List of countries by foreign-exchange reserves
— SG's foreign reserves, no. 10 at US$256.86b as at 31 Dec 2014 MAS decided to reduce the slope of its band for the S$
— 30 Jan 2015Money printing - How much is too much?
— 11 Jan 2013CPF StatisticsTide of Liquidity
— 28 May 2013Sovereign wealth funds: The new intersection of money and politics
— 10 Feb 2012Government securities issuance limit raised
9 April 2012
SINGAPORE: Parliament has authorised the Ministry of Finance to borrow a further S$170 billion, through the issuance of government securities.
The increase raises the ceiling for issuing government securities to S$490 billion.
Minister of State for Finance Josephine Teo said 80 per cent of the increase will be issued to the Central Provident Fund to meet its investment needs.
The remaining 20 per cent will go to the Monetary Authority of Singapore, for the issuance of Singapore government securities in line with the growth of financial markets, and to enhance the efficiency and liquidity of Singapore debt markets.
Ms Teo reiterated that all proceeds from the issuance of securities are invested, not spent.
The last increase was approved by Parliament in 2009, when the limit was raised from S$250 billion to S$320 billion.
Mrs Teo said" "What has happened in that time was the increase in special government securities was faster than expected as the economy recovered very rapidly, and exceeding the expectations. As a result this initial borrowing limit, or issuance limit that we sought in 2009 is going to be reached much earlier than we expected. This is why we're coming to Parliament again to ask for the issuance limit to be raised."The global debt clock 2015: Singapore Vs Hong Kong
— 2 Feb 2015
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------An outsider’s view on what’s happening in Singapore
February 2nd, 2013
I am an “ex-Singaporean” living in Europe for the past 27 years. “Ex-Singaporean” meaning, I still hold a SG passport and come back every 5 years passing through (to other countries for holidays) to get my passport stamped or I’ll lose my citizenship.
I only found out about TRE in early 2012 while passing through SG (stayed 5 days before spending a month in Indonesia) and have since been following actively what’s going on.
I admit, I will probably never come back to SG as my life and work is in Europe. I have only $10,000 in my CPF and can never afford to buy anything in Singapore. Nonetheless, I still have my SG passport and may one day return home. Who knows… But please don’t “tekan” me because of that. I left after fulfilling my NS 2.5 years with no deferments. And I am proud to say that it was not doing some “scientific research” but in an active combat unit.
I would like to share my opinions of what’s happening in the country where I grew up till 1988 when I moved.CPF?
I think it is a big huge ponzi scheme. The monies there have been lost in bad investments through Temasek and GlCs. Which explains the reasons that you cannot practically take your money out when you retire.6.9m population?
Another ponzi scheme. Let’s face “human tendencies”. If I was a minister earning million dollar salary, I will propose what I think is right and good for the country (eg 6.9m population). People don’t like it? Fine. I take it the idea off, as my salary is not affected anyway till 2030… and let the people suffer for not taking my “advice”.
So why is the govt forcing down the throats of the poor sinkies that 6.9m is the way to go and risk losing a GE in 2016? The only reason I can come up with is this.
There is no more money in CPF due to bad investments. Assets in Temasek are only paper assets worth “billions”. No transparency in Temasek because the “billions” are not there as convertible into immediate cash if needed. The values of the investments are values they hope to get if they sell.
The way to cover up for the losses? Increase population size (or demographics ponzi) so the increased (FT) population can pay for the losses. I really do not see any other reasons why a govt in power would go against the wishes of the people. The secret of the investment losses is a secret to an inner circle who use the party whip to get PAP MPs to toe the line to vote YES.
And those elite PAP members, MPs, RC leaders and those riding on PAP backs members? They get perks and good salaries. Too crowded? They can afford holidays to less crowded places or invest in properties outside of SG where they can retire.I have 3 conclusions as possibilities :
Does SG need 6.9m?
- PAP is totally disconnected with the people.
- They are truly servants of the people and believe 6.9m is the way to go and would risk losing an election based on this belief.
- 6.9m is self interest to cover investment losses and taking a bet that people will not vote opposition.
No. SG was doing ok but with crisis when I left in 1988 with 2.5m. Things got better in the 90s with some FTs. I regretted leaving back then. Now I don’t. 5.5m on an island? So expensive. CPF locked up. No way! Govt got greedy and wrongly invested which resulted in needing more FTs to cover for losses and million dollar salaries.
