Legal Updates

Legal Updates for Jan - 2017

China's Supreme People's Court Passes New Judicial Interpretations on the PRC Company Law

The Supreme People's Court of the People's Republic of China ("PRC") issued the Provisions on Several Issues Concerning the Application of the PRC Company Law (IV) (Draft for Public Consultation) (最高人民法院关于适用《中华人民共和国公司法》若干问题的规定(四)(征求意见稿)) ("Judicial Interpretation IV") on 12 April 2016 and passed the same on 5 December 2016 in principle. Judicial Interpretation IV provides further guidance on issues relating to the certain key aspects of the PRC Company Law. This Update provides a summary and analysis of Judicial Interpretation IV.

30 Jan 2017 | China

New Era in Oil & Gas Sector as Government Moves from Cost Recovery to Gross Split Mechanism

The Government has instituted a new mechanism for sharing out production from oil and gas fields as between the State and its contractors ("Contractor") under Production Sharing Contracts ("PSC"). The new "Gross Split" mechanism is set out in Minister of Energy & Mineral Resources Regulation No. 8 of 2017, which came into force on 16 January 2017, while the first PSC to employ the new arrangement was signed on 18 January 2017, covering the Offshore North West Java working area operated by state energy firm Pertamina, which had recently expired.

26 Jan 2017 | Indonesia

Registration Procedure and Protection of Geographical Indication Mark

On 29 December 2016, the Ministry of Commerce issued Prakas No. 422 MOC.IP.P on Registration Procedure and Protection of Geographical Indication Mark to implement Law NS/RKM/0114/006 on Geographical Indication Mark dated 20 January 2014.

25 Jan 2017 | Cambodia

A Claim for VAT Input Credit

On 20 December 2016, the General Department of Taxation has issued an Instruction No. 21406 GDT to make a point on a claim for VAT input credit for purchases of goods or services.

25 Jan 2017 | Cambodia

New Trademarks Law Enhances Indonesia's Intellectual Property Regime

The House of Representatives enacted the Trademarks Bill into law on 27 October 2016. The new legislation (the “2016 Trademarks Law”) had long been anticipated as it relates to the requirement under the ASEAN Economic Community accords for all ASEAN member countries to implement the 1989 Protocol to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks.

24 Jan 2017 | Indonesia

Are Individuals Who Work For Sharing Economy Businesses Employees Or Independent Contractors?

With the emergence of app-based companies such as Uber, Grab, Go Get, Kaodim and AirBnB, which provide digital platforms connecting individual service providers to clients, these individuals service providers are able to offer their services to clients as and when there is demand for the same.

Individual service providers are often thought to be self-employed or independent contractors. They are perceived as having the freedom to pick and choose the types of work that they wish to take on and they are not bound by restrictions which apply to an employee, for example standard working hours, fixed places of work and how the work is done.

However, is this really the case for companies that use digital platforms to connect the individual service provider with clients?

24 Jan 2017 | Malaysia

Employment Law – Key Changes to Take Note of in 2017
2017 sees the coming into effect of a number of changes to Singapore's employment legislation. We have provided in this update a summary of some key changes that will affect businesses in the new year. Businesses must update their HR policies to take into account these new changes, and more importantly, businesses are well advised to keep abreast of any new developments in this area to avoid falling foul of the law.
23 Jan 2017 | Singapore

Competition Bites - ASEAN & Beyond

2016, although a difficult year which saw new limits being pushed, remained one where competition regulators have been very busy, as was the last quarter. We strongly advocate businesses remain apprised of the competition developments and legislative changes as we move into the new year, to avoid any competition issues in their business activities and dealings. This is particularly critical for companies with businesses across many countries.

20 Jan 2017 | Malaysia

Competition Bites - ASEAN & Beyond

2016, although a difficult year which saw new limits being pushed, remained one where competition regulators have been very busy, as was the last quarter. We strongly advocate businesses remain apprised of the competition developments and legislative changes as we move into the new year, to avoid any competition issues in their business activities and dealings. This is particularly critical for companies with businesses across many countries.

