Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Commentary: Malaysia’s new PM Anwar needs to get it right for the country

Malaysia Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim has made the right moves in his first week in office. Going forward, he has a slew of challenges, says ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute's Dr Norshahril Saat.

Malaysia's newly appointed Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim (centre) takes part in the swearing-in ceremony at the 
National Palace in Kuala Lumpur on Nov 24, 2022. (Photo: AFP/POOL/Mohd Rasfan)

Norshahril Saat

01 Dec 2022 

SINGAPORE: Within his first week of taking office, Malaysia’s new prime minister Anwar Ibrahim is already sending out good vibes that change in the country is under way. He must keep this momentum going, against all odds.

Anwar’s decision to not take his prime minister’s salary is a populist move. Granted, it is a campaign promise fulfilled. It will not tackle inequality and high rising prices in the country. But this symbolic move signals that he is sensitive to the struggles facing ordinary Malaysians.

Friday, December 2, 2022

Here’s How Much You Need To Earn To Be ‘Rich’ in 23 Major Countries Around the World

Jan 14, 2022

By Nicole Spector

AS Inc. / Shutterstock.com

Here’s a look at how much you need to be considered rich in 23 countries around the world.

[The list seems to be in alphabetical order. A more obvious order would have either been in descending or ascending order of the value of the top 1%. In which case, United Arab Emirates would be #1 ($689,468), Singapore would be second ($627,111), and the United States, third ($506,752). Germany would be fourth ($327,069).]

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Commentary: What the world would lose with the demise of Twitter

International organisations and government agencies have invested significant resources in using Twitter and have come to rely on the platform, says a researcher.

In Twitter's 15 years of existence, the platform has become the predominant communication channel for political and
government leaders, businesses, brands celebrities and news media. (Photo: AFP/File/EMMANUEL DUNAND)

Anjana Susarla

22 Nov 2022 

EAST LANSING, Michigan: What do a cybersecurity researcher building a system to generate alerts for detecting security threats and vulnerabilities, a wildfire watcher who tracks the spread of forest fires, and public health professionals trying to predict enrolment in health insurance exchanges have in common?

They all rely on analysing data from Twitter.

Monday, November 21, 2022

Malaysia GE15 result a hung parliament scenario; both PH and PN in pole position to form government

All eyes are now on the negotiations with possible partners, including the parties from Sabah and Sarawak.

Muhyiddin Yassin and Anwar Ibrahim speak during their respective party's press conference on Nov 20, 2022.
(Photos: CNA/Fadza Ishak/Gaya Chandramohan)

Pichayada Promchertchoo

Rashvinjeet S Bedi

20 Nov 2022 

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s 15th General Election (GE15) has resulted in a hung parliament scenario, with the Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalitions almost neck and neck in terms of the number of seats won.

With neither coalition having the numbers for an outright majority in the 222-seat Lower House, both coalitions will now negotiate with their potential partners in a bid to form the next government. 

Sunday, November 20, 2022

New MIT system could cool buildings up to 10℃— without electricity

The system worked three times better than today’s state-of-the-art passive cooling system.

By Sam Jarman

October 13, 2022

As the world’s climate continues to heat up, the global demand for air conditioning is now skyrocketing. In 2019, the need for cooling drew in 8.5% of the world’s total electricity consumption, equating to some 1 billion tons of CO2 emissions.

As more air conditioning units draw ever more power each year, we now appear trapped in a cycle, only accelerating the problem of global heating further.

Friday, November 18, 2022

Commentary: What Elon Musk misses about how this generation works

Young people who are prepared to quit if they cannot define work on their own terms aren't selfish or immature. Employers who want to ban working from home need to understand a crucial mindset shift, says the Financial Times’ Gillian Tett.

FILE PHOTO: Working at home and in the office in a hybrid work arrangement. (Photo: iStock)

Gillian Tett

18 Nov 2022

LONDON: The great attrition of employees shows no signs of slowing. Recent reports from management consultant McKinsey suggest that as many as 40 per cent are considering leaving their jobs, usually to seek a different type of career or “non-traditional work”, including temporary or part-time roles.

According to one survey, money is an issue, but it’s definitely not the only issue. “Meaningfulness of work” and “adequacy of workforce flexibility” around issues such as working from home are also front of mind.

The key, it seems, is a sense of personal control, both to define how and where work happens, as well as how it aligns with workers’ personal values.

Monday, November 14, 2022

Resilience, self-sufficiency important but world will be worse off if we go too far: Lawrence Wong

Shipping containers seen at PSA Tanjong Pagar Terminal. (File Photo: CNA/Calvin Oh)

Yasmin Begum

14 Nov 2022 

SINGAPORE: Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong on Sunday (Nov 13) said that resilience and self-sufficiency are important attributes, but added that the world will be worse off if countries go too far.

At the evening reception for participants of the 17th Asia-Pacific Conference (APK) of German Business, Mr Wong noted that part of the desire of wanting to have greater resilience is about having more reliable networks.

