Due to legislation, surrogate motherhood is currently illegal in Singapore. The MOH has released a directive that prohibits surrogacy services, and any AR centre found to be doing so can have its license suspended or revoked. As it said in clause 4.11.2 of DIRECTIVES FOR PRIVATE HEALTHCARE INSTITUTIONS PROVIDING ASSISTED REPRODUCTION SERVICES : REGULATION 4 OF THE PRIVATE HOSPITALS AND MEDICAL CLINICS REGULATIONS (CAP 248, REG 1):
The following activities shall not be carried out in any AR Centre:
- (I) The buying and selling of embryos, ova and sperm;
- (II) Surrogacy (surrogacy is where a woman is artificially impregnated, whether for monetary consideration or not, with the intention that the child is to be the social child of some other person or couple);
- (III) Fetal reduction purely for social and financial reasons;
- (IV) Sperm sorting techniques in sex selection.
Assisted Reproduction Centres (“AR Centres”) in these Directives refers to all licensed private hospitals and medical clinics which have been authorized by the Director of Medical Services to provide Assisted Reproduction services.
Since surrogacy services is illegal in Singapore, infertile couples who want to become parents in Singapore travel to countries like Ukraine, Malaysia and Laos to seek surrogacy programs.
Also, it should be mentioned that engaging a surrogate mother overseas is quite risky. Even if surrogate motherhood is legal in another country, it doesn’t mean that Singapore courts will enforce agreements for the provision of surrogacy services due to the fact that it is prohibited by law in Singapore.
So for infertile couples in Singapore, IUI (intrauterine insemination) and IVF (in-vitro fertilization) are still the main solutions, although it may be usless in some cases.