Portal:Singapore

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Singapore ( /ˈsɪŋ(ɡ)əpɔːr/ ( About this sound listen)), officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign island city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude (137 kilometres or 85 miles) north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bordering the Straits of Malacca to the west, the Riau Islands (Indonesia) to the south, and the South China Sea to the east. The country's territory is composed of one main island, 63 satellite islands and islets, and one outlying islet, the combined area of which has increased by 25% since the country's independence as a result of extensive land reclamation projects. It has the second greatest population density in the world. With a multicultural population and recognizing the need to respect cultural identities, Singapore has four official languages: English, Malay, Mandarin Chinese and Tamil. English is the lingua franca. Multiracialism is enshrined in the constitution, and continues to shape national policies in education, housing, and politics.

Modern Singapore was founded in 1819 by Sir Stamford Raffles as a trading post of the British Empire. In 1867, the colonies in Southeast Asia were reorganised and Singapore came under the direct control of Britain as part of the Straits Settlements. During the Second World War, Singapore was occupied by Japan in 1942, but returned to British control as a separate crown colony following Japan's surrender in 1945. Singapore gained self-governance in 1959, and in 1963 became part of the new federation of Malaysia, alongside Malaya, North Borneo, and Sarawak. Ideological differences led to Singapore being expelled from the federation two years later, becoming an independent country.

After early years of turbulence and despite lacking natural resources and a hinterland, the nation rapidly developed to become one of the Four Asian Tigers based on external trade, becoming a highly developed country; it is ranked ninth on the UN Human Development Index, and has the second-highest GDP per capita (PPP) in the world. Singapore is the only country in Asia with a AAA sovereign rating from all major rating agencies. It is a major financial and shipping hub, consistently ranked the most expensive city to live in since 2013, and has been identified as a tax haven. Singapore is placed highly in key social indicators: education, healthcare, quality of life, personal safety and housing, with a home-ownership rate of 91%. Singaporeans enjoy one of the world's longest life expectancies, fastest Internet connection speeds and one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world.

Singapore is a unitary parliamentary republic with a Westminster system of unicameral parliamentary government. While elections are considered generally free, the government exercises significant control over politics and society, and the People's Action Party has ruled continuously since independence. One of the five founding members of ASEAN, Singapore is also the headquarters of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Secretariat and Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC) Secretariat, as well as many international conferences and events. Singapore is also a member of the United Nations, World Trade Organization, East Asia Summit, Non-Aligned Movement and the Commonwealth of Nations. ( Full article...)

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Speakers Corner 1.jpg
Speakers' Corner is an area located within Hong Lim Park, Singapore, where citizens and permanent residents of Singapore may demonstrate, hold exhibitions and performances, and speak freely on most topics after prior registration on a government website. Such activities are heavily restricted in other parts of Singapore. ( Full article...)
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Doorknob of the Siong Lim Temple
Credit: AngMoKio (28 October 2008)

The doorknob of the Siong Lim Temple ( Chinese: (莲山)双林寺; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Liân-san-siang-lîm-sī) in Toa Payoh, Singapore. Note that it is shaped as a Chinese dragon. Read more...

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Edwin Nadason Thumboo B.B.M. (born 22 November 1933) is a Singaporean poet and academic who is regarded as one of the pioneers of English literature in Singapore.

Thumboo graduated in English from the University of Malaya in 1956. Although he applied for a position at the university, he was rejected as few locals held academic posts at that time. He therefore worked in the civil service for about nine years before finally joining the university, then renamed the University of Singapore, in 1966 following Singapore's independence. He received a Ph.D. from the university in 1970. Thumboo rose to the position of full professor in the Department of English Language and Literature, heading the department between 1977 and 1993. After the merger of the University of Singapore and Nanyang University in 1980 to form the National University of Singapore (NUS), he was the Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences from 1980 to 1991, NUS's longest-serving dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Thumboo was the first Chairman and Director of the university's Centre for the Arts from 1993 to 2005, and continues to be associated with the university as an emeritus professor, a position he has held since retiring from full-time teaching in September 1997. ( Full article...)

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Photo of the Concourse
  • ... that to prepare for future examinations, Singapore students use the ten year series to practice on past years' examination papers, some of which date back to before they were born?

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Clarke Quay
Credit: Sengkang (20 February 2006)

Clarke Quay is a historical riverside quay in Singapore that is situated upstream from the mouth of the Singapore River and Boat Quay. In this picture, Clarke Quay is pictured on the left bank while the Riverside Point is on the right bank. The bridge on the right of the picture is the Ord Bridge.

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