If you wonder which nation in South-East Asia tops in terms of development, the answer is Singapore. Besides Hong Kong of China, Singapore ranks tops ranking in free economies as per Wall Street Journal for Economic freedom. The Singaporeans are rich. Additionally, the majority of the Singaporeans hold enormous bank balance, besides property. In the world the real estate business is costliest as per reports.
From historical evidence, the federation of Singapore happens to be the melting pot of traders from various countries. This island nation bears footprints of Malaysian livelihood. Maybe it was part of Malaysia at one point of time.Then ousted at a certain time in order to form a self sufficient nation. This island nation is small enough and occupies an area of 280 square miles. Smaller than Kentucky and Lexington. Similar to Lexington, 6 million residents reside within this small place but earns handsome GDP i.e.highest per capita income in the world.
Ancient History of Singapore
In the 3rd century ,Chinese doctrine Pu-lao-chung mentions the existence of Singapore. In Malay language it was called “Pulau Ujong”. The term refers to an island to the south of Malay Peninsula. It can be referred to as the first settlement that came up in 1298-1299AD was named Temasek. In Malay it meant Sea Town.
How did Singapore earn its name?
Further in the 14th century this strategically located island below Malay Peninsula earned a new name. However, legends have a story behind. It says a price from the capital city of Srivijaya, Pelambang. He came for the purpose of hunting on the island. During his trip he sighted a strange animal while hunting. Moreover, the prince considered it as a good omen. Furthermore he built the city and named it as Singapura, land with animals. The Singa word in Sanskrit means Lion. Whereas Pura means city. Later as an emblem Merlion is being represented as the emblem of the city.
More About Merlion
Merlion is the national symbol of Singapore. Head is that of the lion and the body part is that of fish that represents the old fishing culture of the place. However, at the Raffles square you can find a smaller version with a fountain of water dripping from the mouth. Whereas a bigger version can be found in Sentosa Island, an entertainment park built adjacent to singapore.
Political Background of Singapore
As per history five kings ruled in Singapore. Being located at the tip of Malaysian peninsula it became a hub for trading activities. If you can identify it is located at the confluence of several seas. The Portugese battleship, Arabian dhow, Buginese schooner and Chinese vessels used Singapore as an important port. Till time British government took over.
Contribution of Raffles for Singapore
Meanwhile, the British was on lookout for a port that could suffice trade intents in Malacca Strait.
In early 1819 the then Lieutenant- Governor of Bengkulu in Sumatra, Raffles came to the island to envisage the effectiveness. Further, the swampy island was identified to have immense potential for setting up trading links. Subsequently, Raffles persuaded the local ruler to hand over the island to him. He took initiative to convert into a favorable trading link.
Transformation of Singapore
Once a swampy island soon became the most sorted after trade hub. Additionally it became a center of attraction for lots of immigrants from India, China, Malaysia, and more. In 1822, Raffles Plan for Raffles Town was rolled out. Also named as Jackson plan the intention was to regularize the disorderliness arising in the colony. Furthermore, Singapore at the planning stage was segregated into four zones. Each zone depicted etnic zone of the citizens of Singapore. The city kept on developing day by day.
Major Zones in Singapore
The European traders, rich asians, and Eurasians began residing in European zone, the chinese traders settled at Chinatown as well as the south eastern parts of Singapore river. To the north of Chinatown, Chulia kampong became residence for Indians in what is also known as little India today. Moreover Arabs, Muslims, Malay who migrated to Singapore, made Kampong gelam as their zone. However Singapore continued developing.
Several banks and associated corporate establishments started building headquarters in Singapore. Moreover, the presence of Chambers of commerce added to economic growth. The causeway linking Johor Bahru with Singapore in 1924, led to further developments.Besides , the economy of Singapore has flourished in fields of healthcare and education. Today, Singapore has become the wealthiest country in the world.
Effects of World War II
The noticeable prospect of Singapore was almost brought to a halt during the phase of World War II. In 1941, Singapore was attacked by the Japanese. The British commanders were fooled as the latter expected a sea invasion from sea on south. However, the Japanese army struck from north of the island. The British-led force lost terribly. Moreover, this was an historical loss from the British. Further, the Japanese renamed the nation as Syonan-to. Once, the British impression of Singapore as an Impregnable Fortress was dented. In spite of being greater in number, the Allied forces surrendered to the Japanese.
However, in 1945 the Japanese surrendered Singapore back to British army. Till the dissolution of Straits settlement. This was a treaty made between Melca, Singapore, and Penang. Furthermore, Singapore became a crown British colony in 1946.
Independence of Singapore
The first prime minister of Singapore was Lee Kuan Yew..He won by majority 43 seats from the People’s Action Party. The general election was held in 1959. However in 1963, Malaysia was formed. Besides, Malaya Federation, Sarawak, and Sabah.Singapore got included to maintain closer bondage. However, the merger plan didn’t go well for Singapore. Within two years of association with Malaysia, Singapore left the merger. The emergence of a superior and independent democratic nation.
