Parliament Briefs: Islandwide study on noise to be done

The LTA will prioritise installing noise barriers in areas where the MRT noise level has exceeded 67 decibels.
The LTA will prioritise installing noise barriers in areas where the MRT noise level has exceeded 67 decibels.ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN

Islandwide study on noise to be done

An in-depth, islandwide study on noise will be conducted, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan told Mr Zaqy Mohamad (Chua Chu Kang GRC).

Mr Zaqy had asked if the noise levels caused by MRT trains passing through Keat Hong Crest and Keat Hong Pride exceeded the National Environment Agency's threshold.

In a written reply, Mr Khaw said the Land Transport Authority's (LTA) preliminary findings suggest that the noise level at the blocks nearest to the MRT tracks is lower than the recommended threshold of 67 decibels averaged over an hour. But he added that an in-depth study will be done.

He also said the LTA will prioritise installing noise barriers in areas where the noise level has exceeded 67 decibels.

Workers compensated for injuries

Nearly 30,700 workers with valid Work Injury Compensation claims over the last two years have been paid compensation by their employers, Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say said yesterday in a written reply to Mr Zainal Sapari (Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC).

Seven workers were not paid by the deadline, because the employers failed to insure the workers and claimed financial difficulties. Another 3,048 claims were withdrawn or found to be invalid.

Employees with medical conditions

Employers in Singapore largely do not discriminate against employees with medical conditions, statistics from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) show.

Minister of State for Manpower Sam Tan told Parliament that in the past four years, there were three such complaints out of 2,100 complaints on unfair employment practices examined by MOM and the Tripartite Alliance for Fair and Progressive Employment Practices.

But checks later determined that no actual discrimination had happened in the three cases, and they had arisen out of miscommunication and misinformation, he said.

17 cases seen by commercial court

The Singapore International Commercial Court (SICC) has heard 17 cases on subjects ranging from construction to banking and finance since it was established in 2015, said Senior Minister of State for Law Indranee Rajah.

New laws were passed yesterday to make clear that the SICC can hear the same cases on international commercial arbitration as the High Court under the International Arbitration Act, she added.

The latest move is expected to increase Singapore's attractiveness as a seat of arbitration. However, it will not give the SICC additional jurisdiction, Ms Indranee said.

Correction note: An earlier version of this story spelt Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan's name incorrectly. We are sorry for the error. 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 10, 2018, with the headline 'Parliament Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe