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A little too free in the enterprise

Executives at Perbadanan Usahawan Nasional (PUNB) - Malaysia's National Entrepreneur Corporation - appear to have taken their remit rather too literally.

Unnamed senior officials at the state-funded agency, which aims to encourage indigenous Bumiputera business, seem to have been a little too enterprising with their sources of funding over attempts to issue $5 billion of unauthorised bonds.

The venture capital agency, which only has paid-up capital of M$100 million ($26 million), now finds itself at the centre of an investigation by Malaysia's anti-corruption agency after an executive was arrested on his return from Singapore.

Full details of what had been widely dubbed locally as a bond scam are still to materialise, but it seems that at least three senior PUNB officials were involved in the exercise.

In addition to company executives, a local businessman, a British national and a Singaporean have been implicated in the affair.

Fake bond certificates with a total face value amounting to $5 billion have been seized from PUNB offices.

A certificate is also reported to have been sent to an unnamed broker in London for marketing, with the intention it should be used as collateral against a loan.

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