6. What are the effects of the amendments to the Singapore Companies (Amendment) Act 2017?
The Singapore Companies (Amendment) Act 2017, which came into force on 23 May 2017, has made significant changes to Singapore’s law relating to schemes of arrangement, judicial management and cross-border insolvency. The changes is to transform Singapore into a debt restructuring hub to act as an international centre for debt restructuring. The Companies Act (Amendment) Act 2017 (Cap 50) consist of:
a. Jurisdictional requirements that increased access by foreign companies to the debt restructuring regime in Singapore;
b. Enhanced moratorium for both scheme of arrangement and judicial management which broaden the scope of protection afforded to a distressed company;
c. New features to schemes of arrangement regime like more extensive cram-down provisions, moratorium to extend to related companies and enhanced creditor protection;
d. Introduction of “super-priority” status granted by court over secured and unsecured debts, provided that such pre-existing interest are adequately protected; and
e. Adoption of UNCITRAL Model Law to provide a framework of recognition to facilitate cross-border insolvencies and to accords foreign main proceedings greater deference and great immediate automatic relief than foreign non-main proceedings.