Legal Updates

Legal Updates for Mar - 2019

Revamp of Foreign Investment Laws in China: More Opportunities or Challenges?

With the curtain falling on the Second Session of the Thirteenth National People's Congress ("NPC") of the People's Republic of China ("PRC"), the PRC Foreign Investment Law (中华人民共和国外商投资法, "Foreign Investment Law") was, as widely anticipated previously, passed by the NPC on 15 March 2019, and will come into effect from 1 January 2020. The Foreign Investment Law symbolises a landmark change of PRC laws regulating the activities of foreign investment and foreign-invested enterprises ("FIEs") in China. Foreign investors and FIEs should understand what this new law focuses on and what issues are yet to be resolved, so that they may know what opportunities and challenges they face with this new chapter of foreign investment legislation in China.

29 Mar 2019 | China

PDPC-CCCS Discussion Paper on Data Portability
On 25 February 2019, the Personal Data Protection Commission in collaboration with the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore, issued a discussion paper on the introduction of a data portability requirement in Singapore as part of an ongoing review of the Personal Data Protection Act 2012. This Update provides a summary of the Discussion Paper and focuses on the implications of a data portability requirement from a data protection and competition law perspective.
28 Mar 2019 | Singapore

A New Law on Public-Private Partnerships

The Public-Private Partnership Act B.E. 2562 (2019) (“PPP Act”) came into force on 11 March 2019, revoking the Private Investment in State Undertakings Act B.E. 2556 (2013). The stated purpose for the promulgation of the PPP Act is to have a clear and certain state policy in arranging infrastructure and public services by aiming for public-private joint investment on the basis of public-private partnership, and to determine mechanisms for solving problems, obstacles or delays in undertaking joint investment projects. This Update provides a summary of the provisions of the PPP Act

26 Mar 2019 | Thailand

Public Consultation on Converged Competition Code for the Media and Telecommunication Markets
On 20 February 2019, the Info-communications Media Development Authority published its consultation paper on a converged competition code for the media and telecommunication market. The development of a harmonised competition code that applies to both the Singapore telecommunication and media markets marks a further step towards taking a holistic approach to regulation and competition management of the two sectors. In this Update, we provide a summary and our high-level comments on the key proposals put forth by the IMDA in its Consultation Paper.
20 Mar 2019 | Singapore

Revamp of Foreign Investment Laws in China: More Opportunities or Challenges?
With the curtain falling on the Second Session of the Thirteenth National People’s Congress (“NPC”) of the People’s Republic of China (“PRC”), the PRC Foreign Investment Law (中华人民共和国外商投资法, “Foreign Investment Law”) was, as widely anticipated previously, passed by the NPC on Friday, 15 March 2019, and will come into effect from 1 January 2020. The Foreign Investment Law symbolises a landmark change of PRC laws regulating the activities of foreign investment and foreign-invested enterprises (“FIEs”) in China. Foreign investors and FIEs should understand what this new law focuses on and what issues are yet to be resolved, so that they may know what opportunities and challenges they face with this new chapter of foreign investment legislation in China.
20 Mar 2019 | Singapore

New Execution Guideline For The District Courts Aims To Simplify Execution Process

In February 2019, the Supreme Court, through the Directorate General of the General Judiciary issued a new guideline for the implementation of execution in district courts ("Guideline").

The application for and implementation of execution in Indonesia is a lengthy process and often, it may even exceed the duration of the trial. The Guideline aims to ease and to expedite the execution process, particularly for civil court decisions, mediation/settlement resolutions, arbitration awards, decisions from labor court (Pengadilan Hubungan Industrial), competition authority (Komisi Pengawas Persaingan Usaha), consumer dispute settlement agency (Badan Penyelesaian Sengketa Konsumen), information commission (Komisi Informasi), as well as executorial deed (grosse akta) and security execution (eksekusi jaminan).

