Mr Leon Perera: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry (a) whether government economic agencies seek to educate Singapore-based businesses on sanction requirements when doing business abroad especially in high-risk countries; and (b) what actions government economic agencies will take to encourage local companies to avoid violation of sanctions including secondary sanctions.
Written Answer by Minister for Trade & Industry Mr Chan Chun Sing
1. All businesses should be responsible for ensuring that they comply with relevant laws and regulations which they are subject to, wherever they conduct their business activities. This includes United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions.
2. Although businesses are primarily responsible for compliance, the Singapore Government helps to raise awareness in the business community through advisories and outreach events. Firstly, whenever sanctions are imposed by the UNSC, MTI, Singapore Customs and Enterprise Singapore will issue formal advisories on the scope of the sanctions and the penalties for non-compliance. Businesses are encouraged to refer to these advisories and seek legal advice to ensure that their activities do not expose their company and employees to sanctions. Secondly, Government economic agencies organise outreach events such as industry seminars for businesses to learn about best practices for due-diligence and Know-Your-Customer processes. This helps to equip businesses with the knowledge on how to spot red flags during the course of their commercial activities, so that they may be able to comply with prevailing laws and sanctions.