Court of Appeal upholds Takashimaya's win in rent calculation dispute with Ngee Ann Development

16 Nov 2017 CaseWatch

In Ngee Ann Development Pte Ltd v Takashimaya Singapore Ltd [2017] SGCA 42, the Court of Appeal dismissed Ngee Ann Development Pte Ltd's appeal on the rent payable by its anchor tenant, Takashimaya Singapore Ltd. The dispute centred on the construction of a rent review clause in the lease ("Lease") and the configuration of the leased premises ("Premises") to be applied by the valuers in determining the "prevailing market rental value". The parties disagreed on whether the Lease intended for the rent valuation to be based on (i) the existing configuration, or (ii) a hypothetical configuration yielding the "highest and best use" of the Premises. The Court of Appeal found that the scope of the expert's jurisdiction was a matter within the purview of the court, and it was appropriate, in the circumstances of the case, for the Court to intervene in advance of the valuers' determination of the "prevailing market rental value" of the Premises.

The Court of Appeal then construed the rent review clause and found that, taking into account the provisions of the Lease and context of the parties' agreement, it was the parties' intention for the prevailing market rental value to be determined based on the existing configuration of the Premises.

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