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Electronic Filing System

The Singapore judiciary implemented phase 1 of the Electronic Filing System (EFS) on March 8 1997. Specified documents may now be filed in an electronic form. When all phases of the EFS, at an estimated cost of S$80 million, are fully implemented, all documents for civil matters may be filed 24 hours a day, seven days a week from anywhere in Singapore. Lawyers and litigants will also be able to inspect and copy court documents, serve documents and obtain information on certain types of court proceedings electronically.

Liberalization of telecoms

Singapore Telecom has lost its monopoly of the paging and hand phone telecommunications industry in Singapore. On April 1 1997, three new paging operators and one new cellular phone operator entered the market. This heralded the start of a more liberal telecommunications industry in Singapore.

A month earlier, the Telecommunication Authority of Singapore launched a tender exercise for two full telecommunications service licences. These licences will commence in April 2000, ending Singapore Telecom's monopoly of basic telecommunications services seven years ahead of the original deadline. The new telecommunications operators will pay a fixed licence fee of S$10 million (US$6.9 million). All groups filing tenders have to be at least 51% Singapore-owned.

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