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  1. #4013
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Up close and personal with the Merlion

    Channel NewsAsia

    By Sharon See / Evelyn Lam | Posted: 26 February 2011 1822 hrs



    An artist's rendering of The Merlion Hotel

    SINGAPORE: For the first time in nearly 40 years, the Merlion will spend about two months in a five-star hotel room, starting next month, from March 13 to May 15. It is part of an installation by Japanese artist Tatzu Nishi.

    One of his more well-known projects is building a room around a public monument, which creates a scene that is both fascinating and bizarre.

    Matthew Ngui, Artistic Director of the Singapore Biennale 2011, said: "The centre of his idea, is really about bringing art to the masses. People can get to know the Merlion a lot better, by coming very, very close to it. Normally, we view it from the pier, or from over the bridge.

    Mr Ngui also gave assurances about the safety of the project.

    "Because we're building literally a small building around the Merlion, it has to be safe, it has to comply with regulations because it's only a temporary structure."

    Mr Ngui described the initial difficulty of the project, which required approval from various government agencies, such as the Singapore Tourism Board and the Urban Redevelopment Board. However, he said he was heart-warmed by the acceptance of the idea from authorities.

    "I think they appreciated the fact that although the Merlion might not be seen as clearly from the outside, it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the public members to come in and to come really, really close to the Merlion. And in a sense, this is exactly what the artist wishes - to bring art very close to people," he said.

    The crew only has a month to build The Merlion Hotel, which will be unveiled on March 13, and workers have to take care not to damage the national icon.

    A representative from the construction company involved, said: "The weather would be the other challenge. So when we have the sun, we'll make sure that we plan for more workers to be on site so that we can get more things done."

    When completed, the 100 square-metre room will be equipped with a queen-sized bed, balcony, toilet and bathroom, and possibly a TV and fridge.

    Organisers are inviting the public to spend a night at the hotel between April 4 and May 5.

    For S$150, guests are guaranteed a Uniquely Singaporean experience of bunking in with the Merlion.

  2. #4014
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Golf: Singapore's Lam Chih Bing qualifies for British Open

    By TODAY | Posted: 26 February 2011 0704 hrs

    Lam Chih Bing




    CHONBURI, Thailand: Singapore No 2 Lam Chih Bing will play at this year's British Open, after finishing third in a 36-hole international qualifier on Friday.

    The top four in the qualifier would make the cut for the world's oldest major this year and Lam shot a 67 in the second round on Friday at Amata Country Club to finish at 9-under-par, three behind winner and home favourite Prom Meesawat and one behind Tetsuji Hiratsuka of Japan.

    American Jason Knutzon also booked his ticket, finishing fourth at 8-under.

    The Open will be held at Royal St George's from July 14 to 17.

    Prom and Knutzon will make their British Open debuts, while Lam will be playing in his third British Open and first since 2008.

    Asked why he seemed to play well in the qualifiers for the Open, Lam told MediaCorp: "I cannot explain why, I just hit the ball really good today and made quite a few good shots."

    "I'm really excited and looking forward to going back to The Open championship. I haven't set myself any targets but perhaps making the cut would be great for a start," he added.

    First-round leader Kodai Ichihara of Japan missed a birdie chance on the 18th hole to fall one stroke short of forcing a playoff with Knutzon.

    Prom's only win on the Asian Tour was five years ago, and his struggle with injuries saw him lose his tour card last year. But he used his knowledge of the course here to his advantage with eight birdies on Friday, offset by only one bogey.

    "It's a good comeback for me. It's a good feeling," Prom said. "I played to my strengths on this course. I knew which holes to be cautious. To qualify for the oldest major, it's an amazing feeling."

    Hiratsuka fired a 30 on his back nine, including four straight birdies, to return to the Open for the first time since 2004, when he tied for 36th at Royal Troon.

    Singapore No 1 Mardan Mamat was well out of contention, finishing tied for 27th at 2-under. - TODAY

  3. #4015
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default SEA Games: Boost for Singapore's sailors and shooters

    TODAY

    By Ian De Cotta, | Posted: 26 February 2011 0653 hrs



    SINGAPORE: There was good news for Singapore's sailors and shooters after the SEA Games Federation executive meeting in Bali on Friday. Three sailing events and one in shooting - all Olympic disciplines - are set to be included at this year's SEA Games, which will be held in Jakarta and Palembang in Indonesia from Nov 11 to 25.

