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Singapore enhances payments infrastructure

Excerpt of speech by Minister Lim Hng Kiang at Swift International Banking Operations Seminar (SIBOS) on 20 Oct 2003


".....In the third quarter, the Singapore economy rebounded a robust 15%, quarter-on-quarter, after a sharp decline of 11% in the second quarter. This momentum is expected to continue into the final quarter leading to an expected 0-1% growth in GDP for the full year. Barring unexpected adverse developments, Singapore's economy is forecasted to grow between 3% and 5% in 2004.

"Manufacturing will continue to ascend the value chain, supported by strong research and development capabilities. More emphasis will be placed on our growing services sector, especially on exportable services, to capture the increasing demand in the region. Areas like transport and logistics, infocomms technology and financial services will be strengthened to build Singapore into a global services hub.....

"In the area of financial services, which contributes about 12% to Singapore's GDP, the winds of change have been blowing strongly for the past six years.
"Singapore has liberalised its financial services sector substantially, in particular, in retail banking, insurance and stock-broking activities. We are broadening and deepening the debt market and promoting asset management activities. In the area of regulation and supervision, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has shifted its approach to risk-focused supervision within a disclosure-based framework.....

"We have managed to attract a number of global financial institutions, such as Citibank, The Bank of New York and Barclays Capital, to hub their universal processing centres for securities and treasury products in Singapore. These centres serve Asia, and in certain functions, beyond Asia.

"In addition to our economic and political stability and well-developed infrastructure, Singapore's strategic geographic location is ideal for housing Disaster Recovery Centres. Singapore is neither subject to extreme weather conditions nor susceptible to other natural hazards.

"To encourage more companies to locate Disaster Recovery Centres in Singapore, the government has implemented an employment pass scheme to allow foreign professionals of companies in Singapore immediate entry into the country and commencement of work in the event that disaster recovery plans are activated.....

"Last month, the Singapore Dollar became one of the 11 eligible Continuous Linked Settlement (CLS) currencies. Today, CLS settles an average of 80,000 instructions daily, with a total gross value of about US$1trillion.

"The introduction of CLS and the inclusion of the Singapore Dollar in CLS reduce the risk in settlement of FX trades and increase the range of options available for currency trading and settlement. This is a significant milestone in the development of Singapore as a global financial and FX trading hub, and underscores Singapore's readiness to invest in new technology and infrastructure.

"CLS has been operating for just over a year and it is timely to take stock and assess the direction going forward. An area that warrants some attention is the settlement risk that remains with FX trades that do not settle in CLS. In this regard, CLS is bringing more settlement currencies into the system and also actively working with its members to offer third party services to financial institutions that are non-CLS settlement members.

"In particular, through innovative products, some settlement members are offering banks, including central banks, the ability to leverage on the CLS infrastructure while addressing their specific needs and concerns such as straight-through- processing capabilities and confidentiality of transactions.

Source: Singapore Government Press Release 20 Oct 2003



New Works on Paper 2003 - exhibition by Yeo Shih Yun  26 Sep - 12 Nov 2003

ExxonMobil Campus Concerts  Oct 2003

Beyond Therapy 15-24 Oct 2003

The Vagina Monologues 28 Oct - 2 Nov 2003

HOME at Sculpture Square  30 Oct - 21 Dec 2003

Land Of Joy  6 - 30 Nov 2003

Clay Sculptures by Jacqueline Ng  7 - 10 Nov 2003

PPAS organises 2 holiday camps for kids! 24-26, 26-28 Nov 2003

Ling Chung The Dragon - by Tam Tam Theatre (London)  4-14 Dec 2003

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23 October 2003

Singapore Time