Singapore

Singapore

Background

Singapore was founded as a British trading colony in 1819. It joined the Malaysian Federation in 1963 but separated two years later and became independent. Singapore subsequently became one of the world’s most prosperous countries with strong international trading links (its port is one of the world’s busiest in terms of tonnage handled) and with per capita GDP equal to that of the leading nations of Western Europe.

Geography

Location:
Southeastern Asia, islands between Malaysia and Indonesia

Geographic coordinates:
1 22 N, 103 48 E

Map references:
Southeast Asia

Area:
total: 697 sq km
country comparison to the world: 192
land: 687 sq km
water: 10 sq km

Area – comparative:
slightly more than 3.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries:
0 km

Coastline:
193 km

Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 3 nm
exclusive fishing zone: within and beyond territorial sea, as defined in treaties and practice

Climate:
tropical; hot, humid, rainy; two distinct monsoon seasons – Northeastern monsoon (December to March) and Southwestern monsoon (June to September); inter-monsoon – frequent afternoon and early evening thunderstorms

Terrain:
lowland; gently undulating central plateau contains water catchment area and nature preserve

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Singapore Strait 0 m
highest point: Bukit Timah 166 m

Natural resources:
fish, deepwater ports

Land use:
arable land: 0.89%
permanent crops: 0.14%
other: 98.97% (2011)

Irrigated land:
NA

Total renewable water resources:
0.6 cu km (2011)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 0.19 cu km/yr (47%/53%/0%)
per capita: 81.97 cu m/yr (2005)

Natural hazards:
NA

Environment – current issues:
industrial pollution; limited natural freshwater resources; limited land availability presents waste disposal problems; seasonal smoke/haze resulting from forest fires in Indonesia

Environment – international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography – note:
focal point for Southeast Asian sea routes


People & Society

Nationality:
noun: Singaporean(s)
adjective: Singapore

Ethnic groups:
Chinese 74.2%, Malay 13.3%, Indian 9.2%, other 3.3% (2013 est.)

Languages:
Mandarin (official) 36.3%, English (official) 29.8%, Hokkien 8.1%, Tamil (official) 4.4%, Cantonese 4.1%, Teochew 3.2%, Malay (official) 1.2%, other Chinese dialects 1.1%, other 1.7% (2010 est.)

Religions:
Buddhist 33.9%, Muslim 14.3%, Taoist 11.3%, Catholic 7.1%, Hindu 5.2%, other Christian 11%, other 0.7%, none 16.4% (2010 est.)

Population:
5,567,301 (July 2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 116

Age structure:
0-14 years: 13.4% (male 381,452/female 364,050)
15-24 years: 17.8% (male 487,593/female 502,637)
25-54 years: 50.3% (male 1,365,872/female 1,434,495)
55-64 years: 8.5% (male 279,243/female 278,852)

Dependency ratios:
total dependency ratio: 35.8 %
youth dependency ratio: 21.3 %
elderly dependency ratio: 14.5 %
potential support ratio: 6.9 (2014 est.)

Median age:
total: 33.8 years
male: 33.7 years
female: 33.9 years (2014 est.)

Population growth rate:
1.92% (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 57

Birth rate:
8.1 births/1,000 population (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 221

Death rate:
3.42 deaths/1,000 population (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 217

Net migration rate:
14.55 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 8

Urbanization:
urban population: 100% of total population (2011)
rate of urbanization: 1.1% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 0.97 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.82 male(s)/female
total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2014 est.)

Mother’s mean age at first birth:
29.8 (2010 est.)

Maternal mortality rate:
3 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
country comparison to the world: 182

Infant mortality rate:
total: 2.53 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 220
male: 2.69 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 2.36 deaths/1,000 live births (2014 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 84.38 years
country comparison to the world: 4
male: 81.86 years
female: 87.07 years (2014 est.)

Total fertility rate:
0.8 children born/woman (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 224

Health expenditures:
4.6% of GDP (2011)
country comparison to the world: 150

Physicians density:
1.92 physicians/1,000 population (2010)

Hospital bed density:
2.7 beds/1,000 population (2011)

Drinking water source:
improved:
urban: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved:
urban: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2011 est.)

Sanitation facility access:
improved:
urban: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved:
urban: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2011 est.)

