Advice to MTI on SBF’s Fair Tenancy Framework

In response to concerns raised by small businesses looking to rent premises for commercial, industrial, retail and food and beverage activities, the Singapore Business Federation (“SBF”) led the industry effort to develop a Fair Tenancy Framework (“FTF”). This framework aims to establish a set of clear leasing guidelines and negotiation principles to assist businesses. Specifically, the FTF seeks to help tenants and landlords understand the key terms and conditions of a lease agreement, the respective roles and responsibilities and the implications of prevalent industry lease clauses. It also serves as a checklist for negotiation between tenants and landlords. Ultimately, the FTF encourages both parties to conduct open, transparent and fair negotiations. 

MTI sought CCS’s comments on whether any recommendations within the FTF would raise competition concerns. CCS supported the promotion of clear contractual terms in tenancy agreements between the landlords and tenants and was of the view that the FTF does not raise competition concerns. At the same time, CCS recommended that SBF members should be allowed to independently decide if they want to follow the recommendations within the FTF. The FTF was launched by SBF in January 2015.