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  1. #2908
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    Default S'pore-Russian commission

    The Straits Times
    Sep 28, 2010

    It will open new doors for bilateral exchanges

    By Jeremy Au Yong

    SINGAPORE and Russia cemented their growing friendship yesterday by agreeing to work together on a broad range of areas, from trade to the arts.

    Both sides issued an eight-page joint statement outlining a myriad of ways to take the bilateral relationship further.

    In the field of culture, for instance, both sides agreed to explore exchanges of artists, arts institutions and museums.

    That could mean, in theory, paintings and exhibits from Russia's renowned State Hermitage Museum coming to Singapore, as items from the Asian Civilisations Museum here head the other way.

    Similarly, there was talk of Singapore sharing its experience in implementing e-government with Russia, which undertook, among other things, to share its knowledge of nuclear power plants with Singapore.

    The broad scope of cooperation - finalised during a two-hour meeting at the Istana - was a sign of the extensive achievement of an inter-governmental commission (IGC) that was officially launched yesterday.


    SM Goh (left) and Russian Federation Deputy PM Sergey Sobyanin also spoke at the Russia-Singapore Business Forum at Marina Bay Sands yesterday. -- ST PHOTO: AZIZ HUSSIN
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  2. #2909
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    Default GIC to raise $3.2b for IPO

    The Straits Times
    Sep 28, 2010

    By Francis Chan, Companies Correspondent

    THE biggest public float of shares on the local stock market since SingTel in 1993 is about to get under way.

    The Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) is set to raise about $3.2 billion by listing its logistics unit Global Logistic Properties (GLP) on the Singapore Exchange.

    The initial public offering (IPO), to be launched next month, will comprise almost 1.8 billion shares priced between $1.78 and $1.96 each.

    About one billion will be offered to global investors, while key institutional investors will get 589 million shares.

    There is also good news for retail investors. The preliminary IPO prospectus said about 119 million shares will be offered to the public.

    This will be the first time a company majority-owned by Singapore's sovereign wealth fund is to be listed.

  3. #2910
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    Default S'pore research team studying potential for storing live tissues

    Channel NewsAsia
    27 September 2010 1836 hrs

    SINGAPORE : A research team from the National University of Singapore (NUS) is studying the potential of growing tissues that can be stored and used as needed.

    Termed "off-the-shelf" products, they represent a viable substitute for donor transplants.

    Most people are familiar with the idea of buying ready-to-use items "off-the-shelf" at the supermarket. But can the same concept be applied to tissues and organs for transplant surgery?

    The idea is being studied by the NUS research team, which hopes to create cartilage, ligament or bone tissue in a lab that can be stored.

    Professor James Goh, leader of the Tissue Engineering Programme at NUS' Life Sciences Institute, said: "We are working towards trying to create or regenerate tissue that can be used in the operating theatre when the need arises, without the patient having to go through two operations to try and recover the cells and then implanting them in a second operation."

    This method would be most useful when large portions of tissue are missing - as in the case of bone disease.

    Currently, surgeons have to replace the bone from a different part of the patient's body or use those from cadavers or even metal implants.

    Should Prof Goh's research pan out, living tissues can be used instead.

    The field of regenerative medicine is relatively new in Singapore, having gained traction only in the last 10 to 15 years.

    And the race is on to bring these ready-to-use tissue products to the market, with similar research being carried out in countries such as the US, Europe, Japan and China.

    Singapore's research team has had some successful cases of tissue transplants in the lab. But it will still take another 5 to 10 years before human testing is possible. One challenge is the creation of "scaffolds" that can hold the shape of the tissue as it is growing.

    S'pore research team studying potential for storing live tissues
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  4. #2911
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    Default Tougher requirements for foreign entrepreneurs to become PRs

    TODAY
    28 September 2010 1007 hrs

    By Esther Ng,

    SINGAPORE: It is a permanent residence scheme for million-dollar investors, one which spells out clearly the financial criteria that an applicant needs to fulfill. But from Oct 1, foreign entrepreneurs applying for permanent residence under the Contact Singapore's Global Investor Programme (GIP) will find the bar raised.

