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     Business - News

     News Snippets

     2007

 

Inaugural Singapore Business Events Awards

"The inaugural Awards ceremony will be held some time in early August 2007 and thereafter, it will be held annually...

"The Awards will recognise industry players that are innovative in organising business events and whose expertise and service levels meet global standards..."

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Retrenchment and Re-employment in 2006

"Specifically, the re-employment rate of residents retrenched from PMET jobs rose from an average of 65% in 2005 to a post-Asian crisis high of 73% in 2006.

"This exceeds the rate for the other two occupational groups, unlike in past years when clerical, sales & service workers were the most re-employable...

"In 2006, private sector establishments each with at least 25 employees retrenched 12,359 workers..."

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Experience lifestyle yachting with an Azurea membership

Kingfisher Marine announces the launch of Azurea, an new membership scheme that provides easy and affordable access to the exclusive world of lifestyle yachting...

Azurea is specifically designed for the busy professional who wants to simply climb on board with his family or friends and go boating!
The scheme removes all of the uncertainties associated with chartering and relieves members of all the responsibilities and expense normally associated with ownership.

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UBS opens Wealth Management Campus in Singapore

“ 'The Campus will be a centre of excellence for development programmes targeted at employees and clients in the Asia Pacific region. More importantly, it will also serve as a hothouse for wealth management research and thought leadership in new wealth management initiatives,' said Kathryn SHIH, Head of UBS Wealth Management in Asia Pacific...

"Equipped with state-of-the art facilities, including a lecture hall with video conference facilities and voice activated cameras, five seminar rooms, a media lab for business technology training, networking and administrative areas, UBS expects to train approximately 5,000 existing and future UBS Wealth Management staff by 2010..."

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Impact of the two Integrated Resorts in 2010

"Together with the two IRs, these will help us achieve our target to attract 17 million visitors and generate S$30 billion in tourism receipts by the year 2015...

"In terms of manpower, the two IRs combined are expected to create some 50,000 to 60,000 additional jobs throughout the economy when both are fully operational..."

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Police bust unlicensed moneylending syndicate

"Seventeen Chinese men aged between 17 to 38 years old believed to be members of an unlicensed moneylending (UML) syndicate were arrested in an island-wide operation conducted on 12 April 07. More than $130,000 in cash was seized...
"Fifteen premises in Woodlands, Sengkang, Ang Mo Kio, Toa Payoh, Hougang, Yishun, Sembawang, Serangoon and Changi were raided during the operation, which lasted from 8pm on 12 April 07 to 1am on 13 April 07..."

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Spam Control Bill 2007 passed

"Part I of the Bill defines spam. A message is “spam” when it is an unsolicited commercial electronic message sent more than 100 times, with the same or similar subject-matter, during a 24-hour period, or more than 1,000 times during a 30-day period, or more than 10,000 times during a one-year period...

"An opt-out approach is adopted under the Bill as it balances the need of companies and marketers to send unsolicited messages for business reasons...

"In order to balance between consumer interests and industry needs the Bill will require that each message contains a valid unsubscribe facility, an ‘<ADV>’ label to mark it out as an advertisement, accurate header information or subject titles and functional contact details of the sender...

"The unsubscribe process has been structured to be consumer-friendly so that even individuals who receive small volumes of spam have a means of recourse, without resorting to legal action. The Bill makes it mandatory for senders to allow recipients to unsubscribe via the same medium through which the spam was received. This ensures that unsubscribing from spam can be done easily and conveniently by replying to an email or SMS..."

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Pay rise for ministers and civil servants

"The resignation rate of the Management Executive Scheme (which employs graduate officers across the ministries) was 10.6%, up from 7.4% in 2005. At some of our entry grades, the situation is quite serious, with resignation rates as high as 25%.
"Members of the House would also have read from the newspapers[4] that for our Home Team, there has been a 40% increase in the resignation of junior officers in January and February this year, compared to the same period last year.
"We need to act before the situation becomes more serious. The Government, as an employer, has to respond quickly and decisively to stay competitive and close the wage gaps. Otherwise, we will deplete the Service of the able people we need, and the service level to the public will be affected..."