This, Mr Wong said, meant complying fully with all international rules and obligations. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Greenwashing: UN experts at COP27: Corporate climate pledges rife with greenwashing

09 Nov 2022 

SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt: Promises by companies, banks and cities to achieve net zero emissions often amount to little more than greenwashing, according to a UN expert group report published on Tuesday (Nov 8), which set out proposed new standards to harden net zero claims.

The report, released at the COP 27 climate conference in Egypt, is intended to draw a "red line" around false claims of progress in the fight against global warming that can confuse investors and policy makers.

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Businessman behind Mamee Monster snack dies aged 96, tributes pour in online

Pang Chin Hin (left, standing), the Malaysian businessman behind the widely loved Mamee Monster snack (right), died on
Nov 5, 2022 at the age of 96. 
Pierre Pang/Instagram, Mamee

Pang Chin Hin, founder of Mamee-Double Deckers Sdn Bhd, created the famous Mamee snack, Mister Potato chips, Double Decker shrimp crackers, Corntoz corn snacks and other food products
After the news of his death, thousands of tributes poured in from online users
Many shared fond memories of sharing Mamee with friends back in school, while others remembered buying the snack packets in bulk to collect Transformers and Yu-Gi-Oh merchandise


November 8, 2022

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Commentary: Dissecting Singapore’s rare offer of a live TV debate to Richard Branson and what his refusal means

AFP, Raj Nadarajan/TODAYUltimately, the Government’s position must prevail in the court of domestic public opinion,
which has shown robust support for and confidence in Singapore’s approach to drugs, including the use of the
discretionary death penalty, says the author.


November 2, 2022

After nine days of silence, British billionaire Richard Branson has turned down an invitation to a live televised debate in Singapore with Home Affairs and Law Minister K Shanmugam on the Republic’s approach towards drugs and the death penalty.

In a statement addressed to the Singapore minister on Monday (Oct 31), Mr Branson said a TV debate was not a suitable platform for a complex issue like the death penalty.

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Commentary: Japan’s empty villages are a warning for China

Beijing should take note of the risks posed by a property bubble and demographic changes, says the Financial Times’ Leo Lewis.

In Japanese village Nagoro, life-sized dolls outnumber the living. Japan’s population is projected to shrink by almost a
third by 2065. (Photo: Mediacorp)

Leo Lewis

01 Nov 2022

TOKYO: Next year, according to a recent estimate, Japan will have roughly 11 million unoccupied residences — slightly more than the entire residential stock of Australia. By 2038, under one scenario in the same forecast, just under a third of Japan’s dwelling units could lie empty.

A gloomy prognosis for Japan, where spooky, semi-abandoned rural villages already abound, but a portent of much bigger trouble, potentially, for China.

Monday, October 31, 2022

Branson says no to TV debate with Shanmugam, says conversation on death penalty 'needs local voices'

A composite photo showing British billionaire Richard Branson and Singapore Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam.
(Photos: AFP, CNA)

31 Oct 2022

SINGAPORE: British billionaire Richard Branson declined the Ministry of Home Affairs’ (MHA) invitation to a debate on Singapore’s approach towards drugs and the death penalty, saying the conversation “needs local voices” and that a television debate “cannot do the complexity of the death penalty any service”.

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Need for speed: Xi's new generals offer cohesion over China's possible Taiwan plans

Visitors stand in front of a giant screen displaying Chinese President Xi Jinping next to a flag of the Communist Party of
 China, at the Military Museum of the Chinese People's Revolution in Beijing, China, Oct 8, 2022.
(File photo: REUTERS/Florence Lo)

27 Oct 2022 

HONG KONG: Chinese President Xi Jinping's new generals may have been selected for their political loyalty to him, but those ties could serve at least one vital military purpose in any Taiwan invasion plan: ensuring cohesion and decisiveness.

Although the Politburo's seven-man Standing Committee would make the ultimate decision on any Taiwan action, the Central Military Commission would forge and execute the battle plan, eight Asian and Western military attaches say.

What happened before Hu Jintao was escorted out of Congress? CNA captured rare footage in lead-up

A rare look at the moments leading up to the unexpected exit of former Chinese president Hu Jintao from the closing of the Communist Party Congress on Oct 22. Mr Hu was seen speaking to Mr Li Zhanshu, chairman of the National People’s Congress, China’s legislature.

Chairman of China’s legislature, the National People’s Congress, Li Zhanshu speaking to former Chinese President Hu
Jintao moments before Mr Hu was unexpectedly escorted out of the Communist Party Congress. (Image: CNA)

Olivia Siong

25 Oct 2022

BEIJING: Rare footage captured by CNA in the moments before former Chinese president Hu Jintao's unexpected departure from the closing session of the Communist Party Congress on Saturday (Oct 22) may shed new light on the incident.

Friday, October 28, 2022

Commentary: Xi cements power at Chinese Communist Party congress, but is still exposed on the economy

For Chinese President Xi Jinping, getting the numbers to endorse himself and his underlings in leadership roles is one thing; shifting the economy back on track is quite another, says this writer.