    The Laser, 470 and RS:X (windsurfing) events and shooting's 3-position competition for men and women were initially excluded but, after their latest meeting, the 11-member federation have decided it will be a part of the SEA Games programme.

    Several national sports associations in countries around the region were unhappy when the list of 43 sports for the 2011 SEA Games were revealed. There was also unhappiness that key Olympic disciplines were missing from among the 545 events.

    Malaysia were dismayed over the exclusion of billiards and snooker and hockey, while the Philippines wanted rugby in. Singapore were disappointed that some events in sailing, shooting and table tennis were left out.

    While the federation stuck to their guns on the make-up and number of sports, they were willing to compromise on including some Olympic events.

    "There had to be a lot of give and take from all sides and while we got the organisers' nod for the events in sailing and shooting, we were not so lucky trying to push the team events for table tennis in," Singapore National Olympic Council secretary-general Chris Chan told MediaCorp in a telephone interview from Bali.

    "The Indonesians tried their best to accommodate all requests but in the end everyone had to be practical about what could be done."

    Chan revealed that there was no time to discuss who would host the 2015 SEA Games. Cambodia, slated to hold the Games, have said they will not be ready and Singapore are willing to host the biennial event. The issue will now be discussed at the federation's next meeting in November, on the sidelines of the Games in Indonesia.

    SingaporeSailing president Dr Benedict Tan welcomed the inclusion of the Olympic class events, although he stressed they did not lobby for it so the Republic could win more gold medals.

    "If you take windsurfing, Indonesia and Thailand are the regional force, not Singapore, but we pushed for the RS:X class because it is an Olympic event. We are good in the 420 class but it is not in the Olympics and we did not push for it," he said.

    "If we are going to develop athletes in the region who can go on to compete in the Olympics, then, the SEA Games must provide the avenue for them to do so."

    Annabel Pennefather, president of the Singapore Hockey Federation, was not surprised her sport failed to get the nod.

    "I resigned myself to it but I hope the next organisers Myanmar in 2013 will include it. Host countries may want to win gold medals from including sports they can excel in but I think we should not lose sight of the original intent of the SEA Games," said Pennefather.

    "Hockey is an Olympic sport and if we are going to compete with the world's best, we need to start developing ourselves from the regional level." - TODAY

  4. #4016
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Check your constituency online

    The Straits Times

    Feb 26, 2011





    Singaporeans can check the constituency they will be in at the next polls by logging on to the Elections Department's website. -- PHOTO: WWW.ELECTIONS.GOV.SG


    NOW that the new electoral map is out, Singaporeans can check the constituency they will be in at the next polls by logging on to the Elections Department's website, www.elections.gov.sg, using their NRIC number and date of issue, or SingPass.

    They can also inspect the Registers of Electors at the Elections Department at 11 Prinsep Link and at 105 community centres and clubs designated as Inspection Centres.

    The Elections Department announced on Friday that the Registers of Electors for the 27 electoral divisions recommended by the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee have been compiled and certified.

    The registers and electoral maps for the next general election are also available for sale to political parties and aspiring candidates. Those with inquiries can contact the Elections Department on 1800-222-1808.

  5. #4017
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Meritocracy has to be balanced with sense of community, says SM Goh

    Channel NewsAsia

    By Hoe Yeen Nie | Posted: 26 February 2011 2206 hrs

    Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong


    SINGAPORE: Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong said Singapore's emphasis on meritocracy has to be balanced with a sense of community and service to others.

    He said otherwise, Singapore stands the risk of nurturing a selfish population.

    "Just emphasising meritocracy alone is like standing on one leg. You need the other leg in order to be stable."

    The second leg, Mr Goh said, is community. "You want to think beyond yourself, beyond the family to the community."

    Mr Goh noted that "sometimes you would step on other people, on their backs, in order to go up to the top of the heap. That's not the kind of society we want."

    He added that help should extend not just to the needy.

    "Even with able people, you need to reach out to one another to bond, especially since we are a multi-ethnic, multi-religious society."

    Mr Goh was addressing youth leaders at a ceremony to mark the end of the NextGen Leadership Programme - targeted at youths from Marine Parade GRC and MacPherson.

    Mr Goh said the programme will continue, even with the new electoral boundaries, which saw Mountbatten ward being carved out to form a single-member constituency and MacPherson being absorbed into Marine Parade GRC.

    The incumbent MP for Mountbatten, Lim Biow Chuan, said he has been preparing for the possibility for some time. SM Goh had previously said that Braddell Heights, Mountbatten and Kaki Bukit could be turned into SMCs.