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Paying our public servants competitive salaries

"We know from head-hunters that the entire top managements of some of our agencies are being targeted. The Middle Eastern countries are particularly interested. They have studied Singapore’s success story. They want to tap our people to join them and replicate the miracle, and money is no object...
"This is an urgent problem. We have experienced on previous occasions the painful consequences of responding too slowly when the private sector surged ahead.
"For example in the early 1990s, the Administrative Service lost entire cohorts of good officers. This showed up in the age profile of the Service – broad at the young and older age groups, but narrow at the mid- to late-30s range. We took many years to recover from the loss. This must not happen again..."

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Inaugural Singapore National Barista Championship 2007

Mr Ross Bright Master Coffee Roaster & Wholesale Manager with the Spinelli Coffee Company

29 – 31 March 2007

More.....

     - Bank Julius Baer opens wholesale bank branch in Singapore

 

Singapore Labour Market 2006

"Total employment creation for the whole of 2006 rose to an all-time high of 176,000, surpassing the previous year’s gains of 113,300. This brought the total number employed to 2,495,900 persons as at December 06...
"On average, 67,500 residents were unemployed in 2006, down from 74,900 in 2005 and the high of 91,200 in 2003..."

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$5.2 billion Resorts World at Sentosa slated to open in early 2010

"Resorts World at Sentosa will welcome some 10 million tourists, excluding local visitors, by 2015, generating S$15 billion in tourism receipts, half of Singapore’s target.
"Spending per diem on entertainment and sightseeing is expected to be more than six times higher than current spending levels...
"In anticipation of the increase in tourist traffic to Sentosa Island, Resorts World at Sentosa is also committed to significantly enhance the existing infrastructure of the island by building a new three-lane bridge, adjacent to the existing Sentosa Gateway Bridge...

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StarHub launches online storage solution for companies

"Targeted at companies and individuals that need to manage numerous large documents and files on a daily basis, StarHub’s OSB lets customers store and back up files safely, send and share information effortlessly and allow multiple users to access documents from their notebook or PC on-the-go, be it text, graphics, presentations, video, voice or any other digital media...
"Price packages for OSB starts as low as S$60 per month for 10GB storage space and five User IDs, and can scale to as high as 2TB (i.e. 2000GB) and up to 1000 User IDs..."

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     - Media statement on Genting and the Sentosa Integrated Resort

 

Singapore may enter upper half of First World nations within 20 years

"The Singapore of the 1980s is the past.
"By 2010 we will have two integrated resorts. With conventions and world class entertainment, our tourists may increase from 9.7 million in 2006 to 17 million by 2015.

"Singapore’s landscape will change. We will have an iconic city centre, a Marina with a promenade that will allow pedestrians and electric golf buggies unimpeded access round the whole Marina, with al fresco dining, restaurants, shops and electrically-driven pleasure boats for tourists to cruise along the Singapore and Kallang Rivers..."

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Islamic finance in Singapore

Mr Ng Nam Sin, Executive Director, Monetary Authority of Singapore

"We have reviewed our policies to ensure that Islamic finance is not disadvantaged vis-à-vis conventional finance...
"Regulatory wise, we have worked proactively with Financial Institutions in allowing Islamic Finance transaction under existing regulation...
"All these put together, along with Singapore's open markets, efficient infrastructure and transparent regulations allow Singapore to further develop itself as an international financial centre offering Islamic Finance possibilities..."

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A Statistical Profile of Older Workers

"Older persons aged 50 & over made up close to one-quarter (24%) of the resident workforce in 2006.
"Reflecting their relatively less educated profile, the majority (68%) of older workers were employed in lower-skilled jobs such as cleaners, labourers & related workers (18%), plant & machine operators & assemblers (16%) and service & sales workers (15%).
"These occupations also registered an above-average incidence of older workers especially for cleaners, labourers & related workers where more than half (53%) were aged 50 & over...."

