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4 August 2009

Singapore shipyard sues SocGen

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Singapore’s Jurong Shipyard on Monday started legal action against Societe Generale to recover $198.9million which relates to unauthorised foreign exchange transactions, reported the Straits Times.

Its Singapore High Court action is for $83.5million paid to the French bank before unauthorised foreign exchange transactions were uncovered in October 2007, the daily said. Added to this is $115.4 million paid to Societe Generale as part of preconditions for closing the unauthorised transactions in November 2007.

This second payment was made on the premise that it would be refunded should the dispute over the unauthorised forex trades be resolved in Jurong Shipyard's favour, said Sembcorp Marine.

The issue dates back to October 2007, when Sembcorp Marine revealed that Jurong Shipyard had suffered massive forex losses of $303 million.

The losses were blamed on former finance chief Wee Sing Guan, who was sacked by Jurong Shipyard which also filed a complaint against him with Singapore's Commercial Affairs Department.

“Jurong Shipyard remains of the view that the unauthorised transactions were not valid and binding on Jurong Shipyard, and is pursuing its right to claim for a refund of the monies from Societe Generale,” Sembcorp Marine said.

The red ink was reduced to $258.7million last year, after Jurong Shipyard reached agreement with nine of the 11 banks involved to close out the transactions.


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