A screen shows live news coverage of China’s President Xi Jinping speaking after introducing China’s new Politburo
Standing Committee, at a restaurant in Foshan city, in China’s southern Guangdong province on Oct 23, 2022.
(Photo: AFP/Jade Gao)

Tony Walker

25 Oct 2022

MELBOURNE: Xi Jinping’s clean sweep in elevating trusted allies to the commanding heights of the Chinese Communist Party is a political outcome that has implications beyond China’s borders.

Xi sits virtually unchallenged, for the time being, at the apex of a political organisation that oversees a country with the world’s second-largest economy, a rapidly modernising military and, perhaps most importantly, global ambitions to match its growing economic and military strength.

Global warming palpable for 96% of humans: Study

The researchers' tool measures the likelihood that unusually warm weather at a specific location on any given day
is due to climate change (Photo: AFP/Asaad NIAZI)

28 Oct 2022 

PARIS: Whether they realised it or not, some 7.6 billion people - 96 per cent of humanity - felt global warming's impact on temperatures over the last 12 months, researchers have said.

But some regions felt it far more sharply and frequently than others, according to a report based on peer-reviewed methods from Climate Central, a climate science think tank.

People in tropical regions and on small islands surrounded by heat-absorbing oceans were disproportionately impacted by human-induced temperature increases to which they barely contributed.

China’s chest-thumping nationalism now goes too far, movement’s godfather says

The New York Times

Mr Wang Xiaodong, a writer once called the standard-bearer of Chinese nationalism, at a bookstore in Beijing on Sept 1, 2022.

October 27, 2022

BEIJING — Mr Wang Xiaodong once gave a speech declaring that “China’s forward march is unstoppable”. He published essays calling on China to build up its military. He co-wrote a book, bluntly titled “China Is Unhappy”, in which he said the country should aim to control more land and shape global politics. “We should lead this world,” he said.

Now, Mr Wang, a 66-year-old Beijing-based writer once called the standard-bearer of Chinese nationalism, has another message: That nationalism has gone too far.

Only 5% of plastic waste generated by US last year was recycled, report says

Americans discarded 51m tons of plastic in 2021 – of which almost 95% ended up in landfills, oceans or scattered in the atmosphere

Not a single type of plastic packaging in the US meets the definition of recyclable used by either the FTC or
the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s new plastic economy initiative. Photograph: Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images

Nina Lakhani 

Mon 24 Oct 2022

Only 5% of the mountains of plastic waste generated by US households last year was recycled, according to new research by Greenpeace.

Americans discarded 51m tons of wrappers, bottles and bags in 2021 – about 309lb of plastic per person – of which almost 95% ended up in landfills, oceans or scattered in the atmosphere in tiny toxic particles.

The plastics problem is not just down to wanton consumerism or laziness – in fact the situation would still be bad even if every household separated every piece of plastic and disposed of it in a dedicated recycling plant, according to Greenpeace.

Not a single type of plastic packaging in the US meets the definition of recyclable used by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s new plastic economy initiative, the report found.

Tuesday, October 25, 2022

It's a man's world: No more women leaders in China's Communist Party

Veteran politician Sun Chunlan was absent from the Central Committee list published on state media
(File photo: AFP/Leo Ramirez)

24 Oct 2022

BEIJING: The Communist Party Congress has laid bare the striking gender imbalance in the upper echelons of Chinese politics, with not a single woman making the 24-person Politburo for the first time in at least a quarter of a century.

As Xi Jinping and his allies concentrated power over the weekend, the party's highest-ranking woman leader retired.

Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Relocation of otters from Seletar was 'last resort' given the presence of pups and location of burrow: Experts

Setting up barriers to prevent the otters from accessing private estates and ponds is still a critical first measure, said experts.

Otters at Seletar estate in Singapore. (Photo: Otter Working Group/Marjorie Chong)

Koh Wan Ting

18 Oct 2022

SINGAPORE: The otters that were relocated from Seletar had been moved as a last resort due to the location of their burrow and the presence of pups.

Experts who spoke to CNA on Tuesday (Oct 18) said that exclusion measures – setting up barriers that would prevent otters from accessing compounds or fish ponds – remained a priority.

Last week, the family of six smooth-coated otters – three adults and three pups – were moved to an undisclosed area where they could access their natural food sources, the National Parks Board (NParks) said on Monday.

The authorities carried out the operation with other members of the Otter Working Group, which includes the Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES), Mandai Wildlife Group, National University of Singapore (NUS), OtterCity, and OtterWatch.

China sees 'much faster timeline' on taking Taiwan, Blinken warns

Blinken made his comments on China at Stanford University (Photo: POOL/AFP/JOSH EDELSON)

18 Oct 2022

SAN FRANCISCO: Beijing wants to seize Taiwan "on a much faster timeline" than previously considered, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Monday (Oct 17), warning that President Xi Jinping was leading China in a more aggressive direction.

Xi is on the cusp of securing a third five-year term at the helm of the world's most populous nation, delivering a landmark Communist Party Congress speech on Sunday that hailed his decade in power and restated his vow to one day "reunify", or forcefully take, Taiwan.

"We've seen a very different China emerge in recent years under Xi Jinping's leadership," Blinken told a forum at Stanford University with former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice.

