Green Guide Profile: Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP


The sustainability practice at full-service law firm Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP has particular expertise advising corporate and financial clients on projects which help decarbonise Southeast Asian infrastructure, housing, and power generation.

The firm advised HSBC Singapore regarding its proposed joint venture with Temasek Holdings to establish a debt financing platform dedicated to sustainable infrastructure projects. Aiming to help meet Southeast Asian carbon reduction targets while building resilience against the impacts of climate change, the parties will initially invest $150m across the renewable energy, waste and water treatment, and sustainable transport sectors.

In the renewable energy industry, the firm assisted the AIMS APAC REIT with the structuring, negotiations, and finalisation of the agreements for the installation and maintenance of a 10 MW solar rooftop PV portfolio on its industrial, logistics, and warehouse properties. The renewable energy certificates generated from the solar power will be used to help the REIT offset its carbon footprint while supporting tenants in their emission-reduction efforts.

Energy contact Shemane Chan is acting for the Mitsubishi Group regarding their implementation of a commercial-scale hydrogen value chain, advising on the regulatory framework regarding hydrogen storage, distribution, and use. The project will supply hydrogen to Singaporean power generation companies, providing an innovative approach to reducing greenhouse gas emissions while pursuing Singapore’s climate action plan.

Alongside being a member of the UN Global Compact, the firm has signed up with LowCarbon SG – a government agency with a capacity-building programme to support businesses in monitoring and reducing their carbon emissions – and engaged PwC to accelerate its decarbonisation path.

Helping the firm meets its objective of becoming carbon neutral by 2030, it appointed a Chief Sustainability Officer to oversee operational carbon-reduction initiatives, and established a Sustainability Interest Group to engage and educate staff on environmental issues.

Rajah & Tann’s Sustainability Practice is headed by Lee Weilin, who is also a Partner of the firm’s Banking & Finance Practice and is a EFFAS Certified ESG Analyst. Weilin has a keen interest in climate change, sustainability, diversity and other ESG issues, and has been involved in many green and sustainability linked financings. She is supported by a multi-disciplinary team of lawyers across Rajah & Tann Asia’s network across Southeast Asia, drawing on the specialist expertise of the lawyers in environmental, infrastructure, M&A, governance, trade, and other critical areas to help businesses stay ahead of rising ESG compliance in the region.

The Sustainability Practice partners include Sandy Foo and Cynthia Wu from our Mergers & Acquisitions Practice, Kala Anandarajah and Alvin Tan from our Competition & Antitrust and Trade Practice, Ng Sey Ming from our Banking & Finance Practice, Shemane Chan, Soh Lip San and Loh Yong Hui from our Construction & Projects Practice, Disa Sim from our Appeals & Issues Practice, and Priscilla Soh from our Commercial Litigation and Restructuring & Insolvency Practices.

Their collaborative efforts underscore our commitment to providing comprehensive and strategic legal support to navigate the evolving landscape of sustainability and regulatory standards.

A pioneering initiative for a law firm in Singapore, Rajah & Tann Singapore formalised its Sustainability Practice in January 2021 to help a growing number of clients stay ahead of rising ESG compliance in the region and assist them in their ESG journey.

The firm provides legal solutions to multi-faceted ESG issues which ranges from advising on compliance with ESG policies and regulatory frameworks, identifying and ringfencing legal risks arising from specific ESG considerations, advising on the legal impact of any particular ESG issues in investments and commercial transactions, acting in sustainable and renewable projects, from origination to construction and development, advising on business conduct, corporate governance and greenwashing, and other sustainability issues. Beyond regulatory compliance, our lawyers contribute their specialised knowledge in diverse areas such as financing, capital markets, funds, infrastructure, international trade, and technology, among others.

The firm has been involved in many “first of its kind“ transactions such as Southeast Asia’s first Sustainable Bonds in the agrifood industry and cutting-edge matters such as advising on one of the world’s largest floating solar farms, carbon trading transactions and the launch of Climate Impact X, a global carbon exchange.

As of November 2022, we are proud to be a Member of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), aligning our organisation with a global initiative committed to advancing sustainable and socially responsible business practices. In our unwavering commitment to environmental sustainability, the firm also took a significant step forward in January 2023 by partnering with LowCarbon SG, a distinguished government agency in Singapore dedicated to fostering a greener business landscape.

Our Sustainability Partners are part of the Industry Advisory Panel, an initiative to engage the private sector on sustainable finance. They also sit on the Boards of important ministries that play pivotal roles in the Singapore Green Plan.

The firm was also invited to several Roundtable discussions on Sustainable Finance and Sustainability Reporting conducted by the Ministry of Law, which showcases the acknowledgement from government agencies of the firm’s impact and influence on sustainability as a professional firm.

Since the formalisation of our Sustainability Practice, we have put together various ESG resources for our clients to drive conversation in this space, including a bilingual guide on Sustainability Investing across Southeast Asia.

Our Sustainability Practice covers a full spectrum of ESG issues across the following non-exhaustive areas:

  1. Carbon credits creation and downstream legal documentation
  2. Environmental audits and ESG due diligence
  3. ESG/impact funds establishments
  4. ESG gap analysis and structuring ESG legal strategies
  5. ESG-related regulatory compliance (eg. relating to sustainability reporting requirements, environmental risk management guidelines) and impact analysis
  6. Green and sustainable funding and financing transactions
  7. Management of legal risks arising from ESG issues (including corruption, greenwashing, employment issues, data breaches)
  8. Renewables and green projects transactions and licensing advice
  9. Structuring technology use for ESG implementation/data collection