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Singapore: the opportunities & challenges facing an emerging sports law jurisdiction

Signapore Marinabay
Thursday, 28 May 2020 By Chui Ling Goh (Ling)

In the world of sports law, Singapore may (unfortunately) be best known for being the home of ‘the world’s most notorious match-fixing syndicate’,[1] led by Dan Tan, Wilson Raj Perumal, and other associates, who were finally arrested in 2014 just before the start of the World Cup. Thankfully, however, there is far more to Singapore’s emerging sports industry than that.  After winning its first gold medal at the 2016 Olympic Games in swimming (with Joseph Schooling pipping Michael Phelps[2]) Singapore sought to establish itself as a sporting nation to try to rival its own achievements as “the world’s most competitive economy” and one of the world’s safest cities.[3]

This article provides an introduction to Singapore’s sport industry, with a particular focus on the governance and legal challenges that it faces.  Specifically, it looks at:

  • The administrative structure
  • Sports budgets
  • Sports initiatives and Vision 2030
  • Personal and socio-economic obstacles to participation
  • The need for better governance
  • The need for improved sports tribunals

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Chui Ling Goh (Ling)

Chui Ling Goh (Ling)

Chui Ling Goh (Ling) is doctoral researcher with Melbourne Law School, specialising in sports law and governance. Ling is a published author in journals such as International Sports Law Journal, and International Sports Law Review. She also co-authored sports policy work with Professional Football Association and Singapore Athletic Association. Ling has professionally advised national sporting organisations and companies on their legal and policy issues, such as governance and employment. She presently sits on the board of Singapore’s only sports charity, Chiam See Tong Sports Fund, and Singapore Cycling Federation’s Athlete Appeals Committee.

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