"It is more repressive at home; it's more aggressive abroad. And in many instances that poses a challenge to our own interests as well as to our own values," he added.

Blinken accused Xi of "creating tremendous tension" by changing the approach toward self-ruled Taiwan, which China's Communist Party has never controlled but claims as its own.

He said China had made a "fundamental decision that the status quo was no longer acceptable, and that Beijing was determined to pursue reunification on a much faster timeline", though he gave no hard estimate or date.

Senior US military figures have previously sounded the alarm that China has expanded its military forces to the point where it could soon have the capability to pull off an invasion of Taiwan.

China's stance has long been that it seeks "peaceful reunification" with Taiwan but reserves the right to use force if necessary, especially if the island ever formally declares independence.

But the rhetoric and actions towards Taiwan have become more pronounced under Xi, China's most assertive leader in a generation.

He has tied taking Taiwan to his landmark "great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation" and has previously said the goal of reunification cannot continue to be passed indefinitely from generation to generation.

In Sunday's speech, he repeated similar themes, saying the "wheels of history are rolling on towards China's reunification" and that "we reserve the option of taking all measures necessary".


Russia's recent invasion of Ukraine, which China has not condemned, has also raised fears that Beijing might try something similar against Taiwan's 23 million people.

Ties between Washington and Beijing have been at a decade-low ebb under both the administrations of Donald Trump and his successor Joe Biden, over a range of issues from trade to security and human rights.

But Blinken said the world's two largest economies should be willing to cooperate on shared interests.

He said the world "fundamentally expects" the two powers to work together on climate change, global health and possibly drug trafficking.

Beijing "just has to be responsive to demand signals that it's getting from countries around the world to be a positive actor, not a negative actor, on issues that concern them".

China cut cooperation with the United States on climate change and drug trafficking in August as part of its protest against a visit to Taiwan by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, which also saw Beijing launch its biggest military drills yet around the island.

Xi is widely expected to meet President Biden on the sidelines of a Group of 20 summit next month in Bali, their first meeting since the US leader took office.

Source: AFP/vc

Monday, October 17, 2022

China’s plans for military growth driven by ‘internal factors’, territorial security, say experts

File photo of a Chinese soldier holding his country's flag. (File photo: AFP/File/Vyacheslav Oseledko)

Jalelah Abu Baker

17 Oct 2022 

SINGAPORE: China’s plans for military growth, outlined by President Xi Jinping on Sunday (Oct 16), are driven by “internal factors” and territorial security, experts said.

Opening a week-long Chinese Community Party (CCP) meeting, Mr Xi said the country will accelerate the building of a world-class military and strengthen its ability to build a strategic deterrent capability.

“We will work faster to modernise military theory, personnel and weapons,” Mr Xi said in the nearly two-hour speech.

“This is mostly reaction to internal factors like history, like nationalism sentiment, rather than, you know some kind of ambition,” Dr Lance Gore from the National University of Singapore’s East Asian Institute told CNA’s Asia Now.

Friday, October 14, 2022

MAS tightens monetary policy for the fifth time in a year to dampen inflation

The central bank said that a further tightening of monetary policy is needed to help “ensure that price pressures are dampened over the next few quarters”.

Tang See Kit

14 Oct 2022 

SINGAPORE: The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has tightened monetary policy for the fifth time in a year, allowing a further strengthening in the Singapore dollar to help dampen inflation.

In its half-yearly monetary policy statement released on Friday (Oct 14), the Singapore central bank said it will re-centre the mid-point of the Singapore dollar nominal effective exchange rate (S$NEER) policy band “up to its prevailing level”.

The slope and width of the band were left unchanged.

Thursday, October 13, 2022

Commentary: Putin has to be forced onto an off-ramp, not merely offered one

The West has argued President Vladimir Putin needs the option of calling a ceasefire that appears to offer Russia a degree of military success in Ukraine. But it is increasingly clear Putin will not take this option, says an academic.
A medical worker runs past a burning car after a Russian attack in Kyiv, Ukraine, Oct 10, 2022.
(AP Photo/Roman Hrytsyna)

Rod Thornton

12 Oct 2022 

LONDON: The world is now witness to a new phase in the Ukraine war. The attack on the Kerch bridge and the subsequent retaliatory Russian missiles strikes on Kyiv and other Ukrainian cities indicate that the war is escalating.

But just how far will this escalation go and is a full-scale nuclear exchange – however unthinkable – on the cards at some future point?

It is coming to be understood that the war in Ukraine needs to be prevented from assuming proportions that are dangerous for the entire world – and not just for Ukraine.

One argument advanced by US president Joe Biden last week is that the West should offer the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, an “off-ramp” – that is, a way out for him so that he can call a ceasefire that appears to offer Russia a degree of military success in Ukraine that Putin can take to his people and sell as a “victory”.

But it seems to be a pious hope. Putin, it is becoming increasingly clear, will have to be forced onto an off-ramp rather than merely being offered one.