If you want to walk through the past heritage sites of Singapore, you should be taking a walk around take heritage colonies. The remains of multiculturalism, war, and heritage can be found scattered throughout the city.
Knowing More About Singapore
The federation nation of Singapore is reputed worldwide. It is the most advanced nation in southeast Asia. It holds the strongest position in the world economic standard.
- Highest per capita GDP worldwide
- Least amount of corruption recorded in Singapore
- Stout law enforcement policies, lower complaints of criminal offences
- Besides economy, highest rankers in fields of education, technology, and healthcare
- Additionally the quality of life is appreciable
- Worldwide transparency is the highest at Singapore
- Happening nightlife, the city never sleeps
- The ranking is third in the world. Whereas, in the US it is thirty-sixth
- Singapore houses immense amount of tropical greenery that are used for decoration throughout the city
- It has the world’s best airport ie. Changi, renowned for interior decoration
- Nearness to important countries like Malaysia, Indonesia, and Philippines
- The cleanliness in spite of the density of population is reputed worldwide
- Gatherings and anti-political remarks are strictly prohibited. Use of chewing gum or use of opium seeds are banned
- Tourist attractions are plenty, visit the malls throughout the day. Even stationary shops remain open 24×7 hours.
- Smaller in space. Six million people needs to accommodate that small area
- Real Estates prices are excessively high
- Taxes are high with respect to other places
- As per human rights the laws imposed by the Singapore government are draconian. Further death sentence can be awarded in case of drug links
Best Time to Visit
Just eighty-fine to north of the Tropic of equator. Singapore is located. Hence, you can experience tropical climates. You are supposed to get year long warmth with persistent rain. The months November and December are known to have most rains. You are suggested to visit during festivals. Especially during Chinese New Year. However, during those you can expect more rush.
Budget Travel Guide For Singapore Visit
If you can cuttle a little bit on your desire you can save money during your travel. Moreover, Singapore is a costly place but if you can cut budget short you won’t lose
- Try restricting expenses for lavish staying, shopping and partying. Moreover, if you are travelling alone you can get accommodation at youth hostels or via couch surfing. However, if you are with family, try homestay or rentals for a short time.
- Avoid partying as much as possible. The consumption of alcohol is pretty costly. The local people try it at food courts.
- Buying filtered water bottles are costly. Moreover, you can save using refill bottles because even the tap water is safe to drink.
- If you want to save avoid shopping don’t spend too much time in shopping malls Instead enjoy the natural parks and green well decorated spaces free of cost
- Food courts are plenty. Quality wise perfect, you can enjoy ethical food variety in these food courts. Even the localities have a tendency to visit food courts and avoid cooking at home. If you find a lady with a bandage in hand, surely she tried cooking last night.
- For travelling within the city, instead of renting a car, it would be better to travel by metro. Then walk or ride a bus to reach your destination. You need an EZ-link card to access the metro and bus.
Singapore to Malaysia Land connection
Plenty of luxury buses ply between Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia and Singapore. The causeway that has been inaugurated has made travelling easier. The distance between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur depends on traffic and immigration. Or else in five to six hours you can reach the terminus. Moreover, the services are better than flights. Many corporations have arranged bus service for their employees to travel between Malaysia and Singapore.
Singapore’s Duty and Import Restrictions
An important caution for you to remember. The duty and import restrictions are stricter than any other nation globally. There is no duty-free policy available in tobacco items.Hence, smokers beware. Maybe your used cigarette packet during entry to Singapore gets unseen during entry at Changi. But those bought in Malaysia are not free. Hence,if you buy tobacco products in Malaysia you better throw them away while returning to Singapore.
Plan Activity While in Singapore
Now that you know that singapore your chances of attraction would have been restricted. But, Singapore is not so. You don’t feel a shortage of amusements.
- You can enjoy the food scene. Lots of Thai, Indian, and Malay cuisines can be tried throughout the day. You can try restaurants or food by hawkers depending on budget.
- If you want to avoid the hustle and bustle of busy city life, you can visit Natural Reserves. Plenty of green vegetation is spread around the city. Breathe fresh air
- Take a cultural tour around the city. Singapore is a multi-cultural place, you get to know about Thai, Malay, Indian, Chinese, etc. cultures simultaneously
- The neighborhood of Marina Bay is always bustling with crowds. It has multiple food joints along the shore of bay.It is a hub for night clubs and museums.
- The most enjoyable place is Sentosa Islands. You can make trips for free. Possible free trips at Tanjong Beach, some sports on Siloso beach, visit the tip of Asia,take a joy ride and a guided tour to uncover secrets of the island.
- Last but not the least the splendid malls. You get fashionable items of world class finish. It will suffice all your needs. Moreover, viewing flashy items will keep you happy.
Singapore is a costly city. But living standards are not expensive if luxury is prevented. If you want to experience the wealthiest, advanced and clean world class city experience you must visit. Now they have flourished in economic fields, they are progressive in education and healthcare. Additionally, the beautifully decorated and modern type of city will keep you addicted.
One thought on “Singapore: A Developed Cultural Economy”