Singapore morning news for January 17

Singapore morning news for January 17

Singapore morning news

Google in talks for 400,000 sq ft space at Alexandra Technopark
GOOGLE is planning to expand in Singapore, going by market talk that it plans to boost its real estate footprint on the island.
— The Business Times

Uncertainty weighs on Singapore firms with UK ops, businesses fret over chance of a hard Brexit
British Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit plans may be in tatters, but Singapore-based Concorde Security is moving ahead with its expansion plans in the United Kingdom.
— Straits Times

Explainer: New laws to pave the way for creation of Singapore Food Agency
The upcoming Singapore Food Agency (SFA) will work to oversee food safety and security.
— Today Singapore

Forced labor on foreign domestic helpers in Singapore rampant, says NGO
A report entitled Behind Closed Doors: Forced Labor in the Domestic Work Sector in Singapore releases its conclusion saying that foreign domestic helpers in Singapore are at risk to becoming victims of forced labor. According to the Humanitarian Organization for Migration Economics (HOME), between April 2017 and March last year, 872 workers complained of work-related […]
— The Independent

Momentum of Malaysia’s relationship with Singapore ‘very positive’: Economic Minister Azmin Ali
The momentum of Malaysia’s relationship with Singapore is very positive, said Malaysian Minister for Economic Affairs Mohamed Azmin Ali on Wednesday (Jan 16), after meeting Singapore ministers to discuss bilateral issues over the weekend.
— Channel NewsAsia (very annoying poppups)

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Singapore qualified to mark its own exams
Barely a year after A-level scripts were stolen in Britain, O-level scripts have gone missing (32 O-level Additional Maths scripts lost in Britain; Jan 15).
— The Straits Times

Higher share of workers in firms offering flexi-work
The share of workers here whose companies provide formal flexible work arrangements continues to grow, and employers are offering more types of such perks.
— Straits Times

Switching up pace to narrow Singapore boards’ gender divide
SINGAPORE’s top 100 listed companies appear to be steadily weaning themselves from the ‘all-boys club’ in the boardrooms. In 2013, half of them had zero women while as at end-2018, just-men boards shrank to 25 per cent.
— The Business Times

Rare Singapore Hotel Site Gets Record $415 Million Bid
A rare plot of land that’s zoned for a hotel near Singapore’s central business district has attracted a record bid as developers shift focus after last year’s property cooling measures.
— Bloomberg

MCCY admits Founders Memorial will commemorate Lee Kuan Yew despite his aversion to monuments
The Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY) has admitted that the Founders’ Memorial it is building will commemorate founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew and his values and ideals. Plans to commemorate the late elder statesman through a memorial are moving forward in spite of his aversion to monuments.
— The Independent

Southeast Asian nations top global rankings for investment, business
SOUTHEAST Asian nations have dominated a list of best places in the world to invest in or do business for 2018, highlighting the attractiveness of the growing economies in the region amid a bleak outlook for 2019.
Asian Correspondent

KPMG calls for Smart Nation measures
BUDGET 2019 should help Singapore realise its Smart Nation vision, said KPMG on Wednesday, recommending moves in financial services, real estate, healthcare and life sciences, consumer retail and technology, as well as cybersecurity.
— The Business Times

Singapore is right to question university rankings fixation. Research has a social value, too
As any first year Philosophy undergraduate can tell you, discussion and debate have been the beating heart of university life ever since Plato’s Academy.
— South China Morning Post

MOM declines to publish the names of errant companies that discriminate against hiring Singaporeans
Minister of State for Manpower, Zaqy Mohamad, revealed in Parliament yesterday that a total of 521 errant companies that engaged in unfair employment practices were warned or sanctioned by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) between 2013 and 2017.
— The Independent

Ex-religious teacher and student issued restriction orders under Internal Security Act: MHA
Two Singaporeans – a former religious teacher and one of his students – have been issued restriction orders under the Internal Security Act (ISA), the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) announced on Wednesday (Jan 16).
— Channel NewsAsia (very annoying poppups)

Good progress on trade deal with EAEU: Tharman
Singapore, Russia and their partners in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) are making good progress on concluding the EAEU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (FTA) by the middle of the year, Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said on Tuesday.
— Straits Times