Sunday, October 9, 2022

Commentary: Don't put down 'overpriced' food in New York's first Singapore hawker centre

New York City’s first Singapore hawker centre has drawn flak for its high prices. Even amid rising food and energy costs, the burden is placed on hawkers to keep their dishes affordable, says cookbook author Pamelia Chia.

Pamelia Chia

01 Oct 2022 

DAYLESFORD, Australia: “Singapore is very pathetic, no Singaporean restaurants around the world … Hawkers should be looking overseas.”

So said KF Seetoh, one of Singapore’s biggest proponents of hawker food, in a January 2021 podcast episode that I recorded with him. We were speaking about the importance of Singapore hawkers earning a spot on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list.

Singapore ranks No. 1 for best roads in the world, here's what some local drivers really think

OCTOBER 05, 2022


By now, it should not come as a surprise that Singapore typically crushes the competition in many world rankings.

And so it did, in a recent list of best roads around the world, where Singapore came in — you guessed it — first. 

It scored 9.44 over 10 points in terms of its road quality in a global study by Zutobi, which also took into account the number of road deaths and the relative size of the road network.

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Revealed, 2 F-35A Fighters Capable of Paralyzing 6 F-15SG Fighters at Exercise Pitch Black 2022

September 26, 2022 

The presence of the RAAF’s fleet of F-35A stealth jets for the first time at this year’s biennial multinational exercise, Exercise Pitch Black, in Australia aroused the curiosity of many people. The first question is, is it true that the F-35 is sophisticated and will be difficult to beat by generation four plus fighters?

Exercise Pitch Black 2022 was attended by 17 countries with nearly 100 aircraft and 2,500 personnel. Germany and South Korea were the two debutant countries among the 17 participating countries. Korea sent KF-16U which has been equipped with AESA radar. Meanwhile, Germany for the first time sent a fleet of Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets. Other jets that also participated were the Rafale from France, the Su-30MKI from India, and the F-16AM/BM and F-16-52ID from Indonesia.

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

The SR 71 was at least 60 years ahead of its time.

The question was …is the SR 71 a product of its time? (Time frame would be late 1950s to 1966.)Former U-2 technician Damien Leimback wrote; the following *In my opinion, this man is brilliant.*He Disagrees with the question that the SR 71 was a product of its time.

I disagree because of the technologies that had to be invented or perfected in order for the plane to work that did not exist before the types (I include the A-12 here) introduction.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Consumers could pay refundable deposit of 10-20 cents for plastic, metal drink containers under NEA's plan to cut waste

Nuria Ling/TODAY

  • To boost recycling rates, NEA is proposing a scheme that requires consumers to pay 10 to 20 cents more for pre-packaged plastic or metal beverages
  • The agency is getting feedback from the public from Sept 20 to Oct 14 on the scheme, which could be rolled out in mid-2024
  • Under the scheme, consumers would have to return their beverage containers either over-the-counter or at reverse vending machines to claim their deposit back
  • The operator of the scheme will be required to achieve a target of at least 80 per cent return rate


September 21, 2022

SINGAPORE — From mid-2024, consumers may have to pay an extra 10 to 20 cents as a deposit for drinks in plastic bottles or metal cans, on top of the retail price, which they can get back by taking the container to a return point such as a supermarket, the National Environment Agency (NEA) said on Tuesday (Sept 20).

NEA is seeking public feedback on this proposal, which is aimed at boosting recycling rates, reducing waste disposed of and reducing carbon emissions as part of the effort to tackle climate change. 

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Plastic Recycling Doesn’t Work and Will Never Work

If the plastics industry is following the tobacco industry’s playbook, it may never admit to the failure of plastics recycling.

By Judith Enck and Jan Dell

MAY 30, 2022

About the authors: Judith Enck is a former EPA regional administrator, the president of Beyond Plastics, and a visiting professor at Bennington College. Jan Dell is a chemical engineer and the founder of the Last Beach Cleanup.

Americans support recycling. We do too. But although some materials can be effectively recycled and safely made from recycled content, plastics cannot. Plastic recycling does not work and will never work. The United States in 2021 had a dismal recycling rate of about 5 percent for post-consumer plastic waste, down from a high of 9.5 percent in 2014, when the U.S. exported millions of tons of plastic waste to China and counted it as recycled—even though much of it wasn’t.

Recycling in general can be an effective way to reclaim natural material resources. The U.S.’s high recycling rate of paper, 68 percent, proves this point. The problem with recycling plastic lies not with the concept or process but with the material itself.

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Singapore among world's 20 wealthiest cities in 2022 — report

Surin Murugiah

September 19, 2022 

KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 19): In 2022, the US dominates the list of the world’s top 20 wealthiest cities, with six American cities listed.

Two Swiss cantons also make the top 20, along with eight cities in the Asia-Pacific region.

Tiny city state Singapore also made it to the top 20.

In its Global Citizens Report for the third quarter of 2022, residence and citizenship programme consultancy Henley & Partners (H&P) said the first half of 2022 was a negative period for global wealth formation.

It said high-net-worth individual numbers worldwide were down by 5% in the six-month period to June 2022.