    They must now have a company turnover of at least $30 million per annum in the most recent year and at least $30 million per annum on average for the last three years to qualify. Previously, they needed at least $10 million in the most recent year and $10 million on average for the last three years.

    Also, from Jan 1, they will have to invest at least $2.5 million in a new business entity; or in the expansion of an existing business operation; or in a GIP-approved fund. In the past, entrepreneurs needed only to invest between $1 million and $2 million.

    The changes, announced on Aug 31 on the Contact Singapore website, come on the back of a tighter immigration policy. They are also a sign that the Government is being "more selective" about the kind of foreigners the country is taking in, said Government Parliamentary Committee (Manpower) deputy chairman Charles Chong.

    "In slowing down the number of immigrants, we could either set the criteria higher or resort to balloting which we don't want. We want to attract higher category applicants. These economic migrants are beneficial for the country," he said.

    Mr Chong, who is a Member of Parliament for the Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC, dismissed the notion that this was an election ploy. He described the move as a "general policy shift to reduce the number of immigrants".

    However, he acknowledged that the changes could result in fewer entrepreneurs qualifying under the GIP scheme.

    Still, Mr Chong added: "The policy is not cast in stone, I'm sure the Government will be flexible and adjust to the needs of the nation."

  5. #2912
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    It would be better the other way around, that is break up entities under the sovereign fund and invite entrepreneurs from all over the world, with an offer of PR status, to bid for them.
    Sovereign funds are useful for big countries to be used as an economic weapon, as many countries are salivating after your money. But one large investment, unwisely made, may bankrupt a sovereign fund. This sort of risk is avoided if you have a thousand and one or more private entrepreneurs to take such risk. No matter how wise or smart a sovereign fund is managed it is a certainty that it will get walloped one day. As renown cosmologist Stephen Hawking says there must be imperfection in nature to create something.
    I can understand some skepticism expressed here http://www.temasekreview.com/2010/09...figures-given/.

  6. #2913
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    Foreign talents from China and India are not to be "fooled" around with as both China and India, unlike other ASEAN countries, can "crack" the whip if they are aggrieved.
    This may be something small but it gives you a flavor of what can happen http://www.temasekreview.com/2010/09...re-of-its-fts/

  7. #2914
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    Philippines are angry about alleged abuse of their on-the job trainees in Singapore, http://www.gmanews.tv/story/202126/p...n-spore-sought.

  8. #2915
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    Wonder why Singapore is mounting a mass recruiting drive for Malaysian engineers unless they are very short of qualified local engineers http://www.temasekreview.com/2010/09...s-in-malaysia/

  9. #2916
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    Top overseas universities do have reservations about cooperating with Singapore, http://www.yaledailynews.com/news/20...apore-college/.

  10. #2917
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    Default Book on late CJ

    The Straits Times
    Sep 29, 2010

    Wee Chong Jin served for 27 years as top man on the Bench

    By K.C. Vijayan, Law Correspondent

    IN THE words of the late Chief Justice Wee Chong Jin, the best judge is he who says the least.

    But a biography launched yesterday spoke volumes about the man who was the top man on the Bench for 27 years - a record that is likely to stand for all time in Singapore's history, according to current Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong.

    The 304-page book, The First Chief, profiles the former Chief Justice's life and times here and was authored by Mr John Koh, a lawyer turned investment adviser who then turned bibliophile.

    Chief Justice Wee, who died in 2005 at age 87, served at the Bar and was appointed High Court judge in 1957 before being made the country's first Chief Justice at the age of 46.

    He was also the longest serving Chief Justice within Commonwealth nations.

    Among his other accolades, he was the first Asian lawyer to be made a judge in the High Court when Singapore was under British rule. Some 30 years later, he was conferred an honorary doctorate by Oxford University.


    (From left) Mrs Elisabeth Chan, Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong and Mrs Cecilia Wee viewing photographs of former Chief Justice Wee Chong Jin at the book launch yesterday. His son Patrick Wee looks on in the background. -- ST PHOTO: AIDAH RAUF
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  11. #2918
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    Default YOG boosts tourism

    The Straits Times
    Sep 29, 2010

    By Jessica Lim

    THE number of tourists to Singapore last month shot up 18 per cent compared to August last year, due in part to the Youth Olympic Games.