20 Jan 2017 | Malaysia

Supreme Court Moves to Close Corporate Crime Loophole

The Supreme Court recently issued a regulation  setting out the procedures for handling criminal offenses committed by corporations. The new rules, which entered into force on 29 December 2016, provide a partial remedy to one of the most obvious deficiencies in Indonesian law, namely, the lack of a solid legal framework for addressing corporate crime. 

19 Jan 2017 | Indonesia

Short Detention Order Imposed for Offence under Section 157(1), Companies Act
In a recent decision of the Singapore District Court, a former President of Singapore Technologies Marine Ltd was acquitted of three charges of conspiracy for corruption. In a novel occurrence, the Court also imposed a community sentence of a short detention order for a charge of failing to use reasonable diligence as a director, instead of the traditional binary options of a jail term or a fine. The Defendant was represented by Hamidul Haq and Istyana Ibrahim from Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP.
19 Jan 2017 | Singapore

OJK Issues New Rule on Merger or Consolidation of Public Companies

On 23 December 2016, the Financial Services Authority (Otoritas Jasa Keuangan / “OJK”) issued OJK Regulation No. 74/POJK.04/2016 on the Merger or Consolidation of Public Companies (the “New Rule”). The New Rule, which revokes Bapepam Rule No. IX.G.1 on the Merger or Consolidation of Public Companies or Issuers, is aimed at simplifying the rules governing mergers or consolidations, and improving the quality of information disclosure. As such, it expands the information that must be contained in the disclosure so as to include:

a.  disclosure of the new controlling shareholders resulting from the merger or consolidation;
b.  additional information on changes in core business.

17 Jan 2017 | Indonesia

Singapore to Allow Third-Party Funding in International Arbitration
On 10 January 2017, the Singapore Parliament passed the Civil Law (Amendment) Bill 2016, which will allow third-party funding but only – at the moment – in the field of international (but not domestic) arbitration and related proceedings. The introduction of this option may provide a more viable route for certain disputants to pursue legitimate legal claims, taking into account issues of cash flow and the potentially high costs of dispute resolution. This Update takes a look at the amendments, as well as the key features and restrictions of the proposed third-party funding framework.
12 Jan 2017 | Singapore

Competition Bites – ASEAN & Beyond
A Happy New Year to all, as we share the latest competition news from the region and beyond. 2016, although a difficult year which saw new limits being pushed, remained one where competition regulators have been very busy, as was the last quarter. We strongly advocate businesses remain apprised of the competition developments and legislative changes as we move into the new year, to avoid any competition issues in their business activities and dealings. This is particularly critical for companies with businesses across many countries.
10 Jan 2017 | Singapore

Public Consultation on Proposed Amendments to the Companies Act, Limited Liability Partnerships Act and Accountants Act
The Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority of Singapore ("ACRA") and the Ministry of Finance ("MOF") are seeking feedback on proposed amendments to the Companies Act, Limited Liability Partnerships Act and the Accountants Act. The consultation ends on 13 January 2017.

In their press release, ACRA and MOF said that the proposed amendments seek to reduce the regulatory burden on business entities, improve the ease of doing business, and enhance the transparency of business entities. This update looks at the key proposed amendments.
09 Jan 2017 | Singapore

Conflict of Laws in Misselling Claims
In the case of Ong Ghee Soon Kevin v Ho Yong Chong [2016] SGHC 277, a banking customer brought a claim against a bank officer. Notably, the case raised numerous perplexing questions regarding conflicts of law, delving into the issues of choice of law, private international law vs domestic law, as well as tort law. This case is also the latest case in which the courts have dismissed claims of alleged misselling by a private banker. The private banker was successfully represented by Lai Yew Fei and Lee Hui Yi of Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP.
06 Jan 2017 | Singapore

China's Supreme People's Court Passes New Judicial Interpretations on the PRC Company Law
The Supreme People's Court of the People's Republic of China (the "PRC") issued the Provisions on Several Issues Concerning the Application of the PRC Company Law (IV) (Draft for Public Consultation) (最高人民法院关于适用《中华人民共和国公司法》若干问题的规定(四)(征求意见稿)) (the "Judicial Interpretation IV") on 12 April 2016 and passed the same on 5 December 2016 in principle. Judicial Interpretation IV provides further guidance on issues relating to the certain key aspects of the PRC Company Law. This Update provides a summary and analysis of Judicial Interpretation IV.
04 Jan 2017 | Singapore