    Mr Lim said: "We don't go on the basis that we would be part of a GRC. So in a sense, the security blanket has been taken away. You know that you have to make sure you do your ground work well, make sure that you can garner the support for the person who's going to stand at the SMC. So we've made all our preparations since 2009, the committees have been formed, and we're ready."

  6. #4018
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default "Hard Truths" on Singapore's Media

    "Lee Kuan Yew: Hard Truths to keep Singapore going"

    Here is MM Lee's position and views on the media, which has been a source of criticism by critics.

    Question (p 84)

    You have said that freedom of the press is subordinate to the primacy of purpose of an elected government, yet you never nationalized the press or, as in the cas of Malaysia, taken control of ownership of media companies. Did you ever consider it?

    Answer (pp 85-89)

    No. I don't think it's necessary to own the press. First, it'll become like (the former) Radio and Television Singapore and the whole media is controlled by the state which I don't think is good. In fact I wanted to allow the media, even the TV, some channels to be run by SPH, some by MediaCorp, and MediaCorp could eventually be privatised. I think there's value in having the press taking an independent view but within limits, knowing that we will not allow it to undermine government policies.

    We started off on a fundamentally different basis from the Western media. First of all, the Western media never started in this way. It's the freedom of the ownership to hire and fire people, to purvey his views. Even today, Rupert Murdoch, if you take a line which he doesn't agree with, you're fired (13). So you find The Wall Street Journal slowly changing its stance. It's an exaggeration when they talk about a free and independent media. Rupert Murdoch decided to back Tony Blair because he was in fovour of enterprise and against state control of enterprises. So all Murdoch's papers swung in favour of Tony Blair. That made the difference to the election results. Gordon Brown is more state-orientated and more socialist-minded. So I see the Murdoch Group - NewsCorp - taking a more neutral stance, no longer puffing the Labour government up. And when the election comes, I believe they'll puff up the Conservative Party because they will support the kind of policy Rupert Murdoch wants to promote.

    We are not going to allow that in Singapore. We just want straightforward reporting of the hard facts as the news happens. And if you want to crusade there's the editorial and the commentary, which are clearly different from th news reports. I think there's value in that.

    But now, we're going to get a lot of junk news and falsehoods on the Internet and I'm not sure how long it will be before the people get sophisticated enough to know what is rubbish and what is true. We've got to take the risk. It's already part of the media that Singaporeans are exposed to.


    Question

    Going forward, do you see pressures building up for a more open, liberal press?

    Answer

    What is more open? Go on the Internet, you can publish your party's views, you can produce your party magazines, your newspapers, nothing to prevent you from doing all that. But if you commit anything libellous, we'll sue you. Anything which is untrue and defamatory, we will take action.


    Question

    That position on defamation will never change.

    Answer

    That position will never change because once you say you can speak untruths and go unpunished, you're going to have many untruths and they are referred to repeatedly until, like Goebbels (14) said, it begins to be believed.


    Question

    Do you think this perception of a lack of media freedom in Singapore will inhibit Singapore's ambtions as a global city?

    Answer

    That's rubbish. The foreign media used to say we are dull, sterile, no fun, no buzz, now they're moving away from these descriptions. But we are not moving away from our base positions. We are not going to quail under their sustained attacks. If you quail, you're weak and a fool.


    Question

    Just now you said that you value independence from the media in that it should not be campaigning against the government. So if the media campaigns for the government, is that lack of independence?

    Answer

    We do not need the media to campaign for us, we do the campaigning ourselves. Why should we need the media to campaign for us? I won my first election in 1959 with the whole media against me. And I told The Straits Times, when I win I'll settle accounts with them. So they scooted off to KL. Then they found that the KL position was even more untenable, they came back. So, we were not so bad.

    You look at what's happened to New Straits Times (Malaysia) and at The Straits Times (Singapore). One has lost credibility, one has not. Whatever they say about The Straits Times, why are people from all over the world looking at it? Why are they? Because it's credible. What we say is happening in the region, in Singapore, Malaysia and so on, it's true. We're not propagating untruths. So they are looking at The Straits Times as a credible source of news. And the Zaobao is read widely in China, six million hits, not because we pander to them but we state facts and we report things which the Chinese newspapers do not.


    Question

    I mean it's a very robust approach towards the foreign press. Some people say that only you can carry it off because you can take them on and you have the ability to take them on.