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Check your eligibility for Singapore PR or citizenship online

"The Naturalisation Eligibility Tool is a free online self-assessment system, to assist foreigners working and staying in Singapore to assess if they are eligible for either Singapore Permanent Residence (SPR) or Singapore Citizenship (SC)...
"Overseas foreigners are also able to use the system although theirs will only be a hypothetical assessment. These overseas foreigners are given the option to provide their contact particulars to enable ICA to contact them if necessary..."

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     - 1,100 theft cases involving metals in 2006

 

Alcoholic beverages consumption in foreign workers' dormitories

"In a pilot test, Police has allowed beer to be sold in four dormitories1, and where the beer is then consumed at designated social areas inside the dormitories...
"Police is now conducting a review to assess if the sale and consumption of beer can be extended to other dormitories..."

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Budget Statement 2007

"I will give lower-income Singaporeans larger GST Credits.
"Those who live in one- to three-room flats[4] and have annual assessable incomes of $24,000 or less will qualify for the largest quantum of $1,000, to be paid out in instalments of $250 per year over four years...
"Next, if you live in a larger home with an AV of more than $10,000, but you earn less than $100,000 a year, you will get $400 in GST Credits.
"The top income group comprising those earning over $100,000 a year will get $100. It is a small gesture, but recognises that the GST increase affects everyone.
"NSmen and NSFs, including those aged below 21, will also get an additional $100 of GST Credits, to recognise their contributions to national security...

"The first instalment will be paid out on 1 July this year, at the same time as the GST increase..."

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     -  Health Products Bill passed

     - Police raid second company using pirated software

     - Singapore's first underground rock cavern for hydrocarbon storage

 

Singapore's postal sector to be fully liberalised from 1 April 2007

"To ensure that our security concerns of mail integrity and accountability are met, SingPost will continue to hold the full set of letterbox masterdoor keys...
"As national stamps carry the country's name and to prevent consumer confusion over which PPL the national stamp belongs to, SingPost will continue to be the only one to issue these stamps...
"For greater operational efficiency, Singapore will keep a centralised postal code management system. SingPost will continue to manage this centralised system, while providing access to the postal codes database to all interested PSOs..."

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     - MOT comments on Malaysia's plan to temporarily close causeway to heavy vehicles

 

Income Tax (Amendment) Bill passed

"Currently, the penalty for not filing an income tax return is significantly less severe than the penalty for under-declaring income. This creates an incentive for taxpayers to avoid taxation by not submitting their income tax returns.
"To discourage this practice, a penalty of double the amount of tax undercharged will be introduced for the failure to file a tax return in respect of any year of assessment within 3 years from the filing deadline..."

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Report on labour force in Singapore in 2006

"76% of the resident population aged 25 to 64 were employed, the highest since the data was first compiled in 1991, up from 73% in 1996...
"12% or 172,000 of resident employees were engaged on term contracts in June 2006 while the remaining 88% were permanent employees3. On average, employees on term contract drew lower pay than those on permanent appointments...
"The share of degree holders almost doubled to 23% from 12% a decade ago..."

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Proposed changes to rules for unsecured credit

"A measured step of lowering the minimum annual income threshold for unsecured credit facilities from $30,000 to $20,000. A more conservative maximum credit limit of twice the borrower's monthly income will be set for individuals in this $20,000 to $30,000 income group, with no access to credit cards...
"Create appropriate modifications to the moneylenders regime.  For instance, for unsecured loans of $3,000 and below, no minimum income requirement would be imposed but such loans would be subject to an interest rate cap..."

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Employment situation in 4th quarter 2006

"Preliminary estimates show that total employment grew by 48,800 in the fourth quarter of 2006, considerably higher than the gains of 35,300 in the same period a year ago, and up from 43,000 in the third quarter of 2006...
"Total retrenchment for the whole of 2006 was 12,200. Although this is higher than 10,294 in 2005, it is only about half the number retrenched in 2001 (25,838). Manufacturing formed the bulk of retrenchments (8,800), followed by services (3,000) and construction (400) in 2006..."

