Singapore is positioning itself as a hub for insolvency and restructuring. Imminent changes to Singapore's mediation landscape suggest that mediation will soon become one of the tools available to insolvency and restructuring practitioners in resolving their clients' concerns. Similarly, there is room for employing arbitration in specific types of dispute, which will assist with insolvency and restructuring matters and help to resolve them more expediently.
An online travel platform recently obtained Singapore's first super priority order for rescue financing pursuant to Section 211E(1)(b) of the Companies Act. This groundbreaking decision provides valuable guidance to insolvency practitioners regarding future applications for super priority rescue financing, which will hopefully increase the attractiveness of distressed financing as an investment opportunity in Singapore, fostering its development as an insolvency and restructuring hub.
The Singapore High Court recently delivered a landmark decision on the recognition of foreign bankruptcy proceedings and the public policy exception under the Singapore Model Law. In this groundbreaking decision, the court ruled on several matters relating to the law for the first time, including the relevant date and other factors for determining a debtor's centre of main interests.
The Companies Act was amended in May 2017 to introduce a number of improvements to Singapore's debt restructuring laws regarding super-priority status for rescue financing, schemes of arrangement, judicial management and cross-border insolvency. This article reviews the various court decisions (both reported and unreported) that have been issued since the changes became operative.
The much-anticipated Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Bill was recently passed. The bill aims to ensure that Singapore's restructuring and insolvency laws remain relevant and progressive to support its position as a global restructuring hub. The bill also represents the last phase of implementing recommendations from the Insolvency Law Review Committee and the Committee to Strengthen Singapore as an International Centre for Debt Restructuring.
The Singapore High Court recently delivered a landmark decision on the question of public policy under the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvency, as adopted by Singapore in the Tenth Schedule to the Companies Act (the Singapore Model Law). This is the first reported decision in which a Singapore court has been faced with the question of public policy in an application for recognition of a foreign insolvency proceeding.
A recent situation involving a judicial manager and the fate of the employees of a company under judicial management has come to light. The issue was whether to adopt the existing contracts of employment or to terminate them and execute fresh contracts. The judicial manager's liability was also discussed.
A recent decision has important implications for the law governing commercial property and construction agreements, as well as insolvency law. It provides purchasers of property with greater financial protection against developers. It also clarifies a party's right of set-off in an insolvency situation for pre-liquidation debts where the liquidator performs an existing contract.
There have been several recent significant decisions relating to bankruptcy law and practice rendered by the courts. They include discussion of when a statutory demand can be said to have been satisfactorily served on a debtor, and on whom the onus rests when proving a debtor's inability to pay.
The enactment of Section 99 of the Bankruptcy Act introduced a significant change to insolvency law, as it allows for the voiding of certain transactions entered into by a company before liquidation, if the transactions constitute an unfair preference given to some creditors over other creditors. A recent case follows the English approach.
The Bankruptcy (Amendment) Act 1999 makes changes to various areas of bankruptcy law, in-line with the encouragement of technopreneurial initiatives and ideas.