Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)

Why ESG is Important

As climate change, social and governance awareness have grown tremendously on a global scale over the past decade, public authorities and governmental agencies in Malaysia have already begun looking into developing regulations and policies relating to the Environment, Social Accountability and Governance (or more commonly referred to as ESG), while entities in the private sector, on their own initiative or otherwise, are increasingly taking into account ESG factors in their analysis factors to identify material risks and growth opportunities for the business. Looking ahead, we will see a progressive and conscientious trend in seeking out and evaluating investments which prioritise the ESG factors and principles, or more commonly referred to as ESG Investing.

Our Experience

Being a full-service legal firm, we are committed to grow and transform in line with the demands and expectations of our clients. To this end, we offer strong legal support to our clients in the major aspects of ESG and assist them in fulfilling their ESG obligations, ranging from developing and reviewing existing company policies, identifying risk factors and offering mitigating solutions by conducting tailored ESG due diligence on our clients, advising on business opportunities and project development in the renewable energy sector, to navigating the legal and regulatory requirements and, with the support of external experts, where appropriate, advising on relevant standards with regard to environment, social accountability and corporate governance.

The various practices in RDL have long advised on related legal and regulatory requirements surrounding environmental, social and governance issues. We have conducted due diligence and advised on various aspects of Malaysian environmental laws, regulations and/or policies. We regularly advise on and draft policies dealing with corporate governance principles and processes, anti-bribery and corruption, anti-money laundering and whistleblowing policies and processes and, through regular requests from clients, support and conduct due diligence / audits and awareness trainings on anti-bribery and corruption; anti competition law (including dawn raid training and policies) and whistleblowing principles to name a few examples. On the social front, our previous experience includes advising on potential collaborations involving ESG initiatives; advising on local labour law conditions in comparison to the standards set by ILO in particular in relation to child labour and modern slavery; participating as panel member of panel of inquiry on workplace/ work environment related issues and preparation of report on recommendations for improvement; advising on occupational health and safety obligations to ensure compliance with local employment and labour law requirements including the drafting and review of occupational health and safety policies; advisory support on issues surrounding the legality of the retention of travel documents of foreign workers, retention of a deposit sum as collateral for home leave of foreign workers as well as the collection of administration fees by local agents; conducting employee training on workplace sexual harassment as part of a client’s compliance week. The strength lies in RDL’s various specialist practice groups who work to provide a seamless support to our clients seeking to improve their ESG agenda.

Contacts

Management Partner – Head of Corporate & Commercial
(Member of the Firm’s Executive Committee)
+603-2632 9873

chewphyekeat@rdl.com.my

Partner – Corporate & Commercial
+603-2632 9882

joyceteh@rdl.com.my

Partner – Dispute Resolution, Employment & Industrial Relations
+603-2632 9875

livyen@rdl.com.my

Partner – Dispute Resolution, Construction, Infrastructure & Energy
+603-2632 9880

horshirley@rdl.com.my

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