Private Takings of Land for Urban Redevelopment: A Tale of Two Cities
(2021) 69(2) American Journal of Comparative Law 295-334
38 Pages Posted: 10 Jan 2020 Last revised: 1 Mar 2022
Date Written: May 30, 2019
In 1999, both Hong Kong and Singapore brought into force legislation that permitted a supermajority of apartment owners within a building development that met certain statutory criterion to force a minority of dissents to sell the development as a whole. Both territories did so because, as land scarce cities, it was considered that the redevelopment of aging buildings was an urgent imperative. In so doing, although they claimed to be following other jurisdictions, both Hong Kong and Singapore broke new ground in pioneering the private takings of land among common law jurisdictions. These developments have proven controversial in both territories although the controversies have differed because of differences in implementation and historical background in both cities, despite their sharing a past as British colonies in Asia. This paper compares the two regimes against each other as well as against the more mature regime permitting private takings of shares in mergers and acquisitions law to highlight the lessons to be learnt in order to prevent abuse.
Keywords: private takings, en-bloc sales, collective sales, mergers & acquisitions, urban redevelopment, minority protection, Singapore, Hong Kong
JEL Classification: K
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation