Prostitution in Singapore

Prostitution in Singapore is legal but pimping and street prostitution are not. Licensed brothels operate in designated areas where mandatory health checks are required. Apart from legal licensed brothels, commercial sex workers can be found in many 'massage' or 'spa' establishments, which are situated all around the country. In recent years, a new genre of massage parlour has emerged in Singapore. Known as 'Tuina' outlets, these massage parlours typically employ scantily clad women from mainland China. For them, massage is just a pretext for the sexual services which are the main menu. Technically, sex in these massage parlours are illegal, with a jail term for the operator if anti-vice raids on the premises yields evidence of commercial sex going-ons. Yet, virtually everyone who visits such establishments are fully aware of the sexual services provided within, and are there precisely because of it.

On Oct 4 2005, the Singapore government decided it may raise the minimum age for prostitutes from 16 to 18 to bring its laws in line with international standards.

Under current laws, having sex with women under 16 is considered statutory rape, punishable by up to five years in jail and a fine of S$10,000 (US$5900).

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