The Companies Act, 2016 (“CA 2016”) is an important legislation that governs the functioning and operations of companies. It provides a comprehensive framework for the establishment, management, and regulation of companies. One of the important aspects of compliance under the CA 2016 is the requirement to file an Annual Return with the Companies Commission Malaysia (“CCM”). In this article, we will look into the significance of the Annual Return and explore the requirements of the Annual Return.  

What is the Annual Return? 

An Annual Return, as per the CA 2016, is a document that provides a summary of a company’s key information and activities during a specific financial year. It serves as a record of the company’s vital details, such as its registered office address, shareholding structure, board composition, financial performance, and compliance with statutory requirements. The Annual Return essentially presents a comprehensive overview of the company’s affairs, ensuring transparency and accountability. 

The filing of the Annual Return is important for companies, shareholders, and regulatory authorities alike. It acts to keep all stakeholders informed about the company’s operations, financial health, and adherence to legal obligations. By mandating the filing of Annual Returns, the company could promote its transparency, accountability, and good corporate governance. Additionally, the Annual Return serves as a valuable resource for investors, potential business partners, and lenders, as it provides them with relevant information to assess the company’s credibility and performance. 

The Key Components of Annual Return 

The Annual Return begins by capturing vital company details, including its name, registered office address, and contact information. These details help identify the company uniquely and establish its legal existence. Furthermore, it provides insight into any changes made to the company’s name or registered office address during the financial year. 

The Annual Return requires companies to disclose their shareholding structure and capital details. This section provides information about the company’s shareholders, the number of shares held by each shareholder, and any changes in the shareholding pattern during the year. It also outlines the company’s authorized and paid-up capital, showcasing the financial resources available to the company for its operations. 

Companies are required to disclose the particulars of their directors and key management personnel in the Annual Return. This includes the names, addresses, and dates of appointment/resignation of the directors, as well as details of the key managerial personnel. This section enables stakeholders to gain an understanding of the individuals responsible for the company’s management and decision-making processes. Any changes on the particular of the Director and Member are required to reflect on the Annual Return of the Company on the financial year the changes have been made.  

The Annual Return necessitates the inclusion of the particular indebtedness of the company that is required to include any charges that have been registered with the Registrar of Companies. The company is required to complete the nature of charges, the amount of the indebtedness, and the name of the chargee on the charges registered.  

The Annual Return serves to demonstrate the company’s compliance with various statutory requirements imposed by the CA 2016. This includes compliance with the provision of the Unclaimed Money Act 1965 and other regulations, the Annual Return acts as evidence of the company’s adherence to regulatory provisions. 

Submission Deadline and Process for Annual Return  

According to Section 68 of CA 2016, the Company has the duty to lodge with the Registrar an annual return for each calendar year not later than 30 days from the anniversary of its incorporation date. It is essential for companies to adhere to this timeline to avoid penalties or adverse consequences which may impose by the CCM. 

Failure to file the Annual Return within the prescribed timeline can result in severe consequences for companies. Regulatory authorities may impose penalties, fines, or legal actions against the non-compliant company and its directors. Additionally, late or non-filing of the Annual Return may adversely impact the company’s reputation, credibility, and business prospects. It is, therefore, crucial for companies to prioritize the timely and accurate submission of the Annual Return. 

To initiate the filing process for the Annual Return, companies must collect and organize the required information and documentation. This includes updated company details, shareholding records, financial statements, compliance records, and other relevant supporting documents. Thorough documentation ensures the accuracy and completeness of the Annual Return. 

Once the necessary information and documentation are gathered, companies can proceed with the preparation of the Annual Return. This involves careful compilation of the information into the prescribed format, ensuring accuracy, clarity, and compliance with applicable regulations. The prepared Annual Return should then be reviewed thoroughly to identify any errors, inconsistencies, or omissions that need to be rectified before submission. 

After the preparation and review process, the Annual Return is ready for submission to the CCM via the MBRS system. It is important to follow the prescribed submission procedure and ensure that all necessary supporting documents are included. 

If the Annual Return is found to contain information that is not able to justify by the officer of CCM, a query letter will be raised by the officer, and the company is required to further justify the information and resubmit with the CCM within 30 days from the date of receipt of the query letter. Any information that contains false information, misdescription, or erroneous information is required to do rectification by submitting the application to the registrar to rectify the information with a fee to be charged by the registrar. 


In conclusion, the filing of the Annual Return is a critical compliance requirement for companies governed by the Companies Act, 2016. It serves as a comprehensive document that contains a company’s key information and adherence to statutory obligations. By adhering to the prescribed submission deadline and diligently fulfilling the filing process, companies can demonstrate their commitment to transparency, accountability, and good corporate governance. The Annual Return not only provides valuable insights to stakeholders but also contributes to the overall reputation and credibility of the company in the business landscape.