Trade for prosperity

The UK-Singapore Digital Economy Agreement (DEA) builds on the comprehensive bilateral UK-Singapore FTA which entered into force on 11 February 2021. The DEA is one of the world’s most innovative trade agreements, covering the digitised trade in services and goods across the whole economy. It is a ground-breaking deal that is deeper and wider than previous trade agreements covering the modern digital economy.

The DEA will take our trading relationship with Singapore – worth £16 billion in 2020 – to the next level by overhauling outdated trade rules that affect both goods and services exporters, making it easier for UK businesses to target new opportunities in Singapore and other lucrative Asian markets.

Wide-ranging benefits for businesses include: 

  • Services exporters will greatly benefit from this agreement’s provisions but goods exporters will also benefit, especially with the replacement of time-consuming and costly paperwork with e-signatures, e-contracts and electronic invoicing with greater confidence. 
  • Future growth sectors like fintech and lawtech can benefit from deep cooperation with another advanced economy – helping cement the UK’s position as a world leader in tech and a global services, digital and data hub.  
  • This agreement will also prevent unjustified data localisation requirements which can add significant costs to UK businesses, effectively shutting smaller traders out of new markets. 
  • The deal will ensure stronger cyber security and closer links between the two high-tech and services hubs.

Consumer benefits 

The DEA will promote personal data protection and require both countries to have data-protection frameworks in place.

It will promote the flow of data across borders while maintaining our world-leading standards for personal data protection enshrined within the Data Protection Act 2018.

The UK and Singapore will commit to protecting the rights of consumers online. This includes through laws and regulations to ban misleading, deceptive, fraudulent and unfair commercial practices that may harm consumers.

And the two nations will make it easier for consumers to opt out of unsolicited “spam” emails, wherever in the world they come from. Both recognise the importance of a safe and secure online environment and will advance collaborative solutions to the global issues that affect it.

Keeping the UK at the forefront of the tech revolution

The DEA will be a model for global digital-trade rules, allow our businesses and people to harness new opportunities in the digital economy and support a digital environment that safeguards consumers and businesses. It will keep the UK at the forefront of the technological revolution, as future growth sectors like fintech and lawtech can benefit from deeper cooperation with another advanced economy.

Sell to the world with DIT’s help

DIT can help your business take advantage of opportunities in Asia Pacific and beyond, via a wide range of export support. Visit to create an export plan, explore e-commerce marketplaces, and learn about finance and insurance options. You can also search for your local trade office, who can advise about tailored support you may be eligible for.

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