Sunday, August 06, 2006

Singapore crackdowns on foreign publications

The Singapore government says that it is a privilege, and not a right, for foreign newspapers to circulate in Singapore. So it decides to force foreign publications in Singapore to have a legal representative here and pay a deposit of S$200,000. This act has been condemmed by Reporters Without Borders. From Reporters Without Borders:
“The authorities are looking for effective ways, including fear of prosecution and heavy fines, to intimidate these publications into censoring themselves,” the worldwide press freedom organisation said. “This is the latest threat against the foreign media, which are the only means of reporting independently on political and economic events in the country since the local press is controlled by the government.”

The information, communications and arts ministry gave the monthly Far Eastern Economic Review until 11 September to comply with section 23 of the Newspapers and Printing Presses Act. The magazine has been registered as a foreign publication since it criticised the government’s domestic policy in 1987 but had an exemption from some legal requirements which has now been cancelled. It must have a legal representative in the country by the ministry’s deadline and pay a deposit of 200,000 Singapore dollars (100,000 euros). For other foreign publications, the International Herald Tribune, Time magazine, the Financial Times and Newsweek, have been ordered to do the same when their licences come up for renewal.
(Thanks Sir Thomas)


Lord Kimbo said...

Why must they pay a deposit?

pkchong said...

i will not be surprise if foreign publications shun away from singapore.

Bengster said...

Wahlao $200000 deposit! So much??

wiqai said...

i think the govt do this to prevent the foreign publications from saying bad things about the govt.

its like u say something bad about us, say goodbye to your S$200k!

Shy said...

wiqai: not to mention the expensive law suits.