    The 996,000 arrivals set a record high for August, the ninth straight month of record monthly visitor arrivals.

    The Singapore Tourism Board (STB), in releasing its monthly figures, also attributed the growth to the pull of the two integrated resorts (IRs) and the continuing strength of the Asian economy.

    However, the arrival numbers fall shy of the more than one million visitors logged for July - the first and only time the one-million barrier was busted since 1967, when the authorities started keeping monthly arrival records.

    Industry players are expecting the trend of monthly record highs to continue, but say the STB's targets - to entice 11.5 million to 12.5 million visitors into spending between $17.5 billion and $18.5 billion here this year - will be tough to meet.

    Predictions had been that the target would be met or even exceeded, but now the tourism sector is heading into the relatively quieter months of October and November and no major events are on the calendar, noted National Association of Travel Agents Singapore chief executive Robert Khoo.

  12. #2919
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    Default RSAF to get 12 jet trainers

    The Straits Times
    Sep 29, 2010

    SINGAPORE Technologies Aerospace Ltd (ST Aerospace) has been awarded a contract to acquire 12 M-346 aircraft and a ground-based training system for the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) replacement programme.

    The aircraft will be provided by Alenia Aermacchi, while the training system will be supplied by Boeing, said a Ministry of Defence statement on Tuesday.

    ST Aerospace will undertake the overall management of the AJT programme. The 12 M-346 aircraft and the ground-based training system are expected to be delivered from 2012.

    'The acquisitions of the M-346 aircraft and the ground-based training system mark a significant milestone in the RSAF's force development, enhancing the capabilities and operational readiness of the Singapore Armed Forces,' said Mindef.


    ST Aerospace has been awarded a contract to acquire 12 M-346 aircraft, similar to one (below) seen in the recent Singapore Airshow 2010. -- ST PHOTO: LIM SIN THAI
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  13. #2920
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    Default MM turns up after fall

    The Straits Times
    Sep 29, 2010

    THE audience at the Russia-Singapore Business Forum applauded Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew last night, after it emerged that he did not allow his treatment in hospital to keep him away from the dialogue.

    Mr Lee had needed physiotherapy because of a fall the previous day.

    As a result, the dialogue began an hour late, at 5.45pm.

    He arrived at the talk wearing track shoes.

    Earlier, Ambassador Michael Tay, the executive director of the forum's organising council, explained the delay to the 600 businessmen from Russia, Asia, the United States and Europe.

    'On behalf of Minister Mentor Lee, I would like to apologise for the delay. Minister Mentor had to go to the hospital for physiotherapy because he had a fall yesterday. But despite that, he is here with us,' he said to loud applause.


    Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew had needed physiotherapy because of a fall the previous day. -- PHOTO: ST/FRANCIS ONG PG
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  14. #2921
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    Default Challenge for Singapore & Russia is to grow entrepreneurial pool: MM

    Channel NewsAsia
    28 September 2010 2343 hrs

    By Hoe Yeen Nie

    SINGAPORE: The challenge for Singapore and Russia is to grow their pool of entrepreneurs.

    Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew said this at a dialogue organised by the Russia-Singapore Business Forum on Tuesday evening.

    Minister Mentor Lee arrived for the dialogue about an hour late as he had gone for a medical checkup.

    Moderator Michael Tay, executive director of Russia-Singapore Business Forum Organising Council, explained that Mr Lee had a fall on Monday.

    Mr Lee looked well and he took questions from the floor.

    Kicking off the session, Mr Tay asked about Russia's growth over the next decade.

    Mr Lee said Russia's challenge was to develop its pool of entrepreneurs, just like Singapore.

    He said: "We're trying to do that. But we are hampered by culture. We're largely Chinese and Indians. And both Chinese and Indians, the best go into government, (they) don't go into enterprise.

    "The economy can be structured to allow enterprise, but enterprise itself must be done by entrepreneurs - people who say, 'ah yes, I will make that into a money-making venture'. And they do. It happens in America, it can happen here.

