Annual Report 2001/2002

Calendar of Monetary and Financial Events

• The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announces proposed changes to banking regulations which will make it easier for banks to outsource some of their activities to third parties and help them focus on core competencies.

• The Singapore Exchange (SGX), in a joint venture with the American Stock Exchange, lists five Exchange Traded Funds.

• MAS hosts the 36th Southeast Asia Central Banks (SEACEN) Governors Conference and the 20th Meeting of the SEACEN Board of Governors. The International Monetary Conference is held back-to-back with the SEACEN Governors Conference.

• MAS issues new guidelines which allows hedge funds to be sold to the public, subject to a minimum initial subscription of $100,000 per investor.

• MAS signs Memorandum of Under-standing (MoU) with the Commission des valuers mobilières du Québec to facilitate the exchange of information and mutual assistance in relation to the regulation of securities markets.

• MAS signs MoU with the Financial Services Board of the Republic of South Africa on greater co-operation between the regulatory authorities of South Africa and Singapore in relation to the regulation of securities markets.

• SGX launches a five-year Singapore government bond futures contract.

• MAS unveils the second round of banking liberalisation, which will free up entry to the Singapore dollar wholesale market and intensify retail competition by giving foreign qualifying full banks more business opportunities.

• Insurance companies have to disclose, as recommended by the Committee on Efficient Distribution of Life Insurance, their expenses with immediate effect under the guidelines for benefit illustrations for all life insurance participating and investment-linked plans.

• MAS hosts a conference, “Central Banking in the New Economic and Financial Landscape” to mark its 30th Anniversary.

• MAS and the Bank for International Settlements Representative Office for Asia and the Pacific co-host the first joint meeting of EMEAP (Executives’ Meeting of East Asia and Pacific Central Banks) Forum and the Gold and Foreign Exchange Committee.

• MAS announces a new risk-based Liquidity Supervision Framework for banks in Singapore.

• The Association of Banks in Singapore (ABS) announces its online, image-based cheque clearing system, which will replace the traditional physical cheque flow process.

• The SGX and Tokyo Stock Exchange announce plans to form a strategic alliance aimed at broadening distribution and improving the liquidity of products traded on both markets.

• Parliament passes the Securities and Futures Bill and the Financial Advisers Bill.

• MAS and the Commercial Affairs Department, Singapore Police Force, jointly host the 4th Asia-Pacific Group on Money Laundering Typologies Workshop.

• MAS receives in-principle agreement from Continuous Linked Settlement (CLS) Bank to include Singapore dollar as a prospective CLS-eligible currency. The Development Bank of Singapore, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Ltd and United Overseas Bank Ltd become shareholders of the CLS Group.

• SGX launches single-stock futures contracts.

• SGX and Australian Stock Exchange launch their securities co-trading link in which 50 Singapore and 51 Australian stocks will be traded on the link.

• MAS signs an agreement with Japan’s Financial Services Agency to boost cooperation in supervising securities and derivatives markets.

• MAS issues new guidelines for the unit trust industry to protect investors against late redemption payment and stop them from bearing marketing and promotional costs.

• MAS raises the trigger point for a mandatory general offer in company takeovers to 30% from 25%.

• The United Overseas Bank Ltd merges with the Overseas Union Bank.

• SGX launches its securities lending programme.
• MAS launches Singapore Government Securities Electronic Applications for primary dealers to submit auction bids for Singapore Treasury Bills and Bonds online.

• The Insurance (Amendment) Act 2001 takes effect.
• Singapore’s three local banks announce the formation of Clearing and Payment Services (CAPS), a joint venture utility to facilitate banks’ participation in CLS to provide fast and safe settlement of foreign exchange trades.

• MAS announces that a consumer credit bureau will be set up in September by ABS.
• MAS announces that it will introduce several risk management guidelines that banks are expected to follow to prepare themselves for financial crises and shocks.

• MAS releases draft guidelines on mobile banking and payments to protect customers and their data.

• The Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Ltd merges with Keppel-Tat Lee Bank.

• MAS announces that local banks will have to rotate auditors every five years and that it is mandatory that audit committees of local banks be made up of non-executive directors and that a majority, including the chairman, be independent.

• MAS signs MoU with the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance of Hong Kong (OCI) under which MAS and OCI agree to provide mutual assistance and exchange information in relation to the regulation of the insurance industry in their respective jurisdictions.

• MAS announces moves to lift certain restrictions on the non-internationalisation of the Singapore dollar.

• MAS signs MoU with the People’s Bank of China to strengthen co-operation to promote the implementation of sound economic and prudential policies in the two countries, the effective supervision and development of the banking industry as well as staff training and development.

• The Public Accountants Board unveils proposed new rules governing auditor independence.

• MAS launches a dedicated website for Singapore Government Securities to provide comprehensive market information and data, to enhance market transparency and promote greater investor interest.

• MAS introduces more efficient risk-based capital framework for SGX members and modular licence fees for capital market intermediaries.
• SGX launches first local Exchange Traded Fund based on the Straits Times Index.

• The Government announces the 2002 Budget which includes tax con-cessions for the financial sector.

• SGX completes review of listing rules. New listing manual to take effect on 1 July 2002.

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