Legal Updates for April 2019
The 5G Bandwagon: Legal and Regulatory Implications
On 3 April 2019, South Korea became the first country in the world to commercially launch nationwide 5G mobile services. On the same day, US operator Verizon began commercial services 5G services in two U.S. cities, Chicago and Minneapolis. While the industry has been abuzz with 5G for several years now, this is a pivotal point with the evolution of 5G from trial phase to commercial reality. In the last year, massive progress has been made towards the new network technology – the standards have been finalised and operators around the world are in the process of testing, trialling and rollout in some early stage markets. This Client Update provides a brief introduction to 5G, and highlights some of the legal and regulatory issues for discussion.
MAS Issues Consultation Paper on Payment Services Regulations
The payment services regulatory regime has been undergoing major reform, culminating in the new Payment Services Act ("PSA"), which was passed in Parliament on 14 January 2019. While the PSA sets out the main structure of the new regulatory framework, much of the operational details remain to be determined through subsidiary legislation. On 10 April 2019, the Monetary Authority of Singapore issued a Consultation Paper on certain draft regulations relating to the PSA. This Update looks at the key features of the proposed regulations.
TRADE BITES 2019 - Issue 1
Welcome to our revamped Trade Bites! In this first issue of the year, we discuss various developments, including the potential retaliation by the Indonesian government against the European Union if it curbs the use of palm oil in its biofuels, and the unusual trend of increasing volumes of shipments of US ethanol into Malaysia. The palm oil issue is also big in Malaysia. We also note developments in several of the South East Asian countries, relating to the anti-circumvention laws, tweaks in anti-dumping issues, managing of rules of origin given the new CPTPP and on sanctions, amongst others.
The Tripartite Guidelines on Wrongful Dismissal – What They Mean for Employers
On 1 April 2019, the latest round of amendments to the Employment Act came into force. The Ministry of Manpower has also published the Tripartite Guidelines on Wrongful Dismissal, which aim to provide guidance to employers and employees alike as to what constitutes wrongful dismissal. This Update will explain what these Guidelines mean for employers and how employers can protect themselves against wrongful dismissal claims.
Singapore Court Examines Implications of Retention of Title Clauses
Retention of title clauses have become an essential feature in contracts for the credit sale of goods. In Mitsubishi Corp RTM International Pte Ltd v Kyen Resources Pte Ltd  SGHCR 6, the Singapore High Court was faced with novel questions regarding how retention of title clauses may impact a seller’s claim for price. In particular, this was the first case in Singapore to consider the controversial decision by the UK Supreme Court in The Res Cogitans  AC 1034, which has had wide-ranging implications affecting the law on sale of goods in the UK. The Plaintiff here was successfully represented by Ting Yong Hong of Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP.
SGX RegCo Directs Former Independent Directors of ListCo to Explain Reasons for Resignation
In an unprecedented move, Singapore Exchange Regulation ("SGX RegCo") has directed the former independent directors of a listed company to give detailed explanations as to why they consider it proper and appropriate to resign when there are outstanding audit matters which raise serious concerns about the state of the company, that have yet to be resolved.
Independent directors should take note of this move by SGX RegCo, which sends a strong signal that SGX RegCo will not take resignations from independent directors lightly, and will take steps to ensure that their resignation from the Board can be supported by good reasons and do not jeopardise the interests of shareholders.
Payment Services Bill Passed in Parliament
On 14 January 2019, the Payment Services Bill (“PSB”) was passed in Parliament. The PSB will thus come into force on such date as appointed by notification in the Government Gazette. The PSB aims to streamline regulation of payment services under a single legislation, and to expand the scope of regulated payment services to keep up with new technological developments in payment services and the various risks they pose. This Update takes a look at the key features of the PSB.