18 Mar 2019 | Indonesia

New Execution Guideline For The District Courts Aims To Simplify Execution Process

In February 2019, the Supreme Court, through the Directorate General of the General Judiciary issued a new guideline for the implementation of execution in district courts ("Guideline").

The application for and implementation of execution in Indonesia is a lengthy process and often, it may even exceed the duration of the trial. The Guideline aims to ease and to expedite the execution process, particularly for civil court decisions, mediation / settlement resolutions, arbitration awards, decisions from labor court (Pengadilan Hubungan Industrial), competition authority (Komisi Pengawas Persaingan Usaha), consumer dispute settlement agency (Badan Penyelesaian Sengketa Konsumen), information commission (Komisi Informasi), as well as executorial deed (grosse akta) and security execution (eksekusi jaminan).

18 Mar 2019 | Indonesia

Proof Of Trusts In Family Settings
In the context of family property, or the property of family-owned companies, arrangements regarding ownership tend to be more informal and less likely to be recorded in writing or legal documentation. In Geok Hong Co Pte Ltd v Koh Ai Gek and others [2019] SGCA 15, the Court of Appeal reversed the decision of the High Court that a property registered in the name of a family-owned company was held on trust for one of the sons of the founder. The striking feature of this case was that the claim rested largely on an alleged oral representation from the founder of the company to the son around 1977, but both individuals had passed away, raising significant evidential challenges. The company was represented by Lee Eng Beng S.C. and John Seow of Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP in its successful appeal.
18 Mar 2019 | Singapore

The Singapore International Commercial Court Rules on Singapore’s First Cryptocurrency-Related Dispute
The Singapore International Commercial Court finds cryptocurrency exchange operator, Quoine Pte Ltd, liable for breach of contract and breach of trust in unilaterally reversing a customer’s BTC/ETH trades, in the first cryptocurrency-related dispute that has come before the Singapore Courts. In B2C2 Ltd v Quoine Pte Ltd [2019] SGHC(I) 03, the Court delved into novel issues relating to cryptocurrencies and emerging technologies. Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP’s specialists in financial services disputes, Danny Ong, Sheila Ng and Jason Teo, acted for the successful Plaintiff.
15 Mar 2019 | Singapore

New Personal Data Protection Act

On 28 February 2019, the National Legislative Assembly voted 161-0 with 5 abstentions to approve the draft Personal Data Protection Act (“PDPA”) in its third and final reading. The stated reason for the promulgation of the PDPA is because there have been many violations of personal data rights and such violations cause damage to the economy as a whole. Due to advancements in technology, it is necessary to enact a law to make the collection, compilation, use and disclosure of personal data easy, convenient and prompt. This Update sets out a summary of the provisions of the approved draft PDPA.

15 Mar 2019 | Thailand

Commercial Litigation in 2018
As part of Singapore's growing role as a centre for dispute resolution in Asia, the Singapore courts have taken on novel cases spanning various areas of the law. In 2018, the courts have issued noteworthy decisions in the field of commercial litigation, taking on the task of further developing commercial law in the jurisdiction. Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP has had the opportunity to be involved in a number of these cases before the Singapore courts. In this Update, we look at some of the firm's notable decisions in commercial litigation from 2018.
14 Mar 2019 | Singapore

Important Singapore Judgment on Collision Liability
Disputes on ship collision and apportionment of liability tend to be fairly complex, with the heavy involvement of issues of law and facts. While Singapore judgments on collision liability have been sparse in the past years, the Singapore Courts have seen a recent spate of cases dealing with ship collisions. The most recent of these is The “Mount Apo” and the “Hanjin Ras Laffan” [2019] SGHC 57. The “Hanjin Ras Laffan”, where liability was determined in her favour, was represented by Leong Kah Wah and Dedi Affandi of Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP. This Update provides a summary of the proceedings and its evidential challenges, as well as the key elements of the judgment.
14 Mar 2019 | Singapore

