Malaysia’s infrastructure is particularly well established among Southeast Asian nations, it has a low crime rate, and English is well understood as a semi-official language, so there are few communication barriers. It also has relatively few natural disasters, and to date, many Japanese companies have established a presence there. In recent years, due to rising wages and other factors, the rate of Japanese companies moving into Malaysia has slowed somewhat, but there is still a constant stream of companies doing so.
Malaysia’s legal system shows strong influences of British law, but domestically, it has adopted its own Bumiputera policy, which gives preferential treatment to ethnic Malays, which can sometimes have an impact on business. Also, because Islam is considered the state religion in Malaysia, Islamic law is applied in some cases, which is a unique aspect of its legal system.
Kitahama Partners has an attorney who has worked in a local law firm in Malaysia. We partner with local firms to assist Japanese companies in a variety of areas, including M&A, joint ventures, contractual transactions, and various types of legal research.