GP APAC is the Singapore unit of GP Global, a global oil trader and ship fuel supplier based in the United Arab Emirates that is in default amid allegations that employers carried out fraudulent trades. The moratorium will keep GP APAC’s creditors from independently pursuing legal actions and allow it to resume restructuring efforts, including selling off GP Global’s oil refining and storage assets.
The Singapore unit owes more than $464 million to its top 20 unsecured creditors while its parent had total liabilities of more than $1.2 billion.
GP APAC applied in early February for the moratorium after Singapore-based marine fuel supplier Equatorial Marine Fuel Management Services Pte Ltd obtained a court ruling allowing it to seize GP’s Singapore office to recoup more than $700,000 in claims.
In Tuesday’s hearing the High Court also granted an order that would prevent the seizure, Daniel Tan and Moses Lin, GP APAC’s legal advisers and partners at law firm Shook Lin & Bok LLP, told Reuters.
“This is all GP APAC wanted, a restructuring where everyone is treated equally and there is no ‘queue jumping’,” said Lin.
GP APAC had planned to sell the office to raise S$8.5 million ($6.4 million) as part of its restructuring plan.
We “can proceed to complete the sale of the property to the awaiting buyer,” said Tan.
Under the court order, about S$1 million ($752,000) from the sale of the property would be paid to the court for distribution to creditors when the company’s restructuring scheme is approved, the lawyers said.
“If the scheme is not approved and the moratorium is lifted, then this money may be paid out to Equatorial in accordance with the judgment they have obtained,” said Lin.
GP APAC’s director Roderick Sutton and Equatorial did not respond to requests for comment. $1=S$1.33 Reporting by Roslan Khasawneh; Editing by Christian Schmollinger