Novel Decision on Retention of Property Seized for Investigations
Law enforcement agencies routinely seize properties for the purposes of investigations. However, what is the extent of the law enforcement agency’s power to withhold possession of such property? What is the role of the Courts in policing the law enforcement agencies’ exercise of power? These questions were considered by the High Court in a ground-breaking decision, Lee Chen Seong Jeremy and others v Public Prosecutor [2019] SGHC 48, which sets out for the first time the appropriate procedure to be applied by the Court in all future applications concerning the law enforcement agency’s application for continued extension of seized properties. The Petitioners in this case were successfully represented by Adrian Wong and Ang Leong Hao of Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP.
13 Mar 2019 | Singapore

New Regulations Target Businesses to Tackle Electronic, Packaging and Food Waste
The new Resource Sustainability Bill ("Bill") will see new measures implemented to tackle electronic, packaging and food waste. The Bill will affect a wide range of businesses and impact business operations. With proper and advance planning, businesses can keep their compliance costs to a minimum. The measures are anticipated to take effect in 2021.
12 Mar 2019 | Singapore

Are There Opportunities In A Trade War?

The US-China trade war has seen both countries engaged in a tit-for-tat imposition of tariff sanctions across a wide range of products. Many companies have started to change their logistics and supply chains to take advantage of favourable trade laws that can mitigate the impact of the US-China tariffs. This Update explores the economic opportunities that this trade war has created for the ASEAN region and how local businesses can take advantage.

11 Mar 2019 | Malaysia

Securities Commission Malaysia Seeks Public Feedback on Proposed Initial Coin Offering and Property Crowdfunding Regulatory Frameworks

In this Technology, Media and Telecommunications Update, we wish to bring your attention to two consultation papers issued by the Securities Commission Malaysia (“SC”) on 6 March 2019:

  1. Public Consultation Paper No. 1/2019 - Proposed Regulatory Framework for the Issuance of Digital Assets Through Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs); and
  2. Public Consultation Paper No. 2/2019 - Proposed Regulatory Framework for Property Crowdfunding.

The Public Consultation Paper on ICOs discusses the proposed regulatory framework for the eligibility of issuers, the need for transparent and adequate disclosures as well as utilisation of proceeds from ICOs, whereas the Public Consultation Paper on Property Crowdfunding follows on from the announcement of Budget 2019, which identified crowdfunding platforms as an avenue of alternative funding for first-time homebuyers. Feedback and comments must be submitted by 29 March 2019.

07 Mar 2019 | Malaysia

Legalisation Of Crypto-Asset In Indonesia

The Indonesian Supervisory Board of Futures Commodities Trading, or commonly known as Bappebti, recently legalised the crypto-asset trading market in Indonesia by issuing Regulation No. 5 of 2019 on Technical Provisions on the Implementation of Physical Market for Crypto-Assets ("Regulation"). The enactment of the Regulation is aimed at giving certainty to the digital commodity market, in line with the increased trading of various crypto-assets in Indonesia.

04 Mar 2019 | Indonesia

Legalisation Of Crypto-Asset In Indonesia

The Indonesian Supervisory Board of Futures Commodities Trading, or commonly known as Bappebti, recently legalised the crypto-asset trading market in Indonesia by issuing Regulation No. 5 of 2019 on Technical Provisions on the Implementation of Physical Market for Crypto-Assets ("Regulation"). The enactment of the Regulation is aimed at giving certainty to the digital commodity market, in line with the increased trading of various crypto-assets in Indonesia.

04 Mar 2019 | Indonesia

COMPETITION BITES 2019 - Issue 1
Welcome to our refreshed version of Competition Bites, providing you with updates of key developments primarily across South East Asia! The change this year sees a different approach for our quarterly competition law updates. We will now have short snippets of interesting competition law developments and include a feature article that describes the update in greater detail. Focus for this issue – Thailand’s new rules on merger controls. With the introduction of these rules, Thailand becomes the fifth country with an active merger control regime that must be analysed when transactions are being undertaken, whether in Thailand or across the world.
04 Mar 2019 | Singapore