Saturday, September 17, 2022

Cock-a-doodle-don't: Sin Ming resident spends $7,000 on soundproof windows to block out roosters' crowing

SEPTEMBER 15, 2022


Xu shared that her family had installed soundproof windows to prevent the roosters from disturbing their sleep. 
Shin Min Daily News

How far would you go to get a good night's sleep?

One woman, fed up with roosters' crowing under her block for years, recently spent a large sum of money on soundproof windows so she'd get some peace at night.

58-year-old Xu said that the number of roosters appearing under her block along Sin Ming Avenue has increased over the past three years, Shin Min Daily News reported on Tuesday (Sept 13).

There are now more than 20 free-roaming chicken in the estate, the frustrated housewife said.

"They would fly up to the trees and crow at 2 or 3am. Closing the doors and windows didn't help [to block out the noise].

Thursday, September 15, 2022

More young Singaporeans considering renting and flat sharing as they find current property prices too high: Study

SEPTEMBER 11, 2022


One-fifth of respondents aged 22 to 29 felt that current property prices are too high. The Straits Times file

SINGAPORE — More young Singaporeans, compared with older age groups, are considering renting and flat sharing as they find current property prices too high.

Even then, most still intend to buy a home within the next two years, a consumer sentiment study released by real estate portal PropertyGuru last week showed.

WP calls for BTO eligibility age for singles to be lowered, boost in HDB flat supply

In an adjournment motion, Workers’ Party MP Louis Chua asked the Government to take “urgent and decisive steps” to increase the availability of HDB housing.

HDB flats in Singapore. (File photo: TODAY/Ooi Boon Keong)

Chew Hui Min

13 Sep 2022 

SINGAPORE: Workers’ Party Member of Parliament Louis Chua on Tuesday (Sep 13) made a case for lowering the age at which Singaporean singles can apply for a new Housing Board (HDB) flat to 28, while urging the Government to up the supply of public housing for all.

Sunday, September 11, 2022

Singapore welcomes ratification of Flight Information Region Agreement with Indonesia: MFA

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (centre left) and Indonesia president Joko Widodo, flanked by Cabinet ministers,
meet at the fifth Singapore-Indonesia Leader's Retreat on Jan 25, 2022.

September 8, 2022

SINGAPORE — Singapore welcomes Indonesia's ratification of the Agreement on the Realignment of the Boundary between the Jakarta Flight Information Region (FIR) and the Singapore FIR, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said on Thursday (Sept 8) in response to media queries.

Under the FIR agreement, signed in January at the Singapore-Indonesia Leaders’ Retreat in Bintan, Indonesia will delegate to Singapore the provision of air navigation services in portions of the airspace within the realigned Jakarta FIR.

The agreement will remain in force for 25 years and shall be extended by mutual consent if both parties find it beneficial to do so.

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Commentary: Ignoring China’s disastrous ‘three Ds’ could be a global risk

Disease, drought and debt will have worldwide consequences, says the Financial Times' Megan Greene.
A section of a parched riverbed is seen along the Yangtze River in Jiujiang in China's central Jiangxi province
on Aug 19, 2022. (Photo: AFP/STR)

Megan Greene

08 Sep 2022 

PROVIDENCE, Rhode Island: In a world beset by multiple crises, officials may be looking past the biggest threat of all: China.

The talk among central bankers at the Jackson Hole Federal Reserve Conference focused on inflation and rising interest rates. Absent was any mention that just 10 days beforehand, the People’s Bank of China did exactly the opposite, unexpectedly cutting its key interest rate.

China is beset by three distressing Ds: Debt, disease and drought. They belie a slowdown that is not raising sufficient alarm bells among investors and policymakers. China remains heavily integrated into the global supply chain and is a potential driver of global demand as one of the biggest markets for foreign goods and services.

Monday, September 5, 2022

NDP: Goodbye, floating platform, hello, National Stadium?

The Marina Bay floating platform hosted its last National Day Parade this year. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Ng Wei Kai

5 Sept 2022

SINGAPORE - First built as a temporary stage for the National Day Parade (NDP) in 2007, the Marina Bay floating platform hosted its last parade this year ahead of its transformation into the permanent NS Square.

But before this project is completed in 2026, Singaporeans may see the return of the iconic Kallang Wave to the National Stadium.

Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen suggested in July that future NDPs could be held there after next year's edition at the Padang.

Friday, September 2, 2022

Commentary: Here's how S'pore can 'get real' and be psychologically prepared for possible conflict in region

Soldiers salute from their military vehicles during the 54th National Day Parade in Singapore on Aug 9, 2019. AFP


September 1, 2022

For Singaporeans who have grown up in an era of relative peace and prosperity, the prospect of armed conflict in Singapore’s immediate neighbourhood may seem unimaginable.

The state of geopolitical undercurrents, however, suggests a starker reality.

As Sino-United States (US) relations worsen and tensions heighten, the prospects of great power competition escalating into unintended conflict have never been greater in the Asia Pacific region.

Against this backdrop, Prime Minister Lee called for Singaporeans to "get real" and be psychologically prepared for regional conflict in his National Day Rally 2022 speech.

