180 more directors to be charged

Headline: 180 more directors to be charged
Publication: NST
Date of publication: Mar 16, 2007
Section heading: Business Times
Page number: 40
Byline / Author: By Chong Jin Hun

THE Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) will haul 180 more company directors to court, in addition to the 120 whose cases were filed at the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court on Tuesday.

CCM chief executive Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil said that a bulk of the estimated 300 high-ranking company officials did not submit their companies' financial accounts to the regulator.

If found guilty, the offenders could be fined up to RM30,000, or face a jail term of not less than five years.

"For this week, the balance of about 180 directors will be charged in court," Abdul Karim told reporters at CCM's annual dialogue in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

The annual event offers the public a channel to air their views on the regulator's services.

Based on CCM's figures, the regulator penalised 5,271 companies for unethical corporate practices last year.

There were 752,073 companies on CCM's list in 2006, of which 64 per cent, or 477,762, were active ones. Some 80 per cent, or 383,276, of the active entities had submitted their financial accounts to the regulator.

CCM aims to achieve an 85 per cent compliance rate this year, and to further raise the target to 90 per cent in 2008.

"I am very confident of achieving our targets through enforcement, educational and outreach activities," Abdul Karim said.

In the second quarter of this year, CCM plans to launch its "e-Lodgement" online facility, which enables companies to be registered via the Internet.

CCM currently has the "e-info" service, which enables one to purchase company data from the regulator through the Internet.