Important Business Laws of Singapore
The business laws of Singapore are of utmost importance for all who plan to start a business in the country. One of the most important business laws which exists in Singapore is the Competition Law which bans businesses from participating in activities deemed to be anti-competitive through information specified in Sections 34, 47, and 54. This law has been in place since 2007. It is enforced and administered by the Competition Commission of Singapore (CCS). CCS also has the right to assess instances in which the Competition Law may have been violated as well as punish any business or business owner proven to be in violation of this law.
Another important law to be followed by all businesses based in Singapore is the Employment Act of 1968. This law is the primary piece of labor legislation existing in Singapore today. It was created in order to raise the standards of employment practices in Singapore as well as to improve the working conditions experienced by employees in the country. Most, but not all, workers who are based in Singapore are protected by the Employment Act. Those to whom the Employment Act does not apply must determine the rights to which they are entitled by engaging in a discussion with their respective employers.
All electronic transactions performed by businesses based in Singapore are governed by the Electronic Transactions Act. The Electronic Transactions Act came into force in 1998 and was amended in 2010. Apart from electronic transactions, it also governs various other digital services in Singapore. Such digital services include electronic contracts, electronic signatures, e-commerce, and maintenance of electronic records. The Electronic Transactions Act ensures that when a business is involved with any of the preceding activities, those activities are conducted in a way which is proper and legal.
Adherence to Singapore Business Laws After Expansion Abroad
As has been mentioned, the business laws of Singapore are to be applied to their fullest extent upon companies which have been incorporated in Singapore. However, the foreign branches of companies which have expanded abroad do not have to abide by the business laws of Singapore. This is because such foreign branches are to abide by the business laws of the country in which they conduct business operations because the business laws of that country govern the foreign branch. Just as Singapore imposes its business laws on businesses which have been established there, so other countries also impose their own business laws on businesses in those countries. This includes Singaporean-owned business which have expanded abroad and conduct business operations there. Therefore, the Singapore office and branches of a Singapore-based company which has expanded abroad are to abide by the business laws of Singapore, while the company’s foreign branches must be compliant with the business laws of the country in which business operations are being conducted.