This reality check could not have been more timely. Singaporeans must be prepared to ride what Senior Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam described as a "perfect long storm" — a confluence of lasting structural geopolitical, economic and existential insecurities that reinforce one another.

Thursday, September 1, 2022

159,000 low-wage workers will earn at least S$1,400 from Sep 1

Local Qualifying Salary will not be further raised 'for now', wage increases to be sustainable: Zaqy Mohamad
A cleaner wiping a table at Sims Vista Market and Food Centre.
(Photo: Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment)

01 Sep 2022 

SINGAPORE: About 159,000 lower-wage workers will earn at least S$1,400 under a new local qualifying salary (LQS) requirement that kicks in on Thursday (Sep 1).

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Commentary: Synthetic milk made without cows? That could radically disrupt the dairy industry

No cows needed. Unlike synthetic meat - which can struggle to match the complexity and texture of animal meat - synthetic milk is touted as having the same taste, look and feel as normal dairy milk, says this writer.
File photo. Draining leftover milk from the udder of a cow at a dairy farm in Dmytrivka, eastern Ukraine, Aug 10, 2022.
(AP Photo/David Goldman)

Milena Bojovic

31 Aug 2022 

SYDNEY: The global dairy industry is changing. Among the disruptions is competition from food alternatives not produced using animals – including potential challenges posed by synthetic milk.

Sunday, August 21, 2022

From reduced mask requirements to the repeal of 377A: 7 key takeaways from NDR 2022

A sea of Singapore flags at the National Day Parade on Aug 9, 2022. (File photo: CNA/Try Sutrisno Foo)

Kurt Ganapathy

21 Aug 2022 

SINGAPORE: In his 2022 National Day Rally speech on Sunday (Aug 21), Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong addressed the COVID-19 situation in Singapore and the rising cost of living amid geopolitical tensions.

The repeal of Section 377A of the Penal Code and the enshrinement of marriage in Singapore’s Constitution were among the key policy and legislative announcements Mr Lee made during his speech at the Institute of Technical Education headquarters in Ang Mo Kio.

A significant portion of the Prime Minister’s speech was also dedicated to upcoming infrastructure projects that will help the country retain its status as a hub for trade and aviation.

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

China unveils new perks aimed at boosting slowing birth rate

16 Aug 2022

BEIJING: China on Tuesday (Aug 16) announced a slew of perks aimed at encouraging families to have more babies, as birth rates hit a record low and officials warned that the population will start to shrink by 2025.

Although Beijing ended its "one-child rule" in 2016 and last year allowed couples to have three children, birth rates have
slipped over the past five years. (Photo: AFP/Noel Celis)

Friday, August 5, 2022

Commentary: China's rise is still not a given

China’s ability to face future challenges will be constrained by the fact that it’s still a developing country, says an observer.

By Henry Storey

15 Jul 2020 
[Note: The news article is two years old.]

MELBOURNE: When discussing the rise of China, a sense of inevitability often pervades.

China’s sheer population size and economic base will inevitably see it become the dominant regional power – or so the argument goes. China’s faster reopening from COVID-19 lockdowns has added to such arguments. [This was in early 2020. Situation has changed in 2022.]

But just how far will China rise? Given the price tag of Australia’s new defence posture – and the significant opportunity costs at a time when COVID-19 will stretch budgets – it is worth still asking the question.

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Pair of new studies point to natural Covid origin

Fusion Medical Animation/Unsplash

The researchers concluded it was unlikely that there was human circulation prior to November 2019.

July 27, 2022

WASHINGTON — An animal market in China's Wuhan really was the epicentre of the Covid pandemic, according to a pair of new studies in the journal Science published Tuesday (July 26) that claimed to have tipped the balance in the debate about the virus' origins.

Answering the question of whether the disease spilled over naturally from animals to humans, or was the result of a lab accident, is viewed as vital to averting the next pandemic and saving millions of lives.

The first paper analysed the geographic pattern of Covid cases in the outbreak's first month, December 2019, showing the first cases were tightly clustered around the Huanan Market.

The second examined genomic data from the earliest cases to study the virus' early evolution, concluding it was unlikely the coronavirus circulated widely in humans prior to November 2019.

Both were previously posted as "preprints" but have now been vetted by scientific peer review and appear in a prestigious journal.

Sunday, July 24, 2022

China censors strive to filter or erase details of mortgage protests

July 21, 2022

  • Homebuyers balk at paying mortgages on unfinished housing
  • Censors scramble to erase or filter details of boycotts
  • Protests come at a sensitive time for Chinese leader

SHANGHAI/BEIJING, July 20 (Reuters) - As China grapples to contain a mortgage boycott that has triggered rare protests, censors have gone into overdrive with social media messages blocked, videos of demonstrations wiped and key word searches coming up blank.

Censors are scrambling to filter or erase details of angry homebuyers threatening to stop paying mortgages on hundreds of unfinished housing projects, as regulators seek to reassure residents that everything will be taken care of.