    Answer

    No. The next generation is doing this. I'm no longer writing thier replies, they are. The rules stay. You're wrong if you believe when I'm gone, all these things will be let loose. I think they understand the rules, what works and shat doesn't workl what needs to be changed. It's their choice because they have to live with the consequences.


    Notes

    (13) Some of the newspapers and publications owned by Murdoch's News Corp are The Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Far Eastern Economic Review, Dow Jones and the New York Post.

    (14) This quote has been ascribed to Goebbels, the Nazi Propaganda Minister, and to Vladimir Lenin.
    Last edited by Loh; 02-27-2011 at 12:07 AM.

  7. #4019
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Webb wins HSBC Women's Champions

    Feb 27, 2011

    By Jonathan Wong




    Golfer Karrie Webb of Australia holds the trophy after winning the HSBC Women's Champions golf tournament in Singapore. -- PHOTO: AFP


    KARRIE Webb has won the HSBC Women's Champions by a single stroke after shooting a three-under 69 for a 275 total.

    The veteran 36-year-old edged past overnight leader Japanese Chie Arimura (276), who had led by a single stroke going into the final round at the Tanah Merah Country Club.

    The seven-time Major winner earned US$210,000 (S$267,309) for her victory and claimed her 37th LPGA title of her career.

    Taiwanese world No 1 Tseng Ya-ni (278) was third at the US$1.4 million tournament at the Garden Course.

    Singapore's Christabel Goh finished last in the 63-woman field on 322.

  8. #4020
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Domestic helpers to attend water-conservation class

    The Straits Times

    Feb 27, 2011

    By Amanda Tan




    Trainer Woon Siew Lan showing one of the domestic helpers undergoing PUB Water Conservation Programme how to conserve water. -- ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN


    NEW and transfer maids at more than 10 maid agencies across the island will now have to attend a one-hour class on saving water.

    The call to get domestic workers involved is part of the PUB's water-conservation outreach programme for 2011, which was launched on Sunday by the Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor at City Square Mall.

    The pilot project - the first time that Singapore's national water agency is tapping domestic helpers - will see the PUB team up with some of Singapore's biggest maid agencies, which account for thousands of maids a year.

    The PUB hopes to get more agencies on board in the next couple of years.

    'I think it's a very tangible and very practical effort. It means that when the maid comes, I just have to reinforce some of the things she would have learnt from this training course and this makes it a lot easier to help them understand the need to save water, to adopt water-saving habits,' Dr Khor said.

    The course will be conducted in Bahasa Indonesia and English. Maids will be given handbooks and taught how to recycle water for different uses.

  9. #4021
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default River Safari's panda frenzy begins

    The Straits Times

    Feb 27, 2011

    All creature comforts will be provided when pandas are flown in from China next year

    By Lin Yang




    Mr Ang Cheng Chye, the River Safari's curator, and Dr Serene Oh, a veterinarian, at the China Conservation and Research Centre for the Giant Panda in Sichuan. They travelled to the centre last year to learn how to handle the two pandas when they arrive in Singapore next year, as well as how to conduct 'pairing up sessions' for the animals to maximise their potential for mating. -- PHOTO: BJORN OLESEN


    THE nitty-gritty of moving the two giant pandas from China to Singapore early next year has started in earnest.

    And Singapore Airlines will make sure it is 'a great way to fly' for the pandas. SIA signed on last September to transport the VIPs.

    A team of zookeepers and veterinarians from the Chinese city of Chengdu will accompany the duo.

    Details have emerged of the planning and logistics involved in making the trip comfortable for the pandas.

    Mr Ang Cheng Chye, the curator at River Safari, said individual custom-made crates will be used to move the bears to the airport in Chengdu.

    They will then be loaded onto a Singapore Airlines Boeing 747 freighter, where they will remain in their crates for the duration of the flight. An SIA spokesman estimated that the flight should take no more than eight hours.

  10. #4022
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Big boom in Little India

    The Straits Times

    Feb 27, 2011

    Influx of Indian expats and foreign workers drives growing community, fuelling businesses

    By Melissa Kok




    More and more businesses are owned by Indian PRs like Mr Renganathan, who runs a fashion shop with his wife. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE


    IN THE past five years, Little India has seen a 20 per cent growth in the number of shops and restaurants, as a growing Indian community here, bolstered by the influx of new Indian immigrants, drives up demand.

    Among these new establishments are vegetarian restaurants, goldsmiths and textile shops, owned by PRs and catering to both locals and foreigners.

