Donald S Bernstein
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
This is the fifth edition of The Insolvency Review. Once again this volume offers an in depth review of market conditions and insolvency case developments in key countries around the world. A debt of gratitude is owed to the outstanding professionals in geographically diverse locales who have contributed to this book, many of whom participated with their colleagues in this year’s meetings of Insol International (in Sydney) and the International Insolvency Institute (in London). Their contributions reflect diverse viewpoints and approaches, which in turn reflect the diversity of their respective national commercial cultures and laws. Importantly, their views also reflect the slow but steady convergence of those cultures and laws over the last 30 years that promises to continue well into the future.
The preface to this fifth edition affords the opportunity to highlight recent positive developments in cross-border insolvency, many of which highlight this convergence. For example, in March of this year, the parliament of Singapore enacted sweeping reforms to the country’s corporate insolvency laws that are intended to transform Singapore into a regional insolvency hub for cross-border reorganisations. The drafters of the new regime incorporated a number of core features similar to those of US chapter 11, including a worldwide automatic stay, super-priority rescue financing, ‘cram-down’ provisions that allow schemes of arrangement to be approved notwithstanding that a class of creditors has not approved the scheme, and provisions for pre-packaged restructurings. In addition, Singapore became the most recent nation to enact legislation based on the UNCITRAL Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvency (the Model Law). Singapore’s statutory framework and substantive law is the subject of Chapter 21 of this volume.