HIV/AIDS – adult prevalence rate:
0.1% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 141

HIV/AIDS – people living with HIV/AIDS:
3,400 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 131

HIV/AIDS – deaths:
fewer than 100 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 153

Obesity – adult prevalence rate:
7.1% (2008)
country comparison to the world: 142

Children under the age of 5 years underweight:
3.3% (2000)
country comparison to the world: 109

Education expenditures:
3% of GDP (2013)
country comparison to the world: 140

Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 95.9%
male: 98%
female: 93.8% (2010 est.)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24:
total: 6.7% (2012)
country comparison to the world: 131


Government

Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Singapore
conventional short form: Singapore
local long form: Republic of Singapore
local short form: Singapore

Government type:
parliamentary republic

Capital:
name: Singapore
geographic coordinates: 1 17 N, 103 51 E
time difference: UTC+8 (13 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions:
none

Independence:
9 August 1965 (from Malaysian Federation)

National holiday:
National Day, 9 August (1965)

Constitution:
several previous; latest adopted 22 December 1965; amended several times, last in 2010 (2013)

Legal system:
English common law

International law organization participation:
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt

Suffrage:
21 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Tony TAN Keng Yam (since 1 September 2011)
head of government: Prime Minister LEE Hsien Loong (since 12 August 2004); Deputy Prime Minister TEO Chee Hean (since 1 April 2009) and Deputy Prime Minister Tharman SHANMUGARATNAM (since 21 May 2011)
cabinet: appointed by president, responsible to parliament
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elections: president elected by popular vote for six-year term; election last held on 27 August 2011 (next to be held by August 2017); following legislative elections, leader of majority party or leader of majority coalition usually appointed prime minister by president; deputy prime ministers appointed by president
election results: Tony TAN Keng Yam elected president from a field of four candidates with 35.2% of the votes cast

Legislative branch:
unicameral Parliament (87 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms); note – in addition, there are up to nine nominated members (NMP) and up to nine Non-Constituency Members of Parliament (NCMP); traditionally, members of parties that came closest to winning seats may be appointed as NCMPs; NMPs are appointed by the president to ensure that a wide range of community views are present in Parliament; NMPs are independent and non-partisan members
elections: last held on 7 May 2011 (next to be held by 2017)
election results: percent of vote by party – PAP 60.1%, WP 12.8%, NSP 12.1%, others 15%; seats by party – PAP 81, WP 6; (seats as of February 2013 PAP 80, WP 7)

Judicial branch:
highest court(s): Supreme Court (consists of the president or chief justice and 16 justices and organized into an upper tier Appeal Court and a lower tier High Court)
judge selection and term of office: all judges appointed by the president from candidates recommended by the prime minister after consultation with the chief justice; justices appointed for life
subordinate courts: district, magistrates’, juvenile, family, community, and coroners’ courts; small claims tribunals

Political parties and leaders:
National Solidarity Party or NSP [Jeannette CHONG-ARULDROSS]
People’s Action Party or PAP [LEE Hsien Loong]
Reform Party [Kenneth JEYARETNAM]
Singapore Democratic Alliance or SDA [Desmond LIM] (includes Singapore Justice Party or SJP [Desmond LIM] and Singapore National Malay Organization/Pertubuhan Kebangsaan Melayu Singapura or PKMS [Abu Bin MOHAMED])
Singapore Democratic Party or SDP [CHEE Soon Juan]
Singapore People’s Party or SPP [CHIAM See Tong]
Workers’ Party or WP [LOW Thia Khiang]

Political pressure groups and leaders:
none

International organization participation:
ADB, AOSIS, APEC, ARF, ASEAN, BIS, C, CP, EAS, FATF, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OPCW, Pacific Alliance (observer), PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNMIT, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Ashok Kumar MIRPURI (since 24 July 2012)
chancery: 3501 International Place NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 537-3100
FAX: [1] (202) 537-0876
consulate(s) general: New York, San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Kirk WAGER (since 4 September 2013)
embassy: 27 Napier Road, Singapore 258508
mailing address: FPO AP 96507-0001
telephone: [65] 6476-9100
FAX: [65] 6476-9340

Flag description:
two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and white; near the hoist side of the red band, there is a vertical, white crescent (closed portion is toward the hoist side) partially enclosing five white five-pointed stars arranged in a circle; red denotes brotherhood and equality; white signifies purity and virtue; the waxing crescent moon symbolizes a young nation on the ascendancy; the five stars represent the nation’s ideals of democracy, peace, progress, justice, and equality

National symbol(s):
lion, merlion (mythical half lion-half fish creature), orchid

National anthem:
name: “Majulah Singapura” (Onward Singapore)


Economy

Economy – overview:
Singapore has a highly developed and successful free-market economy. It enjoys a remarkably open and corruption-free environment, stable prices, and a per capita GDP higher than that of most developed countries. The economy depends heavily on exports, particularly in consumer electronics, information technology products, pharmaceuticals, and on a growing financial services sector. The economy contracted 0.6% in 2009 as a result of the global financial crisis, but rebounded 15.1% in 2010, on the strength of renewed exports, before slowing to in 2011-13, largely a result of soft demand for exports during the second European recession. Over the longer term, the government hopes to establish a new growth path that focuses on raising productivity. Singapore has attracted major investments in pharmaceuticals and medical technology production and will continue efforts to establish Singapore as Southeast Asia’s financial and high-tech hub.