  11. #4023
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Little Red Dot, IN in tie-ups for exclusive content

    The Straits Times

    Feb 27, 2011

    By Eisen Teo


    Little Red Dot school magazine.



    THERE is more to read in The Straits Times' weekly school magazines.

    Partnerships with four agencies will provide content exclusive to readers of Little Red Dot (LRD) and IN in primary and secondary schools respectively.

    Now linked to the two publications' mastheads are the Speak Good English Movement (SGEM), the British Council, National Library Board (NLB) and National Heritage Board (NHB) - selected for their 'special expertise' to enrich ST's schools programme, said ST associate editor Bertha Henson.

    These collaborations follow improvements made to both weeklies at the start of the year, with IN increasing its content from 16 to 20 pages, and an overhaul of 20-page LRD.

    Of the tie-ups, Ms Henson said: 'A love for reading, speaking English well, knowledge of science and heritage - these are all qualities we want our children to have.'

    The British Council will contribute learning content developed by its language specialists, and the NHB's archives on, say, famous national monuments will be mined.

  12. #4024
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Solved: Puzzle at Hakka clan house

    The Straits Times

    Feb 27, 2011

    Taiwanese scholar deciphers inscriptions on walls and pillars of 189-year-old building

    By Elgin Toh




    Mr Kang Ger-wen (left), with Mr Lai Ah Keow (centre), vice-president of Ying Fo Fui Kun, and Mr Charlie Lee, council member. -- ST PHOTO: TED CHEN


    FOR years, leaders at Singapore's oldest surviving Hakka clan association had no idea what some of the ancient carvings on the walls and pillars of their 189-year-old clan house meant.

    Then came a Taiwanese student from the National University of Singapore. He had a keen interest in old Chinese buildings and offered to try and decipher the inscriptions.

    After a four-month study, Mr Kang Ger-wen, 37, has unravelled the mystery behind the carvings at Ying Fo Fui Kun's 98, Telok Ayer Street building, much to the delight of the clan leaders.

    For example, carved above the entrance to the clan house, in an ancient script unreadable to most modern learners of the Chinese language, are the four words 'Qian He Wan Sun'.

    It is an ancient expression of a hope that one's descendants would succeed through studying hard.

    And a carving on the door frame that looks like a fish with a dragon's head was linked by Mr Kang to another ancient saying - 'the carp jumps through the dragon gate' - on making it through the notoriously difficult Chinese imperial examinations.

    Read the full story in The Sunday Times.

  13. #4025
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    Default French visitor impressed by Singapore's transport system

    Channel NewsAsia Posted: 27 February 2011 1605 hrs

    Mrs Lim Hwee Hua (in pink jacket) and Mr Thierry Mariani (closest to camera) taking in the view of the Marina Bay area (Picture courtesy of Ministry of Transport).


    SINGAPORE: French Secretary of State for Transport Thierry Mariani says he is impressed by Singapore's efficient transportation system.

    He said this during a two-day official visit here which started on Saturday.

    "It is indeed one of the most modern systems in the region and reflects Singapore's clear and forward-looking transport policies. I look forward to the continued valuable co-operation, exchange of views and ideas between France and Singapore in the area of transportation," he said.

    Singapore's Ministry of Transport said Mr Mariani's visit was a good opportunity for both countries to exchange views on transport issues and to explore further areas of co-operation.

    During his visit, Mr Mariani called on Minister in the Prime Minister's Office and Second Minister for Finance and Transport, Mrs Lim Hwee Hua.

    They exchanged views on transport developments and on enhancing bilateral transport cooperation such as in expanding aviation links.

    Mr Mariani visited the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore and toured the Singapore Changi Airport and PSA Pasir Panjang Container Terminal.

    He also visited the Kim Chuan Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Depot where he was briefed on Singapore's MRT system.

  14. #4026
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    Default Youth guidance centre launched

    Channel NewsAsia

    By Wayne Chan | Posted: 27 February 2011 2055 hrs


    Youth Exprez@Eunos


    SINGAPORE: Singapore's first multi-agency youth guidance centre to help youth-at-risk has been set up by the Northeast Community Development Council.

    Youth Exprez@Eunos said it aims to break the habit of youths wasting time loitering in void decks and malls.

    It said it even hopes to build future grassroots leaders.

    The new centre, run by the Student Advisory Centre (SAC), will work with schools and community partners to reach drop-outs and those on the verge of leaving school.

    Youths referred to the centre will get to pick mentors based on their preferences at a "bonding" camp.

    They will also be sent to take part in arts, cultural or sports activities based on their interests.

