We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

Singapore, Republic of Korea Conclude Negotiations on Digital Economy Agreement

Singapore and the Republic of Korea (ROK) launched negotiations on a new Korea-Singapore Digital Partnership Agreement (KSDPA) last year. The agreement seeks to deepen bilateral cooperation in new emerging digital areas, such as in personal data protection and cross-border data flows, digital identities, fintech, as well as Artificial Intelligence (AI) governance frameworks. It also aims to support and foster greater collaboration between both countries’ SME communities in the digital economy.

Recently, Singapore and ROK have concluded negotiations on the Korea-Singapore Digital Partnership Agreement (KSDPA). The KSDPA will be Singapore’s fourth Digital Economy Agreement (DEA), and the first with an Asian country. The agreement will deepen bilateral cooperation in the digital economy between both countries, by establishing forward-looking digital trade rules and norms to promote interoperability between digital systems. This will enable more seamless cross-border data flows and build a trusted and secure digital environment for our businesses and consumers.

I welcome the conclusion of the KoreaSingapore Digital Partnership Agreement. It will strengthen the digital connectivity between Singapore and the Republic of Korea, and add to our already robust economic ties. By aligning standards, enabling trusted data flows and allowing cross border digital transactions to take place more seamlessly, the KSDPA will open up opportunities for our businesses and people in the rapidly growing digital economy.

– Dr Tan See Leng, Second Minister for Trade and Industry

The KSDPA will prohibit data localisation except for specific purposes such as regulatory access. This allows businesses to transfer data securely as part of their daily business operations and allows businesses to choose where they may wish to store and process their data, according to their business needs. It will also deepen bilateral cooperation in new emerging areas like Personal Information Protection, E-payments, and Source Code protection.

ROK and Singapore will also identify cross-border opportunities to facilitate Artificial Intelligence innovation and collaborations. The DEA will complement Singapore’s efforts to develop multilateral rules to create an enabling environment for e-commerce as co-convenor of the World Trade Organisation Joint Statement Initiative on E-commerce.

Singapore and ROK enjoy strong economic ties. Singapore was ROK’s 8th largest trade partner in 2020, with bilateral trade reaching S$44.6 billion. As of end-2019, Singapore was ROK’s 9th largest investor in Asia, with about S$8.37 billion worth of investments recorded in ROK. ROK was Singapore’s 6th largest source of investments in Asia, with a cumulative direct investment of S$23.7 billion.

The KSDPA is part of a series of DEAs that Singapore has embarked upon. These agreements are an inter-agency effort led by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Communications and Information, and the Infocomm Media Development Authority, to advance collaboration in the digital economy and enhance digital connectivity.

As reported by OpenGov Asia, Singapore and the United Kingdom (UK) have also substantially concluded negotiations on the UK-Singapore Digital Economy Agreement (UKSDEA). The trade deal – Singapore’s third DEA – is intended to boost digital trade and data flows, such as the promotion of interoperable e-payment systems and the prohibition of local data storage requirements. It will also encourage digital economy participation, through channels such as online consumer protection rules, and e-commerce platform access for small businesses.

Under the UKSDEA, Singapore and the UK are also pursuing cooperative projects that provide a dynamic framework for bilateral cooperation on forward-looking and emerging issues. Singapore and the UK enjoy strong economic ties, with the UK being Singapore’s largest services trading partner in Europe. In 2019, bilateral services trade exceeded S$22 billion, of which around 70% could have been digitally delivered. The UK is also Singapore’s second-largest European investor and European investment destination, with over S$100 billion worth of UK investment stock in Singapore, and close to S$60 billion worth of Singapore investment stock in the UK.

Send this to a friend