Singapore, an island city-state off southern Malaysia, is a global financial center with a tropical climate and multicultural population. Its colonial core centers on the Padang, a cricket field since the 1830s and now flanked by grand buildings such as City Hall, with its 18 Corinthian columns. In Singapore’s circa-1820 Chinatown stands the red-and-gold Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, said to house one of Buddha’s teeth.
Singapore has a population of approximately 4.35 million people. More than 75% are Chinese with the remaining 25%, mainly Malays, Indians and others. The different races live together with mutual respect and in racial harmony. The work force is well educated and hardworking and there is a high level of managerial and technical expertise available.
The People’s Action Party, its single dominant ruling party since its independence in 1965, rules Singapore. There is no strong opposition party in Singapore. The Singapore Government vigilantly plans, manages and administers the country’s socio-economic development. Singapore is one of the world’s most politically stable and corruption-free countries.
Infrastructure and Economy
Singapore has an excellent infrastructure with state of the art communication facilities and road transport system. It operates busy and efficient air and seaports and is a free port with no customs and excise duties on most items. Singapore is also one of the leading international financial centers. Offshore investors are well served by representatives of most major international banks, financial institutions, investment management companies and accounting and legal firms. The Singapore Government actively woos foreign investments with generous tax and financial incentives. This has successfully attracted numerous regional holding companies, corporate headquarters, business and service centers, group finance and treasury centers as well as investments in high tech industries, media and communications, shipping and financial services.
The most commonly used official languages are English and to a lesser extent, Chinese, Malay and Tamil which are also official languages.
There are no foreign exchange controls in Singapore.