Muis should be praised for revoking accreditation of ex-religious teacher: Shanmugam
Home Affairs and Law Minister K Shanmugam said that the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) should be commended for revoking a religious teacher’s accreditation after it learnt about his misguided teachings.
— Today Singapore

How does Singapore deal with the danger of drones in no-fly zones? | Video
Eight unauthorised drones were reported flying within 5km of Changi Airport in the past three years. What measures are in place to counter these errant drones?
— Channel NewsAsia (very annoying popups)

Centre to boost infectious disease management
A state-of-the-art national centre for managing infectious diseases is set to be fully operational by May.
— Straits Times

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Hardened drug addicts to get longer rehab
Hardened drug addicts will soon undergo longer and more intensive rehabilitation programmes at the Drug Rehabilitation Centre (DRC), following amendments to the law that open the way for them to undergo repeated rehabilitation rather than serve prison time.
— Straits Times

Sino Grandness says served with $28.7 mil letter of demand by lender
Sino Grandness Food Industry Group, the producer and distributor of branded juices and canned fruits and vegetables, has revealed that it was served with a letter of demand on Jan 8 totalling $28.73 million.
— The Edge

From fighting diabetes to food waste, start-ups cook up new ideas for food
Affecting more than 420 million people globally, diabetes has been described as one of the world’s fastest growing chronic diseases and for Alan Phua, it is one that he lost both his grandmothers to.
— Channel NewsAsia (very annoying poppups)

KPMG’s Budget proposal: fintech adoption, cyber resilience and R&D
INVESTMENTS to drive fintech adoption, tax policies to increase cyber resilience and the adoption of new technologies, and enhance R&D (research and development) are among KPMG’s suggestions for Singapore Budget 2019.
— The Business Times

IMDA exploring tech to block automated scam calls, messages
The Info-communications Media Development Authority (IMDA) is looking into blocking automated scam calls and text messages promoting illegal activities.
— Channel NewsAsia

Insurers tap startup platforms to open new distribution channels
LURED by the promise of a large user base and a well of data to tap, insurance companies are tying up with non-insurtech digital platforms to open up a new distribution channel for their products.
— The Business Times

Grab launches free medical leave insurance for drivers
Ride-hailing platform Grab yesterday launched a free medical leave insurance scheme for drivers – but they must hit a minimum level of earnings.
— Straits Times

Singaporeans cancel CNY shopping trips to Malaysia as disputes drag on
Singaporean-organised “shopping tours” into Johor ahead of the Chinese New Year are seeing last-minute cancellations as relations between the two countries tense up over a maritime and airspace dispute, reported Sin Chew daily.
— Today Singapore

Singapore’s Grab can’t afford to fail finance
After sending rival Uber Technologies Inc packing from Singapore and other Southeast Asian markets, homegrown ride-hailing firm Grab has set itself a stiffer target. It wants to be a regional super-app.
— The Edge

Board diversity council expands scope to include female representation in organisations
The Diversity Action Committee (DAC) will widen its scope from January, from increasing representation of women on boards of Singapore Exchange (SGX)-listed companies to include organisations in the people and public sectors.
— Channel News Asia (very annoying poppups)

How can parents save in face of rising education costs in Singapore?
by ValueChampion The cost of educating a child in Singapore has increased steadily in recent decades. How can you reduce the financial burden of sending your children to school without sacrificing the quality of their education? The rising cost of education is becoming increasingly problematic for families in Singapore that simply want their children to have …
— The Online Citizen

The Disappearance of Singapore’s World-Famous Street Food
Hordes of office workers stream out of air-conditioned glass buildings in the heart of Singapore’s Central Business District toward Amoy Street Hawker Centre.
— Atlas Obscura

84.8 per cent of students scored at least five passes at the GCE O-Level examinations 2018
Students who sat for the 2018 Singapore-Cambridge General Certificate of Education Ordinary Level (GCE O-Level) Examination have collected their results from their secondary schools on Monday (14 January), in a record-breaking result as 84.8 per cent of students scored at least five passes at the GCE O-Level examinations last year. The Ministry of Education (MOE) and …
— The Online Citizen

