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Hyflux says no definitive deal reached with white knight Utico

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Hyflux on Wednesday night clarified that a definitive agreement had not been entered into with Utico, pending resolution on "certain final outstanding issues" in the draft definitive agreements.

HYFLUX on Wednesday night clarified that a definitive agreement had not been entered into with Utico, pending resolution on "certain final outstanding issues" in the draft definitive agreements.

The embattled water firm was responding to media reports over a statement Utico, a United Arab Emirates utility firm, released on Tuesday stating that it had "signed and released" a restructuring agreement with Hyflux.

"The company and Utico are however in highly advanced discussions and will continue to engage with each other with a view to resolving such final outstanding issues and finalising and entering into the definitive agreement as soon as possible," Hyflux added in its statement issued just before midnight. 

In its statement on Tuesday, Utico said the restructuring deal "finds a resolution" for creditors and PNP investors and development projects that have been "languishing since the moratorium" in May 2018.

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It also added that "swift action" would be taken to bring all projects up to speed, as well as take on new projects, together with the support of Hyflux’s board and management. Any details of the agreement were not disclosed.

When contacted by The Business Times at the time, Hyflux said that an announcement would be made in a filing with the Singapore Exchange. But no announcement was forthcoming as at press time.

Hyflux on Aug 16 said it would engage exclusively with Utico until Aug 26 as its negotiations were the most advanced among all potential investors.

This date was also the deadline for Hyflux to enter a definitive agreement for Utico’s intended investment – a S$300 million equity injection and a S$100 shareholder loan for 88 per cent of the water firm.