eOASIS is Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP's legal information website for clients, containing business and legal information prepared from a practitioner's viewpoint. It has four different modules, updated regularly, and materials range from commentaries on the latest legal developments to key legal and business information.
Managing Greenwashing Risks: A Southeast Asian Lens
As governments, corporates and individuals double down on efforts on their sustainability and environmental, social and governance (ESG) agenda, there are emerging concerns of "greenwashing" and whether products and services labelled as "green" or "sustainable" are indeed so. What exactly is "greenwashing" and are there legal and regulatory frameworks in place to deal with this?
In this Guide, we aim to provide you with the state of play in the greenwashing legal landscape from a Southeast Asian perspective. Each Country Chapter provides a summary of the existing laws and regulations in each of the nine Southeast Asia jurisdictions that are available for enforcing against greenwashing, as well as some of their key regulators' approaches and initiatives to set clear and enforceable standards on green claims, green credentials, green products or green investments.
Reiterating the Procedural and Substantive Requirements for a Moratorium for Schemes of Arrangement
The Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Act 2018 (2020 Rev Ed) allows companies intending to propose a scheme of arrangement to apply to court for a moratorium, during which proceedings against the company would be restrained so as to allow breathing room for its restructuring efforts. In Re All Measure Technology (S) Pte Ltd (RHB Bank Bhd, non-party)  SGHC 148, the Singapore High Court reiterated the applicable principles regarding the granting of a moratorium, including the procedural and substantive requirements.
The Court here dismissed an application for a moratorium, finding that the applicant had not complied with both the procedural and substantive requirements. Sim Kwan Kiat, Walter Yeo and Timothy Ang from Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP represented two of the opposing creditors in this application. Walter Yeo successfully argued the case for the main opposing creditor.
Towards the Harmonised Service of Documents Abroad - Singapore Accedes to the Hague Service Convention
On 16 May 2023, Singapore acceded to the Hague Convention of 15 November 1965 on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters ("Service Convention"), which provides a harmonised set of rules for the service of judicial and extrajudicial documents abroad. This means that litigants in Singapore will be able to utilise the simplified mechanism for service of documents on parties from other Contracting Parties to the Service Convention, providing for a more streamlined and cost-efficient process.
The Ministry of Law has stated that the Service Convention will enter into force on 1 December 2023 for Singapore. In this Update, we highlight the key features of the Service Convention and what it will mean for litigants in Singapore.
MAS Proposes Amendments to Subsidiary Legislation to Operationalise Revisions to Payment Services Act
On 8 May 2023, the Monetary Authority of Singapore issued a consultation paper ("Consultation Paper") on proposed amendments to the Payment Services Regulations 2019, existing notices applicable to payment service providers, and new proposed Regulations on exemptions for a specified period, in order to operationalise the amendments to the Payment Services Act 2019 ("PS Act") that were passed under the Payment Services (Amendment) Act 2021 ("Amendment Act") when they come into effect. Comments on the Consultation Paper must be submitted by 8 June 2023.
The Payment Services (Amendment) Bill was passed on 4 January 2021 and subsequently gazetted as the Amendment Act. On the date the Amendment Act comes into effect, the Amendment Act will make several key changes to the PS Act. In particular, the scope of payment services regulated under the PS Act will be expanded. The Amendment Act will also make other changes to the PS Act to align with the enhanced standards adopted by the Financial Action Task Force Standards applicable to digital payment token service providers to address money laundering and terrorism financing risks.
This Update highlights the key proposals in the Consultation Paper.
Data & Digital Economy: Beyond the Hype of the Metaverse
The latest feature in the line-up of 'next-big-things' has been the advent of the metaverse, which has promised to revolutionise lifestyle, commerce, and business. But as the hype cycle runs its course, and the industry begins to question the actual impact of the metaverse, it becomes increasingly important to look beyond the superficial and towards what the metaverse truly represents – the continued and exponential digitalisation of the world around us. From that vantage point, we can strip back the buzz and begin to see the real legal issues at play, which all revolve around the common axis of Data and Digital Economy. With the incremental advancement of the Data and Digital Economy space, individuals and businesses will be faced with both opportunities and challenges. The commercial and investment opportunities associated with digitalisation and the metaverse are vast, and businesses would be well advised to begin preparatory steps towards capitalising on such prospects.
However, this may be easier said than done. The developmental and exploratory nature of Data and Digital Economy means that there will be uncertainties abound regarding how to operate in this unfamiliar space. In particular, users and businesses will have to grapple with complex legal issues spanning numerous areas of law – issues that will require multi-disciplinary expertise to effectively navigate. In this article, we take a closer look at Data and Digital Economy and the concept of the metaverse, the various sectors to explore opportunities that may arise, as well as the respective legal issues that will undoubtedly be intertwined with such opportunities.