SINGAPORE LEGISLATION

Citation(1998) 10 SAcLJ 464
Published date01 December 1998
Date01 December 1998

DIGEST OF ACTS PASSED BETWEEN FEBRUARY 1998 AND SEPTEMBER 1998 IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER

(correct as at 30th September 1998)

Banking (Amendment) Act 1998

Act No. 27 of 1998

Long Title: An Act to amend the Banking Act (Chapter 19 of the 1994 Revised Edition).

Passed by Parliament on: 29th June 1998.

Assented to by President on: 3rd July 1998.

Publication date: 10th July 1998.

Commencement date: 10th July 1998 vide S 367/98.

Summary: This Act amends the Banking Act (Cap. 19) to —

  1. (a) enable the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to establish a real-time gross settlement system (RTGS) for the transfer of funds, settlement of payment obligations and the transfer and settlement of book-entry securities and instruments on a continuous basis;

  2. (b) allow a foreign supervisory authority —

    1. (i) to inspect the Singapore branches of banks under its supervision; or

    2. (ii) to obtain information for the purpose of supervision of such banks,

    where it has given such written undertaking, as to the confidentiality of the information, as MAS may determine;

  3. (c) allow a foreign supervisory authority, with the prior approval of MAS, to appoint another body to inspect the Singapore branches of banks under its supervision; and

  4. (d) extend the provisions of section 62(1)(a) on priority of deposit liabilities upon the winding up of a bank to proceeds arising from the issue of stored value cards under section 77A, the proceeds of which attract the minimum reserve and liquidity requirements.

Comments: The RTGS system (strongly encouraged by the Bank for International Settlements BIS) reduces chances of settlement failure in one bank affecting other banks. It replaces the existing interbank payment (SHIFT) which settles interbank payments on a net basis at the end of the day.

Boundaries and Survey Maps Act 1998

Act No. 35 of 1998

Long Title: An Act to provide for the demarcation of land, the establishment and maintenance of boundary marks and the publication of certain survey maps, and to repeal the Boundaries and Survey Maps Act (Chapter 25 of the 1985 Revised Edition) and the Landmarks Acl (Chapter 159 of the 1985 Revised Edition) and to make consequential amendments to the Land Surveyors Act (Chapter 156 of the 1992 Revised Edition).

Passed by Parliament on: 4th September 1998.

Assented to by President on: 23rd September 1998.

Publication date: Not yet published

Commencement date: Not yet in force

Summary: This Act reforms the Boundaries and Survey Maps Act (Cap. 25) and repeals the Landmarks Act (Cap. 159) which is obsolete.

Sections 3 to 9 relate to the appointment of the Chief Surveyor and the functions, duties and powers of the Chief Surveyor and survey officers under the Act.

Sections 10 and 11 relate to the preservation of boundary marks.

Sections 12 and 13 relate to the use and alteration of maps under the repealed Boundaries and Survey Maps Act (Cap. 25).

Sections 14 to 17 relate to various enforcement powers under the Act.

Section 19 makes consequential amendments to the Land Surveyors Act (Cap. 156) arising from the substitution of the definition of “title survey” with “cadastral survey”.

Related Legislation: Land Surveyors Act (Cap. 156)

Central Provident Fund (Amendment) Act 1998

Act No. 11 of 1997

Long Title: An Act to amend the Central Provident Fund Act (Chapter 36 of the 1997 Revised Edition).

Passed by Parliament on: 29th June 1998.

Assented to by President on: 3rd July 1998.

Publication date: 17th July 1998.

Commencement date: 1st August 1998 vide S 411/98.

Summary: This Act amends the Central Provident Fund Act (Cap. 36) to —

  1. (a) allow voluntary contributions to the Central Provident Fund (CPF) by persons in respect of whom contributions are not required under the Act or the regulations to be paid (section 13B);

  1. (b) permit CPF members to apply to transfer part of the amount standing to the credit in their ordinary accounts to their special accounts. The transfer is only permitted if the amount standing to the credit in the member’s special account is below a prescribed amount, currently set at $40,000 in line with the CPF Maximum Sum Scheme in the year 2003 (section 18B);