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$339 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 41
$323 billion (2012 est.)
$313.3 billion (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):
$295.7 billion (2013 est.)

GDP – real growth rate:
4.1% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 74
1.9% (2012 est.)
6% (2011 est.)

GDP – per capita (PPP):
$62,400 (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 7
$60,800 (2012 est.)
$60,400 (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars

Gross national saving:
44.6% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 9
44.9% of GDP (2012 est.)
47.4% of GDP (2011 est.)

GDP – composition, by end use:
household consumption: 38.4%
government consumption: 10.3%
investment in fixed capital: 23.1%
investment in inventories: 3.1%
exports of goods and services: 195.8%
imports of goods and services: -170.7%
(2013 est.)

GDP – composition, by sector of origin:
agriculture: 0%
industry: 29.4%
services: 70.6% (2013 est.)

Agriculture – products:
orchids, vegetables; poultry, eggs; fish, ornamental fish

Industries:
electronics, chemicals, financial services, oil drilling equipment, petroleum refining, rubber processing and rubber products, processed food and beverages, ship repair, offshore platform construction, life sciences, entrepot trade

Industrial production growth rate:
1.7% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 132

Labor force:
3.444 million
country comparison to the world: 99
note: excludes non-residents (2013 est.)

Labor force – by occupation:
agriculture: 1.3%
industry: 18.6%
services: 80.1%
note: excludes non-residents (2013)

Unemployment rate:
1.9% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 12
2% (2012 est.)

Population below poverty line:
NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 4.4%
highest 10%: 23.2% (2008)

Distribution of family income – Gini index:
46.3 (2013)
country comparison to the world: 32
47.8 (2012)

Budget:
revenues: $45.67 billion
expenditures: $41.83 billion
note: expenditures include both operational and development expenditures (2013 est.)

Taxes and other revenues:
15.4% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 191

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):
1.3% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 24

Public debt:
105.5% of GDP (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 13
108.4% of GDP (2012 est.)
note: for Singapore, public debt consists largely of Singapore Government Securities (SGS) issued to assist the Central Provident Fund (CPF), which administers Singapore’s defined contribution pension fund; special issues of SGS are held by the CPF, and are non-tradable; the government has not borrowed to finance deficit expenditures since the 1980s; Singapore has no external public debt

Fiscal year:

1 April – 31 March

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
2.4% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 90
4.6% (2013 est.)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
5.38% (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 145
5.38% (31 December 2012 est.)

Stock of narrow money:
$123.5 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 30
$112.6 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

Stock of broad money:
$519.9 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 22
$493 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:
$465.7 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 27
$417.7 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$718.8 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 18
$709.4 billion (31 December 2012)
$569.4 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Current account balance:
$54.4 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 12
$49.38 billion (2012 est.)

Exports:
$410.3 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 15
$408.4 billion (2012 est.)

Exports – commodities:
machinery and equipment (including electronics and telecommunications), pharmaceuticals and other chemicals, refined petroleum products, food and beverages

Exports – partners:
Malaysia 12.3%, Hong Kong 10.9%, China 10.8%, Indonesia 10.6%, US 5.5%, Japan 4.6%, Australia 4.2%, South Korea 4% (2012)

Imports:
$373 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 15
$379.7 billion (2012 est.)

Imports – commodities:
machinery and equipment, mineral fuels, chemicals, foodstuffs, consumer goods

Imports – partners:
Malaysia 10.6%, China 10.3%, US 10.2%, South Korea 6.8%, Japan 6.2%, Indonesia 5.3%, Saudi Arabia 4.5%, UAE 4.1% (2012)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$273.1 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 12
$259.3 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

Debt – external:
$1.174 trillion (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 16
$1.088 trillion (31 December 2011 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment – at home:
$585.8 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 15
$535.6 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment – abroad:
$367.8 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 18
$355.2 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Exchange rates:
Singapore dollars (SGD) per US dollar –
1.25 (2013 est.)
1.2497 (2012 est.)
1.3635 (2010 est.)
1.4545 (2009)
1.415 (2008)


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