fields.
The Competition Appeal Tribunal has exclusive jurisdiction to review any decision
made by MyCC. Similar to a subordinate court under the Subordinate Courts Act 1948,
the Tribunal is empowered to summon parties to its proceedings, and procure and
receive evidence. The Tribunal’s decisions are final and binding.
- In 2014, MyCC conducted 31 advocacy programmes throughout Malaysia and published two new handbooks entitled “Garis Panduan Menentang Tipuan Bida dalam Perolehan Awam” (“Guidelines for Fighting Bid Rigging in Government Procurement”) and “Help Us Detect Bid Rigging”.
- The Federation of Malaysia Manufacturers and MyCC launched a “FMM Competition Checklist” on 25 November 2014 for its members. The checklist summarised MyCC’s Compliance Guidelines and provided a “To-Do”checklist with recommended reviews and actions to be taken.
The standards value chain covers the development, usage and enforcement of standards
in Malaysian goods and services. The development of standards falls under the purview
of STANDARDS MALAYSIA, an agency under MOSTI, which works with SIRIM as the standards
development agency, and other standards writing organisations.
Various agencies such as the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI),
the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), Ministry of Health (MoH), Ministry of Domestic
Trade, Consumerism and Cooperatives and the Energy Commission are also involved
in promoting standards usage, with the enforcement of mandatory standards is undertaken
by the respective regulatory bodies.
Measures on standards are undertaken through i) cross-cutting initiatives and ii)
across NKEAs (sectoral initiatives).
Cross-cutting initiatives focus on developing an appropriate eco-system for the
development and usage of standards across industry.
- Standards Malaysia launched the National Standards Compliance Programme (NSCP) in June 2014 with the aim of increasing standards compliance and to bridge initiatives offered by the various Government agencies. 77 companies qualified to sign up for financial and technical assistance for certification under the NSCP.
- Under the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), a total of 780 farms were certified under Malaysian Good Agriculture Practices (MyGAP), resulting in a cumulative total of approximately 3,200 certified farms in 2014 compared to approximately 2,500 certified farms in 2013.
- Under the Ministry of Health (MoH), a total of 530 establishments complied with Makanan Selamat Tanggungjawab Industri (MeSTI) in 2014, an increase of 21.5% from 436 premises in 2013.
- Under the Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water (KeTTHA), 60 new companies received green recognition in 2014 from MGTC. The objective of this green recognition is to encourage the production of local green products and services, in order to achieve the nation’s target of reducing carbon intensity by 40% by year 2020 (compared to 2005). This recognition will also provide the foundation for these companies to work towards the MyHIJAU Mark.
The development and usage of standards for the Agriculture NKEA focus on benchmarking
Malaysia’s agricultural practices against international standards such as
Good Agriculture Practice (GAP). These efforts are centred on standards usage in
areas including aquaculture, premium fruit production and processed food.
- During the year, the Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Indsutry consolidated three programmes under a single banner the Malaysia Good Agriculture Practice (MyGAP), ensuring Malaysian produce gained better recognition in both domestic and international markets.
- A total of 2,400 farms in Malaysia were certified under MyGAP.
- 32 farms in Lok Butun, Sabah adopted an indigenous standard for seaweed cultivation (MS2467: 2012) during the year.
- The MS2528:2013 standard on dried seeweed from Carageenophyte was approved on March 11. A collaborative effort between the Department of Fisheries and the private sector, the standard sets out to specify the minimum acceptable standard such as moisture content, impurities and compliance to food hygiene. All three factors are required to achieve industry-grade dried seaweed for carrageenean processing.
The enforcement of standards in the Healthcare NKEA aims to strengthen the competitiveness
of the healthcare sector by ensuring hospitals, laboratories and research facilities
are audited and certified and their accreditation status is maintained to sustain
high quality standards.
In view of this, MoH has implemented an accreditation programme for MoH hospitals,
overseen by the Malaysian Society of Health for Quality in Health (MSQH).
Business Services NKEA
- Capacity-building programmes were carried out to encourage accreditation of private hospitals by the Malaysian Society for Quality in Health (MSQH) during the year. Through these initiatives, 15 private hospitals were accredited by MSQH in 2013, bringing the total number of accredited private hospitals to 42.
- 25 public hospitals were also accredited in 2013, bringing the total number of accredited public hospitals to 112.
- 436 premises were certified under the Makanan Selamat Tanggungjawab Industri programme (MeSTI).
The Business Services NKEA encompasses a large number of industries and professions
that support the growth of the economy. The focus on standards for this NKEA is
to establish the framework for green labelling and the certification of cyber security
facilities and products.
The development of the green industry has been driven by growing awareness and demand
for sustainably produced products. Green labelling certifies that a product meets
quality and export requirements while providing consumer assurance of sustainable
- In 2013, 76 products were endorsed under the MyHijau programme, which facilitated collaboration between Malaysian Green Technology Corporation (MGTC) and the Certification Bodies in growing the green industry.
- MGTC also developed five green product criteria documents, providing industry with five key criteria that conform to sustainable green standards.
The CSL SRI for cyber security will initially focus on standards required to protect
sensitive and valuable information and services. The initial thrust of this initiative
is to ensure that Critical National Information Infrastructures (CNIIs) comply with
information security standards such as ISO/IEC 27001 [Information Security Management
System (ISMS) and Common Criteria (CC)]. The lead agencies for this are the National
Security Council (MKN) and Cyber Security Malaysia (CSM), an agency under MOSTI.
- The Cyber Security initiative saw 121 CNIISs certified under the Information Security Management System (ISMS) during the year.
- 39 products have been certified under the Malaysian Common Criteria Certification and Evaluation Scheme as of December.
In an effort to strengthen local capabilities and enhance capacity through greater
foreign investment and technology, Malaysia has undertaken a policy of progressive
liberalisation. The liberalisation process is co-ordinated, monitored and guided
by the Malaysian Services Development Council (MSDC), chaired by the Minister of
International Trade and Industry.
Budget 2012 identified 17 sub-sectors to be liberalised in stages, which later increased
to 18 with the inclusion of quantity surveying services.
Following the liberalisation of 15 sub-sectors in 2012, the architecture, engineering
and quantity surveying services are expected to be ready for liberalisation in 2013,
pending amendments to their respective legislation.
To further improve competitiveness in the services sector, this initiative has also
overseen a study on domestic regulations in four sub-sectors: health travel, technical
and vocational education and training (TVET), private higher education and renewable energy.
Following the study, an action plan will be formulated to address any regulatory
concerns in the sub-sectors and will be implemented in 2013.
The Government will also consider the liberalisation of additional sub-sectors or
increasing the depth of liberalisation within the existing sub-sectors. In this
respect, the Government will continue engaging stakeholders to address their concerns
to communicate the crucial role of liberalisation.
- In 2014, the MPC headed a Working Group on Institutional and Legislative Framework to map out Government formalities, and to review and remove unnecessary regulation of the services sectors which included architectural, construction, healthcare and education services.
- The amendments to the Acts for the remaining three sub-sectors, architectural services (Architect Act 1967), engineering services (Engineering Act 1967) and quantity surveying services (Quantity Surveyor Act 1967) from the 2012 package were approved by Parliament in December 2014.