Singapore authorities investigating Noble Group over suspected disclosure and accounting breaches

Beleaguered commodities and shipping giant Noble Group is being jointly investigated by the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) of the Singapore Police Force (SPF), the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) for on suspicision of issuing false and misleading statements and breaches of disclosures under the securities act.

Headquartered in Hong Kong Noble is listed on the Singapore Exchange and has come under heavy criticism over is financial disclosures in recent years.

The joint statement by CAD, SPF, MAS and ACRA said that were “jointly investigating suspected false and misleading statements and breaches of disclosure requirements under the Securities and Futures Act” by Noble Group. They were also investigating potential non-compliance with accounting standards under Section 201 of the Companies Act by wholly owned subsidiary Noble Resources International (NRI).

“ACRA has notified NRI’s Board of Directors that ACRA has made findings of suspected breaches of the Companies Act and has required the directors to furnish further information as part of the ongoing investigation,” the statement said.

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The move follows an extensive review of the company's accounts from 31 December 2012 to 31 December 2016.

The statement added: “CAD and MAS have directed Noble Group Ltd and NRI to produce documents relating to the preparation of Noble Group’s financial statements, following a thorough review of other relevant information, including information referred to the authorities by the Singapore Exchange Regulation Pte Ltd and other third parties.”

The investigations come over three years after public allegations by a former employee under the guise of Iceberg Reaserch that it overvalued its businesses.

Read more: Noble 'completely rejects' report alleging accounting irregularities

Singapore authorities reviewing research report on Noble

Posted 20 November 2018

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Marcus Hand

Editor, Seatrade Maritime News

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