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About 200,000 new Singapore PRs in the next 5 years

"From 2001-2004, an average of 35,250 new permanent residents (PR) and 7,130 new Singapore citizens (SC) were granted per annum. In 2005, about 52,300 new PRs and 12,900 new SCs were granted.
"The average numbers of new PRs and SCs are 38,700 and 8,300 respectively, for the period 2001-2005.
"We could expect to add about 200,000 new PRs and 40,000 new SCs in the next 5 years if we get the same numbers of new PRs and SCs as in the last 5 years..."

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Secondhand Goods Dealers Bill 2007 passed

"The current Act does not cover dealers operating without a shop. We recognise that many secondhand goods dealers today actually carry on their business via other means, such as on the Internet, or in an open-air setting like Sungei Road. This is unacceptable, as thieves and robbers will simply get rid of their loot through these other dealers who do not have a shop-front...
"MHA is hence widening the coverage of the law to include those dealers who do not operate within a shop. However, in keeping with the emphasis on a sharper regulatory focus, only dealers who trade in secondhand goods that are listed in the Schedule will come under the ambit of the Act..."

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     -  Crazy Horse Paris in Singapore to close

     - PTC revises premium bus service scheme

 

The Banking (Amendment) Bill passed

"Entities that have not been approved to issue credit cards in Singapore will be prohibited from soliciting for or accepting card applications in Singapore, and this applies equally to third parties acting on their behalf...
"The proposed regime also clarifies that single party merchant credit is exempted from regulation.  Such an arrangement, where the card is used only for transactions with the issuer, is essentially a deferred payment scheme offered by merchants to their customers.
"In addition, a new exemption for cards granting credit in small amounts not exceeding S$500 will be introduced.  This allows flexibility in payments for small-ticket items without raising substantial concerns about Singaporeans spending beyond their means..."

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     - StarHub first to launch HDTV service in Singapore

     - Singapore launches Infocomm Enterprise Programme

     - MDA launches new licence framework for IPTV

     - The new NKF’S progress report 2006

     - Singapore Airlines to review creative agency

 

SMU starts School of Law

"The Third Committee on the Supply of Lawyers estimated that an additional 140-150 legal professionals will be required each year from 2010 until 2015 to meet the needs of Singapore’s legal industry.

"To meet this number, the SMU School of Law will take in 90 students in AY2007, reaching a steady-state intake of 120 from AY2008 onwards.
"The NUS Faculty of Law will also increase its intake from the current 220 to 240 beginning in AY2007..."

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Advance GDP estimates for 4th quarter 2006

3Q06

4Q06*

2006

Overall GDP

7.0

5.9

7.7

Goods Producing Industries

Manufacturing

9.5

7.3

11.4

Construction

2.6

2.4

1.1

Services Producing Industries

6.6

6.0

6.9

* Advance Estimates

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Singapore economy expected to grow by 4-6% in 2007

"In the last five years, our real per-capita GDP grew on average by 4.3% per annum, but real average wages (after adjusting for inflation) grew at only half this rate – 2.1%.

"Higher-end wages have risen by more than this. But at the lower-end wages have increased by much less, and some have even stagnated.
"This is why we are implementing Workfare as a fourth pillar of our social safety net, together with the CPF, the 3Ms (Medisave, MediShield and Medifund) and HDB home ownership..."

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Public transport operators to handle lost & found properties

"With effect from 1 January 2007, the public bus and taxi companies, namely, SBS Transit Ltd, SMRT Buses Ltd, Comfort Transportation Pte Ltd, Yellow-Top Cab Pte Ltd, CityCab Pte Ltd, SMRT Taxis Pte Ltd, Trans-Cab Services Pte Ltd, Smart Automobile Pte Ltd and Premier Taxis Pte Ltd, will handle all properties found in their vehicles and handle all reports on lost and found properties made by their customers and drivers..."

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     - Changes to CPF Minimum Sum and Investment schemes from 1 Jan 2007

     2006

     2005

     2001 - 2004

This section commenced on 22 Aug 2001