Tuesday, July 12, 2022

New SERS rehousing options for Ang Mo Kio flat owners will apply to similar projects in future: Desmond Lee

Blocks 562 to 565 in Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3 have been picked for the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (SERS).
(Photo: CNA/Cheryl Lin)

Tang See Kit
04 Jul 2022 

SINGAPORE: The new rehousing options made available to some flat owners in Ang Mo Kio as part of the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (SERS) will apply to a similar exercise in Marsiling and future acquisitions under the scheme, said National Development Minister Desmond Lee on Monday (Jul 4).

The Housing and Development Board (HDB) over the weekend announced that eligible home owners under SERS will be able to purchase a new replacement unit on a shorter 50-year lease, instead of a fresh 99-year one. A second option allows residents who are seniors to take up the lease buyback scheme for their existing flat and buy a new replacement flat of the same flat type on a short lease.

Friday, July 8, 2022

Commentary: Overturning of Roe v Wade abortion decision has upended the US midterm elections

With the US Supreme Court overturning the right to abortion, will Roe v Wade unify Democrats or rally Republicans in the November midterm elections? Yale-NUS College’s Trisha Craig says domestic politics could affect America’s role as global leader in uncertain times.
A celebration outside the Supreme Court, Friday, June 24, 2022, in Washington. after its decision
to overturn the court's landmark abortion cases. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Trisha Craig

08 Jul 2022

SINGAPORE: Abortion in the United States has been a highly partisan issue for decades. Politically, it is often summed up by where one stands on the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade decision that guaranteed a constitutional right to abortion.

So when the US Supreme Court – with a conservative majority of judges - overturned Roe v Wade on Jun 24 after a draft decision was leaked in May, it was expected but no less stunning.

Wednesday, July 6, 2022


Hungry? These 67 Singapore eateries just made the Michelin Bib Gourmand 2022 list

New entries this year, include Nan Xing Zhou Beef Noodle, Kelantan Kway Chap Pig Organ Soup and Lixin Teochew Fishball Noodles.

Genevieve Sarah Loh

05 Jul 2022

The 2022 edition of the Bib Gourmand selection for the Michelin Guide Singapore has bestowed honours on a total of 67 eateries, nine of which are new entries.

Ayam Sate Madura (Photo: Cumi Bali)

The Bib Gourmand category was created in 1997 to recognise establishments that offer diners a value-for-money gourmet experience in Singapore, with a complete and high-quality menu priced at a maximum of S$45. All eateries are nominated by Michelin guide inspectors.

Monday, July 4, 2022

New Public Defenders Office will provide legal aid to those with per capita household income up to S$1,500: MinLaw

Bill introduced to set up Public Defender's Office that provides legal aid for people charged with non-capital crimes
Public defenders under the new office need not be called to the bar, the Ministry of Law said.

  • A proposed public defender's office will provide criminal legal aid to Singaporeans with a per capita monthly houshold income of up to S$1,500
  • The Ministry of Law tabled a Public Defenders Bill on Monday (July 4) in Parliament 
  • The public defender's office will work together with the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme, which also provides legal aid to the needy
  • Public defenders in the new office need not be called to the Bar, but must have the necessary skills and education qualifications


July 4, 2022

Austere and ‘tight' approach to managing prison conditions has kept suicide, assault rates low: Shanmugam

Singapore’s prison capacity is currently at about 70 per cent, Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam said.

  • The "austere" regime and environment in Singapore's prisons were deliberately designed, Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam said
  • The Singapore Prison Service's "tight approach" has, among other things, kept suicides among prisoners low compared with other jurisdictions, he said
  • Mr Shanmugam was responding to increased interest in prison conditions following the airing of a CNA documentary 
  • Mr Shanmugam said that Singapore's approach in managing the prisons have also led to lower assault rates compared to some other jurisdictions, where gangs informally run the place
  • The minister also explained why certain race-based data relating to crime are not disclosed publicly, and how the Government arrives at this decision in consultation with various community groups


July 4, 2022

Saturday, July 2, 2022

The Big Read in short: Where did it all go wrong with the Sports Hub?

Illustration: Anam Musta'ein

In separate interviews with TODAY, former staff of Sports Hub Pte Ltd spoke about deep lying issues that plagued the project from the get-go. But everything boiled down to this: A disconnect between the interests of the Government and the private firms, and a partnership only in name that was pulled in multiple directions by a long list of stakeholders with different objectives.

Each week, TODAY’s long-running Big Read series delves into the trends and issues that matter. This week, we examine where it all went wrong with the running of the Singapore Sports Hub, which led to the termination of the public-private partnership. This is a shortened version of the full feature,​ which can be found here.

  • Sport Singapore (SportSG) announced on June 10 that it will be taking over full ownership of the Sports Hub from its private partner, Sports Hub Private Limited (SHPL)
  • Former staff of SHPL largely agree with this decision, saying that the partnership between the Government and private sector was flawed from the start 
  • Several of them say that the partnership was akin to a vendor-client relationship, and that the Government had given the private sector too much leeway to call the shots 
  • SHPL had also found it challenging to manage its various private partners, who were all jostling to make their own profits out of the venture 
  • Moving forward, the Government will have to strike a balance between maintaining the prestige of a world-class venue, and making the Sports Hub accessible to the community