A forum letter writer has warned Hyflux against signing a binding deal with a foreign entity, asserting that the water plant must remain a Singapore asset.
In a forum letter published by the national broadsheet yesterday (19 June), Mark Junyong Ong urged the Government to “assess the offers made by potential investors and offer a fair sum to Hyflux to take over its assets.”
The beleaguered water-treatment firm has received four non-binding letters of intent from potential investors and is in talks with seven potential investors, in recent weeks. It is expected to announce a decision soon.
So far, it has been revealed that a China state-owned power service provider and a utility firm based in the United Arab Emirates are among the entities contending to enter into a deal with Hyflux.
Asserting that it is “alarming” for another nation’s state owned firm to own a water plant in Singapore, Mr Ong cautioned: “The demand for water in Singapore is ever-growing. For the average consumer, they could see a hike in water prices as the private entity seeks to maximise profit on their investment.
“It would be very dangerous if a foreign state-owned enterprise had control over the production and supply of this precious resource. It is not only a threat to national security, but Singapore would also be obligated to the foreign state. What would the implications be if relationships between the two nations sour?”
Calling on the Government to step in to “secure political and social objectives,” Mr Ong said that Singapore must “consider both the explicit and implicit costs of allowing a local water-treatment firm to fall into the hands of a foreign state-owned enterprise.”
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