2021 Business Operations Updates
In response to the various restrictions and standard operating procedures that were imposed on Malaysian businesses starting in March 2020, we have been continually refining and enhancing our business processes and the supporting IT infrastructure to better adapt to the new working environment.
Our first priority is the health and safety of all our staff, clients and suppliers while we remain committed to providing best-in-class service. Here is a timeline of events in Malaysia in 2021.
01 – 14 January 2021
Following a significant spike in infections and the emergence of several new clusters, the National Security Council has announced a further extension of the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) until 14 January 2021 in three states of Malaysia, including Kuala Lumpur.
13 – 26 January 2021
In consideration of the current situation in the country, the Malaysian government has announced that it will re-impose a Movement Control Order (MCO) in much of the country, including Kuala Lumpur, for the two-week period from 13 through 26 January 2021. The MCO may be further extended if conditions necessitate. In the light of this development, effective 11 January 2021 our Malaysian team has reverted to a full work-from-home operation for the time being.
MyIPO’s Head Office in Kuala Lumpur will remain open daily Monday through Friday for manual filing but with limited operating hours of 9 am to 12 noon. As always, we shall be making maximum possible use of online filing options. We have established procedures in place for manual filing of any matters that cannot be completed online. However, due to the limited opening hours of MyIPO’s filing counters, early instructions are vitally important. Naturally, all instructions and reporting must be sent primarily through electronic communication, including advance colour scans of any necessary supporting documents.
For Malaysian trademark opposition proceedings, MyIPO has issued an official notice to the effect that all filing related to such proceedings is to be temporarily suspended for the duration of the MCO, including any future extension of the MCO.
27 January – 04 February 2021
On 21 January 2021, the Malaysian government announced that the MCO would be extended for a further period of 09 days until 04 February 2021. The operations of MyIPO and our Malaysian business remain the same as for the initial two-week term of the MCO.
05 – 18 February 2021
On 02 February 2021, Malaysia’s National Security Council based on advice from the Health Ministry announced that the current MCO would be extended for a further term of two weeks until 18 February 2021. For the health, safety and well-being of all our clients, suppliers and employees, our Malaysian team will continue to work primarily from home during the MCO.
For the duration of this further extension of the MCO, MyIPO’s Head Office in Kuala Lumpur have adjusted their opening hours for manual filing. The filing counter is now open daily Monday through Friday from 10 am to 2 pm.
19 February – 04 March 2021
On 16 February 2021, Malaysia’s National Security Council decided that the current MCO would be extended for a further term of two weeks until 04 March 2021 for four states of Peninsula Malaysia, including the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur. On the same day, the Malaysian Prime Minister launched the National Covid-19 Immunisation Plan. The rollout of the nation’s vaccination programme will start on 26 February 2021, with the first phase dedicated to the protection of frontliners.
05 – 31 March 2021
With a recent decline in reported infections and reduction in the total number of active cases, together with the ongoing rollout of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme, Kuala Lumpur and three other economic powerhouse states of Peninsula Malaysia exited the MCO. These states reverted to a Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) on 05 March 2021. The initial two-week term of this CMCO was later extended until 31 March 2021.
In March 2021, small teams of administrative staff will be working in our Kuala Lumpur office on a rotation basis while the majority of colleagues continue to work from home. We aim especially to tackle the sending out of original certificates that has become inevitably backlogged during our extended work-from-home period. We would like to thank all our clients and associates for their patience and understanding in this regard.
01 – 28 April 2021
On 30 March 2021, the National Security Council announced that the current CMCO in the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur (among other places) would be extended for another two weeks until 14 April 2021. On 12 April 2021, it was announced that the CMCO would be extended for another term of two weeks ending 28 April 2021.
Although the Government is rescinding the earlier work-from-home directive applicable to the private sector with effect from 01 April 2021, we have decided to maintain a hybrid work arrangement for the time being. While the majority of our colleagues continue to work from home, small teams of administrative staff will be working in our Kuala Lumpur office on a rotation basis.
Effective 01 April 2021, the manual filing counters of MyIPO’s Head Office in Kuala Lumpur have reverted to regular opening hours. The new operating hours are from 9 am to 3.30 pm Monday through Thursday and 9 am to 4 pm on Friday. Nevertheless, in keeping with the times, we shall continue to make full use of the online filing system whenever possible.
29 April 2021
On 27 April 2021, the National Security Council announced that the current CMCO in the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur (among other places) would be further extended until 17 May 2021.
Following a notable uptick in reported Covid-19 cases in Kuala Lumpur and the neighbouring state of Selangor, as a precaution the operations teams in our Malaysia office are reverting to a full work-from-home arrangement from May 2021 onwards.
