Shipping in Malaysia

Christopher & Lee Ong

Christopher & Lee Ong acts on a range of issues including marine casualty management, investigations of regulatory issues and marine pollution liability for ship owners, charterers, cargo owners and insurers. Jainil Bhandari leads the team and is present on shipping disputes alongside Clive Selvapandian, an expert on dispute resolution, who is active on litigation and arbitration, including insurance claims and dry shipping and maritime disputes. The firm also advises on oil shipment and trading matters.

Practice head(s):

Jainil Bhandari

Other key lawyers:

Clive Selvapandian

Key clients

Marine & General Berhad

Rajah and Tann Singapore LLP

WK Webster (International) Pte Ltd

Emas Victoria (L) Berhad

Work highlights

  • Acted for Emas Victoria (L) Berhad,  the second Defendant shipowners, whose vessel was arrested by the Plaintiff. The dispute involves issues relating to the court’s jurisdiction.

Joseph & Partners

Joseph & Partners advises clients on transactional and contentious shipping matters. The firm is active locally and internationally on the registration and licensing of ships, inspection of ships’ safety and flag state, and regulatory shipping issues. Jeremy M Joseph is leading the team and handles marine claims.

Practice head(s):

Jeremy M Joseph

Sativale Mathew Arun

Sativale Mathew Arun is present on a range of shipping work, both contentious and non-contentious matters. This includes ship registrations, offshore marine issues and marine arbitration. Managing partner Raj Sativale heads up the team and is a specialist on all aspects of shipping law.

Practice head(s):

Raj Sativale

Shearn Delamore & Co

Shearn Delamore & Co acts for freight forwarders, logistics companies, ship owners, offshore and marine companies. The firm advises on the full range of shipping matters with expertise and experience in transactional and contentious issues. Rajasingam Gothandapani is leading the team and has assisted clients on salvage and collision claims, regulatory issues and shipbuilding. His clients include banks, shipyards and shipowners.

Practice head(s):

Rajasingam Gothandapani 

Key clients

The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited of Singapore

Shook Lin & Bok LLP, Singapore

Bintulu Port Holdings Berhad

Samalaju Industrial Port Sdn. Bhd.

MMC Corporation

Legal Solutions LLC

Dialog Group

Johor Port Berhad


Skrine's practice offers contentious and non-contentious shipping expertise. The group is headed up by Siva Kumar Kanagasabai and Fariz Abdul Aziz. On the contentious side Kanagasabai advises clients in the local and international sphere, on  ship arrests, charterparty disputes and oil pollution claims. On the non-contentious side Aziz handles ship registrations, ship sales and other advisory aspects dealing with shipping and maritime law.

Key clients

Cosco Shipping Lines (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd

Credit Suisse AG. Instructing solicitors: Watson Farley & Williams (London)

Icon Ship Management Sdn Bhd

Penguin International Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for Icon Ship Management Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Icon Offshore Berhad, in a claim arising out of a shipbuilding dispute filed by Labuan Shipyard Engineering for damages in the sum of RM13,940,558.85, plus interests and costs.
  • Represented Credit Suisse AG in respect of their enforcement of a ship mortgage against a vessel “Pomer” for sums outstanding of US$24,437,313.34 (excluding interests and costs) under a loan agreement, secured by the ship mortgage.
  • Acted for Penguin International Limited in respect of its purchase (via its subsidiary Pelican Offshore Malaysia Corporation) of 2 Malaysian flagged offshore support vessels from Alkahfi Lestari Oil & Gas Sdn Bhd, in a deal worth approximately SGD 7 million.

T S Oon & Partners

T S Oon & Partners has expertise across shipbuilding, dry and wet shipping, marine insurance and admiralty disputes. Managing partner Oon Thian Seng heads up the team and is noted for his experience in marine insurance matters as well as maritime and shipping law expertise. Jessica Teng is a key partner in the practice and also provides a specialism in shipping disputes.

Practice head(s):

Oon Thian Seng

Other key lawyers:

Jessica Teng

Rahayu Partnership

Rahayu Partnership is noted for wet and dry shipping, admiralty proceedings, crisis management and transactional work. Rahayu binti Abd Ghani is head of the practice and represents her clients in shipping, admiralty and insurance cases. She has defended arbitration claims in shipbuilding disputes and pursued claims over breaches of charterparty terms. The firm has also acted in debt recovery actions in the High Court of Kuala Lumpur.

Practice head(s):

Rahayu binti Abd Ghani

Work highlights

  • Assisted the client, who was the initial salvor for MV Amanda which sank on 26.12.2018, to claim for the salvage services provided to MV Amanda. Applied to the Admiralty Court to arrest the wreck underwater and divers were appointed by the Admiralty Court to serve the arrest warrant on MV Amanda.
  • Acting on behalf of the shipowner in a ship collision matter.