True, as many have pointed out in TRE. SG got addicted to the cheap labour. Low costs with no increase in productivity – which a developed nation should NOT be doing. There is a 1st world salary for the lucky few, 1st world infrastructure for the people (what used to be… until the MRT started breaking down and high property prices) but no 1st world salary for the majority of the people. Basically it is a 3rd world salary scale (for the majority) with a 1st world infrastructure. So to continue this growth, SG “needs” cheap 3rd world salaried workers like the FTs coming in.SG highest number of millionaires per capita?
I used to boast about this to my European friends until I started reading TRE. I brought my girlfriend to SG and she was amazed at the number of Ferraris! She said it is like Monaco! She had never seen so may Ferarris in Paris – about 10 million population (she is French).
The gap between the “have it” and “have nots” are too wide and does not represent a 1st world country or economy. Look at India, China, Brazil, Argentina, etc. There are billionaires! And the “have nots’? 99%! Now I tell my friends – SG is 3rd world.
Vote PAP out and Opposition have majority and form new (coalition???) govt?
Likely not happen. Hate to say it, if in GE 2016 PAP is voted out…. will be a disaster for SG. Opposition too splintered. Talented opposition leaders too spread out.
I think WP is doing it right. They know they cannot replace PAP – Yet. Better to be a co-driver to check on PAP than to fight them by marketing themselves as the “next govt” as they do not have a full team that can replace all the PAP ministers.
Ideally it would be great to have 1 single strong opposition that can form a shadow govt with a shadow PM, shadow Minister of defence, etc. But there is no shadow govt. So far, SDP has got a great shadow MND (Dr Chee). RP has a good shadow Finance Minister – KJ. NSP has got a potential Minster in Youth and community – Nicole Seah, WP has got a potential law minister Sylvia Lim, Muhamad Faisal – Minister for Muslim Affairs, Chen Show Mao for Trade and industries, LTK as DPM (let’s be honest… take on LHL… will be tough) and so on.
But they are all scattered opposition parties. If everyone could get together to form 1 single opposition party. Of course, that is wishful thinking as SG embarks on its democratic course. However… if…
All the opposition parties were to form a coalition opposition/shadow govt naming all the shadow ministers with their policies… that would be something! Then we will be offering the people an alternate choice of a govt if the coalition was voted in. Is this a dream? Maybe…
If GE is now. Who would you vote? A party with people already in place as ministers and a cabinet or a splintered opposition with no alternatives?
I believe that as long as an opposition shadow cabinet is not in place, people cannot choose. With a shadow cabinet in set up, when GE2016 happens, people will be vetting opposition candidates on ministerial possibilities rather than voting opposition for the sake of opposing. Let’s be honest, MPs do not make policies. They are Yes man (PAP) or avoid fights they cannot win (WP). Ministers make policies that shape a county.
Face facts. In a freak election that people voted opposition parties in protest of PAP and a coalition of opposition parties forms the next govt in 2016. Can you find 11 minister calibre people in the opposition – assuming they all agree to form a new govt? I think it is most likely WP will be the main opposition party that will prefer to form a coalition govt with 1 single PAP than with 5 opposition parties.Unless the opposition can sit down together and create a shadow govt and a shadow cabinet, 1 of 3 things will happen in 2016 :
6.9 million figure is the worst case scenario?
- Live with the devil you know = PAP
- Freak election, PAP voted out and splinter oppositon form coalition with unknown and untested candidates as minsisters to fill the space.
- WP forms coalition with PAP and shares power (closer to democracy).
- Khaw: 6.9 million figure is the worst case scenario.
- “We hope we do not reach that figure; we may never reach that figure. But as planners, we have to ensure that the infrastructure could accommodate such a figure, if need be. Our hope is that the actual figure would turn out to be much lower.”
My take? Bullshit! They (the govt) are going to build for 6.9m anyway. When the time comes… they say we have everything in place for 6.9m anyway, so why not use it?
And the magic 6.9m figure? Sounds very marketing to me. $1.90 sounds better than $2.00 when I am trying to sell something to someone. 6.9m sounds better than 7m.
Whenever I see the $1.90 or $9.99 item on sale… I get wary. It means it is not worth that. So, 6.9m looks more like above 7m to me.
But hey, I am not living in SG now. I can only feel the pain of my fellow Singaporeans dealing with this. I still remember my kampong and the first MRT ride I took before I left. How proud I was when I showed my friends with me while they were visiting SG.
Now, my foreign friends see Ferraris and old people collecting bottles, cardboards, selling tissue paper at hawker centres. They associate rude bus drivers and people not speaking English (or Singlish) to Singapore.
Good luck in finding your balance. As Vivian Balakrishnan say – ‘we are facing the crisis of our lifetime’. No punt or offence intended. He is talking about a different crisis. You, my fellow SGs, are facing the real crisis. This shows the disconnect of PAP and the people.