    "The trouble with us is, Singapore is small. So when we discover something, we have to go to Silicon Valley to get extra talent to join us, whereupon they know what we're doing, and they improve on it, and beat us. So it's a tough fight. But slowly we'll climb up the technology ladder; there's no other way."

    During the dialogue, Mr Lee was also asked about his most important lesson as a leader of Singapore, to which he said for Singapore to work, the system must be kept incorruptible, meritocratic and efficient.

    And it was these traits that moved the country from being a purely Asian one in the two, three decades after independence to an increasingly cosmopolitan one, he said.

    The hour-long session also saw questions on Sino-Japan relations, as well as the future growth trajectories of countries like Brazil, China, India and Russia.

    There were some lighter moments too.

    "MM, are you happy?" asked Mr Tay.

    "Sometimes, not all the time. A person who is happy all the time, I think, won't make much progress," replied Mr Lee.

    The annual forum marks growing economic ties between Russia and Singapore.

    Political relations are getting warmer too.

    On Tuesday afternoon, Russian Deputy Chairman Sergey Sobyanin met Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the Istana.

    Mr Sobyanin is in Singapore for the inaugural meeting of the Russia-Singapore Inter-Governmental Commission, a high-level grouping whose objective is to foster bilateral trade and investment.

    Mr Sobyanin co-chairs the commission with Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong.

    The next meeting of the commission will take place in Moscow next year.

  15. #2922
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    Default MediaCorp TV to broadcast "live" key events of Commonwealth Games

    Channel NewsAsia
    28 September 2010 1808 hrs

    SINGAPORE: MediaCorp TV will broadcast "live" key events of the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games which will be held from 3-14 October.

    There will be "live" coverage of the table tennis and badminton events featuring Team Singapore, as well as the opening and closing ceremonies of the Games.

    Besides these, viewers can also expect to catch some five-and-a-half hours of Commonwealth Games action daily on Channel 5.

    There will be a "Daily Action Belt" from 3pm to 8pm and "Commonwealth Highlights" from 11pm to 11.30pm.

    The "Daily Action Belt" will bring viewers "live" action while "Commonwealth Highlights", hosted by Paul Sng, will be a daily round-up of the day's highlights.


    A policeman stand guard at the Commonwealth Games' village entrance in New Delhi, India.
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  16. #2923
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    Default Temasek Poly signs MOU with ST Electronics to develop cyber security expertise

    Channel NewsAsia
    28 September 2010 1518 hrs

    SINGAPORE: Temasek Polytechnic has signed an MOU with ST Electronics (Info-Security) to develop cyber security expertise in Singapore.

    ST Electronics (Info-Security) is offering full scholarships to selected students in the Diploma in Cyber & Digital Security, and Temasek Poly's newest course, the Diploma in Digital Forensics.

    Book prizes and internship will also be available as part of the course curriculum.
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  17. #2924
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    Default Ionescu to remain in prison while awaiting trial

    (I'm sure many of us are following this case closely. I missed this report because of the YOG and it is perhaps timely to remind us that the court trial is to resume on Oct 6.)

    TODAY
    05:55 AM Aug 19, 2010

    By Claudia Craiu in Bucharest

    Former Romanian diplomat Silviu Ionescu will remain in prison as he awaits trial for two hit-and-run accidents in Singapore last year.

    After many hours of deliberating the evidence, a Romanian court decided yesterday to extend the warrant of arrest for the 50-year-old Ionescu.

    The session began on Tuesday, with Ionescu and his attorney, Mr Nelu Tasca, again arguing against what they said was the lack of incriminating evidence.

    The defence counsel highlighted the point that a key witness in the coroner's inquiry in Singapore, who had identified Ionescu as the alleged driver of the car on the night of the accidents, was not named in the prosecutor's case file.

    However, the judge ruled against Ionescu's plea.

    Mr Tasca has already taken his case to the Bucharest Appeal Court, which is Ionescu's last chance to get his arrest warrant revoked.

    Ionescu's trial is scheduled to resume on Oct 6. He has been charged with culpable homicide, making false statements and leaving the site of an accident.

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