As always, we continue to provide our full range of professional services while our teams are working remotely with 100% capacity and robust support systems in place.
We continue to closely monitor local developments so as to minimize the health risks for our staff, clients and suppliers.
06 – 20 May 2021
With the emergence of new clusters and in a bid to curb the rising numbers of daily Covid-19 cases that are stressing the healthcare system, the Malaysian Government has re-imposed a Movement Control Order (MCO) on Kuala Lumpur from 07 to 20 May 2021 and much of the neighbouring state of Selangor from 06 to 17 May 2021. These new Orders supersede the ongoing CMCOs and enforce tighter restrictions on travel and permitted activities.
Although the geographical scope of these MCOs affects all the employees of our Kuala Lumpur office, our remote-working arrangements are now finely tuned so we do not anticipate any major disruption to our business operations. However, we do request all clients and associates to send instructions well in advance of any deadline whenever possible, especially where original documents are involved and for matters that can only be attended through manual filing.
12 May – 07 June 2021
On 10 May 2021, Malaysia’s Prime Minister announced that the current MCO in Kuala Lumpur (among other places) would be extended nationwide, a decision he said was necessitated by rising Covid-19 case numbers. This nationwide lockdown shall take effect from 12 May to 07 June 2021. Economic activity is allowed to continue subject to strict application of SOPs, limits on workplace capacity and a prohibition on all forms of in-person events. Inter-state and inter-district travel is also severely restricted.
Our Kuala Lumpur office had voluntarily opted for a remote-working arrangement since the beginning of May, so this latest development has minimal impact on our business continuity plans. Additionally, MyIPO has maintained the current opening hours of its manual filing counters.
24 May 2021
On 22 May 2021, the National Security Council announced that new and tighter restrictions would be imposed under the nationwide Movement Control Order with effect from 25 May 2021. In particular, there is now a requirement for 80% of the public sector workforce and 40% of the private sector workforce to work from home, and the capacity of public transport will be reduced.
Additionally, starting 24 May 2021, the manual filing counter of MyIPO’s head office in Kuala Lumpur has reverted to shortened operating hours of 9 am to 1 pm Monday to Friday.
01 June 2021
On 28 May 2021, Malaysia’s Prime Minister announced that the country would enter the first phase of a total national lockdown from 01 to 14 June 2021. Over this period, among the economic sectors, only those relating to essential services will be permitted to operate. On 11 June 2021, it was announced that the total lockdown would be extended for a further term of two weeks from 15 to 28 June 2021. Then, on 27 June 2021 the Prime Minister announced that the total lockdown would continue until the conditions for entering the second phase of the National Recovery Plan were met.
MyIPO has announced that their headquarters in Kuala Lumpur and all branch offices will be closed. MyIPO’s online services will continue to be available. Henry Goh’s Malaysia teams will continue to provide professional services under our current work-from-home arrangement.
10 September 2021
On 10 September 2021, the Federal Territories of Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya and the neighbouring state of Selangor entered the second phase of the National Recovery Plan, based on factors such as the high levels of vaccination of the adult population and reduced occupancy of hospital beds.
This second phase allows for further opening up of the economy as well as the removal of certain travel restrictions and limits on physical activities imposed under the first phase. Nevertheless, our HG Malaysia teams will continue to work remotely until further notice.
Additionally, since August 2021 the manual filing counter of MyIPO’s headquarters in Kuala Lumpur has been open in a limited capacity and by appointment only, enabling in particular the collection of official documents that are still issued in hard copy.
23 September 2021
Effective 23 September 2021, the manual filing counter of MyIPO’s headquarters in Kuala Lumpur is open daily from Monday to Friday. An advance appointment is no longer necessary. This change will facilitate the delivery of documents for which digital channels are not available. However, the opening hours of the filing counter remain limited to 9 am to 3 pm Monday to Thursday and 9 am to 12.30 pm on Friday.
01 October 2021
On 01 October 2021, the whole of the Klang Valley, which includes Kuala Lumpur, entered the third phase of the National Recovery Plan. In line with this positive development, from 04 October 2021 Henry Goh Malaysia is reverting to a hybrid working arrangement. While the majority of our colleagues continue to work remotely, our physical offices in Kuala Lumpur will re-open and small teams of administrative staff will be working there on a rotation basis. All colleagues in the office are fully vaccinated and we are taking the utmost precautions for everyone’s health and safety.
01 November 2021
In mid-October, Kuala Lumpur entered the fourth and final phase of Malaysia’s National Recovery Plan. In line with that transition, effective 01 November 2021 the manual filing counter of MyIPO’s head office has reverted to regular operation hours of 9 am to 4.30 pm Monday to Friday, and is also now open for all categories of business.
[Last updated: 02 November 2021]