Shaikh David & Co

Shaikh David & Co 'is unique in that it acts for a wide spectrum of shipping clients.' These include marine insurers, shipyards and offshore energy companies. The team is being led by the 'razor-sharp' James P. David who acts on shipping and international trade matters, representing liability insurers as well as port authorities. His work includes disputes such as collisions and casualties and insurance matters for shipowners.

Practice head(s):

James P. David


‘SDC’s shipping practice is unique in that it acts for a wide spectrum of shipping clients from P&I Clubs, shipyards, offshore energy companies to marine insurers. They have the necessary bench strength to handle the most complex shipping disputes as well as run of the mill bread and butter shipping work.’

‘James David is the lead partner and is certainly one of the best shipping lawyers I have worked with in Malaysia. He balances acute business acumen and razor-sharp legal knowledge when providing advice and recommendation to clients.’

Key clients

FGV Holdings Berhad

Tokio Marine Insurans (Malaysia) Berhad

Chubb Insurance Malaysia Berhad

QBE Insurance (M) Berhad

MSIG Insurance (Malaysia) Bhd

Deloitte Corporate Solutions

Shipowners P&I Club

Cockett Marine Oil

Marsh / JLT Insurance Brokers

Gard P&I Club

Spica Services (M)

State Insurance Brokers

Sea Asia Claim Services


Penang Port

Port of Tanjung Pelepas

Johor Port

Lockton Insurance Brokers

Pacific & Orient Insurance

Swiss Re

Berkley Insurance Asia

Louis Dreyfus Commodities Asia

LF Logistics

Eureko Sigorta Insurance

Allianz Re

China Taiping Insurance

AIG Insurance

Work highlights

  • Representing FGV Holdings Berhad in a claim against receivers and owners of vessels Arbitrations in Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong. Orchestrated the claims against 3 separate parties in several jurisdictions including the US, Panama, Macau and China in respect of supporting actions.
  • Advising FGV Holdings Berhad in relation to petition by Grant & Eisenhofer ESG Institute to blacklist clients under the US Tariff Acts at all US ports and points of entry.

Tommy Thomas

Tommy Thomas acts on ship arrests, ship collisions and charterparty litigation. Clients include maritime agencies and government ministries. Sitpah Selvaratnam is leading the team. She is highly experienced in cargo disputes and marine insurance issues, with over twenty years of experience.

Practice head(s):

Sitpah Selvaratnam

Azmi & Associates

Azmi & Associates has long-standing experience in all facets of contentious and non-contentious shipping and maritime matters including marine insurance. It assists its clients are areas such as ship arrests, collisions, cargo and P&I claims and arbitrations. Practice head Philip Teoh has some decades of experience in shipping, logistics and international trade matters.

Practice head(s):

Philip Teoh

Rahmat Lim & Partners

Rahmat Lim & Partners' shipping practice undertakes work on sale, registration and de-registration of vessels. On the contentious side, litigators deal with the repossession of vessels and arbitration relating to casualties. Daphne Koo is a specialist on admiralty and maritime law while Chong Boon Leong appears in the Singaporean and Malaysian courts on international arbitration matters. Soh Yin Chuin focuses on maritime matters, advising lenders and trusts.

Practice head(s):

Daphne Koo; Soh Yin Chuin

Other key lawyers:

Chong Boon Leong

Work highlights

  • Advised a syndicate of lenders as Malaysian counsel in relation to the accession of Seadrill Offshore Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. and Seadrill Labuan Ltd. to a US$950,000,000 senior secured credit facilities agreement with Seadrill Rig Holding Company Limited as borrower, and the provision of security including, among other things, account charges and assignment of earnings relating to the charter of an ultra deepwater drilling unit by these Malaysian subsidiaries.
  • Advised Standard Chartered Bank (Singapore) Limited, BNP Paribas, DBS Bank Ltd., ING Bank, a Branch of ING-DiBa AG, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Limited, SG Asset Finance (Hong Kong) Limited and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Labuan Branch on refinancing of a US$575 million revolving credit facility granted to a wholly-owned subsidiary of AET Tanker Holdings Sdn. Bhd Advised as Malaysian counsel to Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Limited as facility and security agent on behalf of a syndicate of banks in relation to the refinancing of a US$575 million revolving credit facility granted to a wholly-owned subsidiary of AET Tanker Holdings Sdn. Bhd. for the financing of AET’s newbuild tankers and vessel acquisition programme.
  • Advising Credit Suisse AG, Singapore Branch, Taichung Commercial Bank Co., Ltd., Labuan Branch, Taishin International Bank Co. Ltd., Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank Co., Ltd. Singapore Branch and Banco do Brasil S.A., Singapore Branch on facilities of up to an aggregate amount of US$200 million to Yinson International Pte. Ltd. for the purposes of financing, among other things, the deployment of Floating Production Storage and Offloading systems in Brazil, Ghana and Nigeria.