Transport workers’ union calls for more full-day bus lanes, bus shelter extensions
The National Transport Workers’ Union (NTWU) on Wednesday (Jan 16) announced its recommendations to the Land Transport Master Plan 2040, providing its input on the shape of the future of Singapore’s land transport system.
— Channel News Asia (very annoying poppups)

Experts laud shift but worry about potential loopholes in amended Misuse of Drugs Act
The amended Misuse of Drugs Act that Parliament passed on Tuesday has been applauded by rehabilitation experts for its shift towards rehabilitation of drug addicts, though some wondered if there were loopholes that could increase the chances of a relapse.
— Straits Times

S’porean says he was told to lie about money trail in Russian doping scandal
A Singaporean businessman has told a court here that he was told to lie, to hide a money trail linked to one of the biggest athletics doping cover-up involving one of Russia’s biggest stars.
— Straits Times

Sea piracy and robbery fell to 12-year low in 2018
There were 76 cases of piracy and armed robbery incidents on the seas around the region last year, down from 101 in 2017 and the lowest number since the Singapore-based Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP) began tracking such figures in 2007.
— Today Singapore

Illuminate your senses at Light to Night Festival
Viewers enjoying a light show projected on the facade of the National Gallery Singapore at a media preview last night of the Light to Night Festival, which returns for a bumper edition until Feb 24.
— Straits Times

TCM physician suspended for abetting illegal massage joint
A traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) physician has been suspended from practice for three years for abetting the operation of an illegal massage parlour in MacPherson called Gold Finger Wellness & Health Centre. Sein Mok Sin, 68, was suspended by the TCM Practitioners Board last month, it said in a statement on Monday.
— Straits Times

Institutional Investors Have Been Selling These 3 Singapore Companies Last Week
These latest institutional buying activities might be a source of inspiration for investors when it comes to their own portfolio
— The Motley Fool

Dating agency aims to match single S’porean guys with Japanese women
Please form an orderly queue, guys.
— Mothership

Percussion instruments will be allowed to be played in Thaipusam for first time since 1973
The Singapore Police Force said in a statement to media on Wednesday evening that devotees who are participating in the Thaipusam procession this year, will be allowed to play percussion instruments. This is the first time since 1973 that percussion instruments are allowed. This year’s procession will start from this Sunday till Monday. Under the new provisions, …
— The Online Citizen

Read the fine print, says CASE, after online shoppers auto-enrolled in membership scheme
The Consumer Association of Singapore (CASE) on Wednesday (Jan 16) issued a consumer advisory reminding shoppers to read the fine print when making purchases online, after complaints about e-commerce retailer Fashion Interactive.
— Channel News Asia (very annoying poppups)

Give more tax incentives to employers who take on workers with disabilities–ESM Goh
On January 15, Tuesday, at the launch of a new program that would recognize what people with special needs have accomplished, Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong suggested that the Government can offer more tax incentives in order to encourage employers to hire those with disabilities. ESM Goh said that those who employed workers with disabilities.
— The Independent sg

Fewer mynahs roosting in Potong Pasir
Potong Pasir residents who have had their sleep disrupted by the cacophony of mynahs squawking can rest more soundly now.
— Straits Times


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Singapore morning news by AEC News Today is your one stop source for Singapore news on matters of governance and policies affecting Asean business communities. It is published M-F by AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.






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John Le Fevre

Thailand editor at AEC News Today

John is an Australian national with more than 40 years experience as a journalist, photographer, videographer, and copy editor.

He has spent extensive periods of time working in Africa and throughout Southeast Asia, with stints in the Middle East, the USA, and England.

He has covered major world events including Operation Desert Shield/ Storm, the 1991 pillage in Zaire, the 1994 Rwanda genocide, the 1999 East Timor independence unrest, the 2004 Asian tsunami, and the 2009, 2010, and 2014 Bangkok political protests.

In 1995 he was a Walkley Award finalist, the highest awards in Australian journalism, for his coverage of the 1995 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) Ebola outbreak.

Prior to AEC News Today he was the deputy editor and Thailand and Greater Mekong Sub-region editor for The Establishment Post, predecessor of Asean Today.

In the mid-80s and early 90s he owned JLF Promotions, the largest above and below the line marketing and PR firm servicing the high-technology industry in Australia. It was sold in 1995.

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