Wilson Ang

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Financial services regulation and ESG: Regulation Around the World

In this latest edition of Regulation Around the World we review recent steps that financial services regulatory authorities have taken as regards Environmental, Social and Governance measures focussing in particular on disclosures, greenwashing and taxonomy.… Continue Reading

Recovery and Resolution: Regulation Around the World

In this latest edition of Regulation Around the World we review the position regarding recovery and resolution for banks. Following the 2008 global financial crisis, the G20 leaders endorsed at the Cannes Summit in November 2011, the Financial Stability Board’s Key Attributes of Effective Resolution Regimes for Financial Institutions as the international standard for resolution … Continue Reading

New briefing note: Regulation and lending during a cost of living crisis: Five global themes

In many jurisdictions there has been heightened regulatory scrutiny on how financial institutions are dealing with borrowers in financial difficulty. When looking at the statements and criticisms’ that the regulators have made and what institutions themselves have self-identified, the issues may revolve around five key themes – vulnerable customers, due diligence/understanding customers, forbearance, communications and … Continue Reading

Singapore toughens laws to combat financial crime and money laundering

On 9 May 2023, the Singapore Parliament passed amendments to the Corruption, Drug Trafficking and Other Serious Crimes (Confiscation of Benefits) Act 1992 (CDSA) which will introduce significant new offences of rash and negligent money laundering. Under the current law, the successful prosecution of money mules (i.e., those who assist with the transfer of illicit funds … Continue Reading

Beneficial ownership registers: Regulation Around the World

In this edition of Regulation Around the World we review the position regarding beneficial ownership registers which has come into the spotlight following work by the Financial Action Task Force and the introduction of reforms in a number of jurisdictions. Identifying beneficial owners has always been a difficult task for both regulators and financial institutions … Continue Reading

Further details on measures and guidance regarding Singapore’s unilateral sanctions on Russia in response to its invasion of Ukraine

This post is updated as of 16 March 2022. Introduction On 5 March 2022, the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs (“MFA”) unveiled specific measures to be imposed on Russia in response to its invasion of Ukraine.[1]  This follows the earlier announcement on 28 February 2022 by Minister for Foreign Affairs, Vivian Balakrishnan, that Singapore would … Continue Reading

ABC Compliance Survey 2021: five key areas to consider enhancements

Since the UK Bribery Act 2010 came into force in July 2011, standards and scope of anti-bribery and corruption (ABC) compliance programmes have evolved significantly in many jurisdictions. Norton Rose Fulbright recently carried out a global survey to assess how companies’ ABC compliance programmes compare against current global best practice expectations, as documented in guidance … Continue Reading

Withholding evidence on the ground of Common Law Public Interest Immunity in Singapore

Key takeaways The Singapore High Court recently confirmed in Mah Kiat Seng v Attorney-General [2021] SGHC 202 (Mah Kiat Seng) that the common law doctrine of public interest immunity remains part of Singapore law and was not superseded by the enactment of the Evidence Act (Cap. 97) (EA) in 1893. The Court also clarified how … Continue Reading

Financial Crime Outlook: 2021 and beyond

Senior management and boards are increasingly acknowledging the threat of financial crime as a critical risk to their business that must be addressed. This has been exacerbated in the last 12 months through the impact of the pandemic as well as rising domestic and international tensions. Norton Rose Fulbright’s financial crime compliance specialists, located in … Continue Reading

Singapore company discloses potential US sanctions violations

On 28 May 2020, Flex Ltd (“Flex”), a Singapore-based electronics manufacturer listed on the NASDAQ, disclosed in its 2020 US Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) filing that it had initiated a voluntary self-disclosure to the US Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) on 14 February 2019. The initial disclosure related to possible non-compliance with US … Continue Reading

Amendments to Malaysian anti-corruption law

Background Earlier this year, the Malaysian Parliament amended the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009 (MACC Act) to incorporate a new Section 17A on corporate liability for corruption. The new section not only establishes a new statutory corporate liability offence of corruption by a commercial organisation, but also deems any director, controller, officer, partner or manager … Continue Reading

Deferred Prosecution Agreements in Singapore – five things you should know

Earlier this year, the Singapore Parliament passed the Criminal Justice Reform Act 2018 (the Criminal Justice Act) introducing, among other things, a formal legislative framework for the Public Prosecutor to enter into deferred prosecution agreements (DPAs) with corporate offenders to resolve misconduct. This change represents a significant shift in Singapore’s approach towards corporate wrongdoing, and … Continue Reading

