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Public Consultation on Legislation to mandate compliance with the Code of Conduct for Leasing of Retail Premises in Singapore

Public Consultation on Legislation to mandate compliance with the Code of Conduct for Leasing of Retail Premises in Singapore

The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) invites members of the public to give feedback on the proposed legislation to mandate compliance with the Code of Conduct for Leasing of Retail Premises in Singapore. The consultation period will be from 18 July to 5 August 2022.

Background

2. On 26 March 2021, the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) announced the completion of the Code of Conduct for Leasing of Retail Premises in Singapore (“Code”) by the Fair Tenancy Pro Tem Committee. The Code sets out guidelines and principles for landlords and tenants of qualifying retail premises to enable fair and balanced lease negotiations. Since 1 June 2021, the Code has been voluntarily adopted by major private sector landlords and all Government landlords. The Code is available at https://www.ftic.org.sg.

3. The Fair Tenancy Industry Committee (“FTIC”), which comprises landlord and tenant representatives, as well as industry experts, held a press conference today. The FTIC provided an update on its work, including revisions that were made to the Code through consultation with key stakeholders to minimise ambiguity of the clauses and better cater to the needs of industry.

Proposed Legislation and Feedback Submission

4. MTI had earlier announced the Government’s support for the Pro Tem Committee’s recommendation to make compliance with the Code mandatory for the leasing of retail premises in Singapore. MTI will introduce legislation to mandate compliance with the Code and establish a facilitated dispute resolution process. We invite members of the public to provide feedback on the key provisions of the legislation.

5. Minister of State for Trade and Industry, Ms Low Yen Ling, said, “MTI welcomes the update and progress charted by the FTIC and we firmly support the industry’s pledge to uphold the Code of Conduct. The establishment of the Code has been a significant step forward for the retail sector. Landlords and tenants who had adopted the Code have found it very helpful for their lease negotiations. I also commend the FTIC on its earnest efforts to make it easier for landlords and tenants to observe and comply with the Code. It has provided tools like a step-by-step guide to filing deviations and a template for Code-compliant lease agreements. MTI has been consulting widely with key stakeholders. We are now ready to move forward on the public consultation exercise and to make compliance with the Code mandatory. We invite the public to submit their views and comments on the key provisions of legislation. MTI will study the feedback received carefully. We hope this industry-developed Code will continue to strengthen the partnership between landlords and tenants and benefit Singapore’s retail businesses as well as consumers in the long run.”

6. Members of the public can participate in this public consultation exercise by viewing the consultation document on the MTI website and submitting their views and comments, using the prescribed template, via email to MTI_email@mti.gov.sg by 5 August 2022.

 

MINISTRY OF TRADE AND INDUSTRY
18 JULY 2022

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