UK-Singapore digital trade deal comes into force

A digital trade deal that establishes rules and standards for cross-border data flows and data protection between Singapore and the UK has officially come into force.

According to The Straits Times, the UK-Singapore Digital Economy Agreement (UKSDEA) was signed and finalised earlier this year with both parties completing the legal requirements and procedures since.

A joint statement by three Singaporean government departments said, “The UKSDEA’s entry into force reflects the UK and Singapore’s strong commitment towards enabling new growth opportunities for Singapore businesses in the digital economy.

“With the UKSDEA, benefits to businesses include end-to-end digital trade such as safe and secure e-payments and paperless trading, as well as seamless and trusted data flows, which encourage participation in the digital economy. Consumers will enjoy greater online consumer protection, as well as safe and secure cross-border payments.”

Key highlights of the deal including the setting out of transparent rules for secure cross-border electronic payments and accepting electronic versions of trade documents, so that cargo can be cleared more efficiently and transactions made faster and cheaper.

In addition, both countries will help smaller firms with jobs, connections with international partners and efforts to innovate. For consumers, laws and regulations will be established to protect them against fraudulent, misleading or deceptive conduct online.

The UKSDEA has also led to a memoranda of understanding and letters being signed and exchanged on the side to establish collaborations in areas of cyber and FinTech.

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