Singapore – Comprehensive Cyber Bill Published For Consultation

Overview: On 10 July 2017, the Singapore Government unveiled its draft Cybersecurity Bill (the Bill) and announced a public consultation to seek views and comments from the industry and members of public. The public consultation runs from 10 July to 3 August 2017. This Bill comes on the back of various moves by the Singapore … Continue Reading

FATF Mutual Evaluation Report for Singapore 2016

On 27 September 2016, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) issued its Mutual Evaluation Report (MER) of Singapore Anti-money laundering (AML) / Countering the financing of terrorism (CFT) measures, following a review which was conducted between 17 November 2015 and 3 December 2015. FATF’s last Mutual Evaluation for Singapore was conducted in 2008, with a … Continue Reading

The Monetary Authority of Singapore Establishes Dedicated Departments to Combat Money Laundering and Strengthen Enforcement

In the wake of the order to close BSI Bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced that it will, from 1 August 2016, establish dedicated departments to combat money laundering and strengthen enforcement respectively. MAS has indicated its resolve to ensure that Singapore retains its reputation as a clean and trusted financial centre, … Continue Reading

Monetary Authority of Singapore shuts down BSI Bank, imposes S$13.3 million fine

MAS Takes Action against BSI Bank in Singapore On 24 May 2016, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) gave BSI Bank Limited (BSI Bank) notice that the MAS will: withdraw BSI Bank’s status as a merchant bank for serious breaches of anti-money laundering requirements, poor management oversight and gross misconduct of bank staff. impose S$13.3 … Continue Reading

Proposed Amendments to the Securities & Futures (Reporting of Derivatives Contracts) Regulations

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has issued a Consultation Paper on proposed amendments to the regulations for the reporting of derivatives contracts (Regulations) on 18 January 2016, as part of the ongoing development of the regulatory regime governing OTC derivatives. MAS also released its proposed implementation schedule for new reporting phases in relation to … Continue Reading

Singapore: Renewed Focus on Trade Based Money Laundering

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) recently renewed its emphasis on money laundering risks in Trade Finance in its latest Guidance Paper on Anti-Money Laundering  and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Controls (AML/CFT) in Trade Finance and Correspondent Banking in October 2015. For the purposes of risk assessment relating to trade finance business, MAS emphasised … Continue Reading

Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) releases Consultation Paper on Proposed Regulations for Mandatory Clearing of Over-the-Counter (OTC) Derivative Contracts

MAS has issued a consultation paper on proposed regulations for mandatory clearing of OTC derivative contracts (Regulations) on 1 July 2015, as part of the ongoing development of the regulatory regime governing OTC derivatives. MAS proposes to issue the Regulations by the end of 2015, and has indicated that it will provide at least six … Continue Reading

New Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing provisions in the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) (Amendment) Act in force as of 26 June 2015

The MAS (Amendment) Act has come into force on 26 June 2015, implementing provisions discussed in our previous update. The key aspects of the new provisions are as follows: Anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) Requirements Requirements to conduct customer due diligence and maintain records on transactions and information have been expressly … Continue Reading

New provisions to be introduced under the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) Act to enhance the effectiveness of its fight against Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing

A Bill providing for amendments to the MAS Act recently underwent its first reading in Parliament and broadly covered the following purposes: Customer due diligence and record keeping requirements – the duties to perform customer due diligence measures for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) purposes and the obligation to keep records … Continue Reading

Monetary Authority of Singapore and Commercial Affairs Department to jointly investigate market misconduct offences

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) of the Singapore Police Force have announced that they will jointly investigate market misconduct offences such as insider trading and market manipulation, under Part XII of the Securities and Futures Act (SFA), going forward. This arrangement will enhance the enforcement process and improve … Continue Reading

Financial benchmark fixing

Regulators in key financial centres have investigated or taken action in relation to the attempted manipulation of various benchmarks. Regulators in the US and UK have recently levied US$3.4 billion dollars in fines against banks alleged to have manipulated the foreign exchange market. Swiss regulator FINMA has imposed restrictions when imposing penalties in connection with … Continue Reading