Letters to Editor
Published Date: 07 August 2015

Response to "Singapore a strange choice for a speech on corruption" - Financial Times, 4 August 2015

6 August 2015

The Editor
Financial Times

Dear Editor,

Contrary to the allegation by Mr James B Rugemalira in “Singapore a strange choice for a speech on corruption" (FT, 4 Aug), Singapore has no tolerance for illicit financial flows and we are not a tax haven.

2   Singapore has a rigorous regime to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism and to detect and deter the flow of illicit funds. The robustness of our regime has been affirmed by the Financial Action Task Force, with Singapore assessed to be comparable with top-tier countries such as the UK and US.

3   Singapore’s economic model and fiscal policy are fundamentally different from tax havens that facilitate letter-box companies and do not levy corporate taxes. We have a broad-based tax system that levies taxes on companies and individuals. The economy is characterised by substantial activities across diverse sectors.

4   Singapore has always taken decisive action on any substantiated case of criminal activity and we have controls to ensure that exporters and importers submit accurate information to our customs authorities. We stand ready to render assistance to our international counterparts through established cooperation channels to combat transnational crime, including tax evasion and money laundering.

Ong Chong Tee
Deputy Managing Director (Financial Supervision)
Monetary Authority of Singapore