    One of the youths is 14-year-old Stephanie, who grew up in an orphanage as her parents could not afford to keep her.

    "My dream is to become an actress, and this place can help me by sending me to classes or engaging teachers to coach me. They will help me occupy my time and not get me into trouble," she said.

    Youth Exprez@Eunos executive director Trevor Xie said: "There are a lot of incentives to keep them committed to the programme.

    "For every two months of keeping to the programme -- by meeting 75 per cent attendance -- they get to go to places of interest such as Ski 360, or the Zoo or Singapore Discovery Centre".

    The centre hopes to reach at least 100 youths in its first year.

    It has already reached out to 64 youths and plans to take in 20 of them every two months.

    Northeast CDC has set aside S$200,000 as programme funding support for the centre.

  15. #4027
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    Default Portsdown memory lane...

    Channel NewsAsia

    By Hetty Musfirah Abdul Khamid | Posted: 27 February 2011 1634 hrs


    ST Kinetics at Portsdown Road.


    SINGAPORE: It used to be where Singapore's military vehicles were produced but come September, the building that houses defence company ST Kinetics at Portsdown Road will be demolished to make way for Singapore's new digital media hub - Mediapolis.

    Some of the buildings along Portsdown Road have been around since the colonial days.

    But together with other buildings that make up ST Kinetics, they will all soon just be a memory.

    For those with the company since it started in 1971, the site speaks volumes of how they toiled to ensure Singapore's defence.

    Mr Alex Teo, who's been with the company for 27 years, recalls one of the company's milestones.

    "When I joined the company in 1983 as a young engineer, I have been dreaming of the day we produce our own armoured fighting vehicles," Mr Teo said.

    "In those days, we were just doing maintenance, some upgrading and retrofitting -- but we have progressed.

    "And when we finally, designed, developed and manufactured the first indigenous armoured fighting vehicle Bionix in 1997, to me, it was a dream come true. In fact, I was the one who organised the roll-out ceremony."

    Today, the engineering workshop is empty. The workshop was said to be one of the most secretive places in Portsdown.

    That's because this was where engineers worked on prototypes of infantry fighting vehicles like the Bionix -- with the latest in line being the Terrex -- behind closed doors.

    ST Kinetics was also where the Warthog -- specially customised for the British forces for use in Afghanistan -- was manufactured.

    The area is making way for Mediapolis @One North that will occupy an area the size of some 20 football fields.

    Some 1,000 staff of ST Kinetics have been relocated to new premises at Jalan Boon Lay and Chin Bee Road.

    -CNA/wk

  16. #4028
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Singapore hits record 1,055,000 visitors for Jan

    The Straits Times

    Feb 28, 2011

    By Vanessa Jalleh


    The figure of 1,055,000 visitors is the highest ever recorded for the month of January. -- ST PHOTO: NURIA LING


    JANUARY 2011 saw a 16.2 per cent growth in international visitors. The figure of 1,055,000 visitors is the highest ever recorded for the month of January.

    Indonesia, China, Australia, Malaysia, and India were Singapore's top five visitor-generating markets for the period.

    They accounted for 55 per cent of total international visitor arrivals in January.

    Hong Kong, Thailand, and China registered the highest growth out of Singapore's top 15 International visitor arrivals markets.

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    Default Forbes Travel Guide to rate S'pore's hotels and spas

    Channel NewsAsia

    By Mustafa Shafawi | Posted: 28 February 2011 1509 hrs


    Some of Singapore's highrise hotels near the waterfront in Singapore



    SINGAPORE: Hotels and spas in Singapore will soon be rated by Forbes Travel Guide for the first time.

    The ratings are based on objective evaluations of more than 500 attributes at each rated property.

    Singapore is the fourth country to receive Forbes Travel Guide's Five-Star ratings, and the fourth city in Asia after Beijing, Hong Kong and Macau
    .

    Forbes Travel Guide said its ratings would allow travellers to Singapore to make more informed decisions for their trips.

    To achieve Five- and Four-Star status, properties must meet or exceed its bar-setting service standards, which are determined through an unannounced incognito service evaluation conducted by Forbes Travel Guide's professional inspectors.

    Forbes Travel Guide enters Singapore at a time when its tourism industry is delivering remarkable results.

    In 2010, Singapore surpassed its tourism receipts forecast with a record of S$18.8 billion, driven by its increased attractiveness to affluent tourists in Asia and an infrastructure built to meet growing demands for luxury by discerning travellers

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