Real-time electronic voting will be an option for some meetings: MinLaw

SINGAPORE – Real-time electronic voting will be an option for some meetings such as general meetings of companies, charities and registered societies amid the Covid-19 pandemic, said the Ministry of Law (MinLaw) on Tuesday (Sept 29).

This option kicks in from Oct 1 and will also apply for insolvency- and bankruptcy-related meetings.

While voting electronically is already prescribed for governing board meetings for some organisations, the ministry said that doing so real-time is not yet provided for as an alternative arrangement for most meetings.

MinLaw said this option can be exercised as long as certain prescribed safeguards are adopted and the entity still allows attendees to vote by appointing the Chairman or convenor as their proxy to vote.

Amendments to the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) (Alternative Arrangements for Meetings) Orders have come into force on Tuesday.

They allow alternative arrangements for virtual meetings such as annual general meetings (AGMs) to continue until June 30 next year.

Certain entities such as charities, management corporations and registered societies can also delay their annual general meetings until Dec 31.

This would give them a grace period to overcome practical difficulties in organising meetings, physical or virtual, the ministry added on Tuesday.

With regard to matters that attendees may wish to raise at meetings, MinLaw said the amendments have made it clearer that organisations can allow this to be done at real-time question-and-answer sessions via electronic means.

Organisations must continue to accept such submissions made via post or e-mail prior to the meeting.

The ministry also clarified that organisations are already allowed to use virtual AGM platforms or other electronic means to accept submissions in advance of the meeting.

It reiterated that organisations can rely on meeting arrangements permitted by their governing instruments, such as physical meetings, as long as they comply with the prevailing safe distancing regulations.

More information on how to conduct alternative arrangements for meetings as well as the authorities to contact for enquiries can be found at https://go.gov.sg/alternativemeetings

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