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Thorough deliberations made on golf course fate: Shanmugam

Law Minister K Shanmugam said the government had looked at alternatives and different approaches when reviewing the lease renewals of affected golf courses.

SINGAPORE: Law Minister K Shanmugam said the government had looked at alternatives and different approaches when reviewing the lease renewals of affected golf courses.

He also stressed that Keppel Club had been made aware of the government's redevelopment plans since 2001.

Mr Shanmugam made these remarks after attending meetings with Keppel Club and the Singapore Island Country Club.

"Our approach is, as I've said, first, if we can, we will extend (the leases). Two, if development is coming through, we will have no choice. Three, as the number of (golf) courses shrinks, we'll have to try to be fair to all, not just existing members but also members of the public and people who are losing their courses. So we try and have some equity," he said.

Mr Shanmugam said the government will also help Keppel Club, as the club makes way for housing redevelopment.

It has offered the club an alternative site to operate as a social club without golf facilities.

"We've said to them, 'Look, we got approval from Cabinet, Ministry of Law, to allocate to them a clubhouse direct, without tender, for social purposes and we will also speak with the operator operating the public course to see whether some arrangements can be worked out with Keppel'," said Mr Shanmugam.

"But at the same time, I think maybe not a lot of Keppel Club members realise that if a new golf course is offered to them, they will need to pay the premium for it, and the chairman was saying that even for the social club, they were not sure whether they can pay the premium."


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