  2. (c) provide that insurance cover under the Home Protection Insurance Scheme will extend to only one immovable property at the same time (section 30A). The provision provides for the termination of cover in respect of the earlier of 2 immovable properties purchased upon the commencement of cover for the later immovable property purchased. Persons who on the date of coming into operation of this provision are covered under the Scheme for more than one immovable property will have their cover under the Scheme terminated in respect of the earlier property purchased. Provision is made for refund of an amount representing the surrender value of the terminated cover (section 30A);

  3. (d) empower CPF Board officer to issue notices to compel the attendance of accused persons at court without the need to obtain a summons of court (section 62);

  4. (e) provide simpler means of service of notices to attend court issued by the CPF Board and summons of court e.g. by registered post (section 62A);

  5. (f) remove the requirement of obtaining the Public Prosecutor’s sanction for prosecution under the Act (section 62 repealed);

  6. (g) increase the amount that the CPF Board may require to compound an offence (section 63);

  7. (h) provide for certificates issued by the CPF Board as to amount of contributions and interest due from employers and other persons to be prima facie evidence (section 66A); and

  8. (i) provide for priority to be given to the employee’s contributions and interest where employers’ property is sought to be attached by creditors of the employer (section 68).

Computer Misuse (Amendment) Act 1998

Act No. 21 of 1998

Long Title: An Act to amend the Computer Misuse Act (Chapter 50A of the 1994 Revised Edition).

Passed by Parliament on: 30th June 1998.

Assented to by President on: 3rd July 1998.

Publication date: 24th July 1998.

Commencement date: 1st August 1998 vide S 392/98.

Summary: This Act amends the Computer Misuse Act (Cap. 50A) to —

  1. (a) enhance computer security by giving greater protection to “protected computers” (section 6C);

  2. (b) enhance the penalties to make them proportionate to the damage caused by the offence and to provide enhanced penalties for second offenders;

  3. (c) create new offences of securing access with intent to commit or facilitate commission of an offence (section 4), unauthorised obstruction of use of computer (section 6A) and unauthorised disclosure of access code (section 6B);

  4. (d) make it clear that the Act does not prohibit a police officer or other duly authorised law enforcement officer from lawfully conducting investigations (section 11); and

  5. (e) widen the powers of police officers and persons authorised by the Commissioner of Police to gain access to computer systems and data. The Public Prosecutor’s consent is required before certain powers of investigation may be exercised (section 14).

The definition of “computer” is amended to allow the Minister to exclude prescribed devices from the definition. The word “damage” is defined to mean any impairment to a computer or the integrity or availability of data, a program or system, or information, that —

  1. (a) causes loss aggregating at least $10,000 in value, or such other amount as the Minister may, by notification in the Gazette, prescribe except that any loss incurred or accrued more than one year after the date of the offence in question will be disregarded;

  2. (b) modifies or impairs, or potentially modifies or impairs, the medical examination, diagnosis, treatment or care of one or more persons;

  3. (c) causes or threatens physical injury or death to any person; or

  4. (d) threatens public health or public safety.

A computer is treated as a “protected computer” if the person committing the offence knew, or ought reasonably to have known, that the computer or program or data is used directly in connection with or necessary for

  1. (a) the security, defence or international relations of Singapore;

  2. (b) the existence or identity of a confidential source of information relating to the enforcement of a criminal law;

  3. (c) the provision of services directly related to communications infrastructure, banking and financial services, public utilities, public transportation or public key infrastructure; or

  4. (d) the protection of public safety including systems related to essential emergency services like police, civil defence and medical services.

Control of Plants (Amendment) Act 1998

Act No. 32 of 1998

Long Title: An Act to amend the Control of Plants Act (Chapter 57A of the 1994 Revised Edition).

Passed by Parliament on: 31st July 1998

Assented to by President on: 18th August 1998.

Publication date: Not yet published

Commencement date: Not yet in force

Summary: This Act amends the Control of Plants Act (Cap. 57A).

Part II is repealed and re-enacted. Section 6 prohibits the import for sale, supply or distribution or the transhipment of any fresh fruit or vegetable except under and in accordance with a licence issued by the Director of Primary Production. Section 7 prohibits such import for sale, supply or distribution by the holder of a licence under section 6 unless he has fulfilled several conditions including the obtaining of a permit from the Director in respect of the consignment of fruits or vegetables to be imported by him. The section also prohibits the transhipment of any fresh fruit or vegetable except under and in accordance with a permit issued by the Director.

New sections 15A and 15B enable Singapore to comply with its obligations in regard to paragraph 3 of Article 39 of the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). These new sections provide for...

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