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  1. #8365
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Singapore Food Festival will be on a roll this year

    Published on Jun 19, 2014 9:27 AM




    A pop-up store at Ion Orchard will be selling burgers filled with beef rendang or curried chicken during the festival. -- PHOTO: COURTESY OF CHEF DAMIAN D'SILVA




    Chef Balasundram Pillai promises a treat of diverse Indian food at Suvai, a carnival in Little India.




    Chinatown Food Street will be a one-stop destination for Chinese food that is hard to get at one place
    By: Chinatown Food Street. -- PHOTO: CHINATOWN FOOD STREET




    Buah Keluak Ice Cream will be offered on Nonya Mobile, a roving food truck, as part of this year's festivities for Singapore Food Festival. -- PHOTO: CHEF MALCOLM LEE




    Grilled Roulade Prata is a dish that will be served at Suvai, a carnival set up by the Indian Chefs and Culinary Association for the Singapore Food Festival. -- PHOTO: SUVAI




    Chicken Pongteh, a chicken stew with mushroom and potatoes, will be offered on Nonya Mobile, a roving food truck, as part of this year's festivities for Singapore Food Festival. -- PHOTO: CHEF KENNY CHAN


    By Aw Cheng Wei

    This year, the Singapore Food Festival is coming to you, and it is bringing new and old favourites.

    The Nonya Mobile, a food truck, will visit various parts of the island, including Ang Mo Kio Hub, Century Square and Vivo- City, to offer food tastings.

    The truck will carry popular dishes featured in previous editions of the festival, including Peranakan ones like buah keluak ice cream, satay, and chicken pong teh, a chicken stew with mushrooms and potatoes.

    This is part of this year's theme - A Walk Down Memory Lane - which relives the best memories of the festival, which is being held for the 21st year, said the Singapore Tourism Board in a statement.

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    Default Driving to Sports Hub? Buy parking ticket first

    Published on Jun 20, 2014 9:36 AM




    Aerial view of the Singapore Sports Hub under construction, on 29 April 2014. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

    By Chua Siang Yee

    THE Singapore Sports Hub has rolled out a new parking system to cope with the high turnouts expected for events at its arenas.

    Pre-sold parking tickets will be available for events at the 55,000-seater National Stadium, so motorists can be sure of having a parking space when they arrive.

    Holders of the tickets - costing $10.70 each - will be ushered to designated carparks at the Sports Hub. The tickets are valid for 24 hours from 7am on the event day.

    Even so, Mr Eric Tan, managing director of the Sports Hub's facilities management firm DTZ, urged event-goers to use public transport

  3. #8367
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Whampoa's descendant donates rare whale tusk

    The narwhal tusk, which is at least 200 years old, will be displayed at the new Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum.



    Published on Jun 20, 2014 6:36 AM




    Madam Hoo Miew Oon (left) and her husband Yap Boh Lee (right) with the rare narwhal tusk that was donated to the new Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum on Wednesday. It had belonged to her great-grandfather Whampoa Hoo Ah Kay. -- PHOTO: DESMOND LUI FOR THE STRAITS TIMES





    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...20_424491e.jpg

    Madam Hoo Miew Oon and her husband Yap Boh Lee with the rare narwhal tusk that was donated to the new Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum on Wednesday. It had belonged to her great-grandfather Whampoa Hoo Ah Kay (above). -- PHOTO: DESMOND LUI FOR THE STRAITS TIMES


    By David Ee

    The sword-like tusk of a whale known as the ''unicorn of the ocean'' will take pride of place at the new Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum when it opens next year.

    The narwhal tusk, which is at least 200 years old, had belonged to businessman ''Whampoa'' Hoo Ah Kay, one of Singapore's pioneers of the 1800s.

    On Wednesday, his greatgranddaughter Hoo Miew Oon, 79, donated the family heirloom to the museum, formerly known as the Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research.

    The 2.7m-long tusk, which when placed upright is as tall as the tallest human in history, had been given to Whampoa in the 1860s by the Russian government, for whom he was consul in Singapore.

  4. #8368
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Enjoy Sports Hub for free

    No charges from June 30 to July 31


    Published on Jun 20, 2014 10:23 AM




    National swimmer Zach Ong getting a taste of the state-of-the-art facilities at the OCBC Aquatic Centre on 19 May 2014. -- PHOTO: ST FILE


    By Chua Siang Yee

    FROM June 30 to July 31, the public will be able to enjoy several of the world-class facilities at the Singapore Sports Hub - without forking out a cent.

    Both the training and competition swimming pools at the OCBC Aquatic Centre will be open for public use. The diving pool will also be open, but only to trained divers.

    The OCBC Arena, which has six indoor courts, will be configured to host four popular community sports: badminton, basketball, volleyball and netball.

    In addition, two outdoor hard courts will be host to basketball. One more court will host either netball or futsal on different days.

  5. #8369
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Sports Hub: How to get there

    With multiple events slated for next weekend, organisers are getting the word out on how members of the public can access the Sports Hub.

    Sports Hub access map <div>Please enable Javascript to watch this video</div>




    SINGAPORE: With 30,000 people expected to converge at the Singapore Sports Hub for multiple events next weekend, organisers on Thursday (June 19) outlined their plans on how the public can access the venue.

    The Sports Hub is easily accessible by various transport modes. Three MRT stations - Stadium, Mountbatten and Kallang - are within walking distance. Seven bus services and three taxi stands provide more options. Major expressways also feed into the multiple entry and exit points which serve the hub.

    Those who plan to drive to the new National Stadium when there is an event happening there should remember to buy their parking tickets first. Without one, you will not be able to park at the Stadium.

    "During event days in the National Stadium, no parking is available unless you buy a pre-purchased parking lot," said Mr Eric Tan, Managing Director of DTZ. "You need to go to our website to purchase the parking lot. When you arrive, display your decal and we will guide you to your lot. If you do not pre-purchase, there will be no lots for anyone who tries to find a parking lot."

    The pre-purchase is only for some 800 lots located within the National Stadium. You still have more than 3,000 other parking lots to choose from at the Sports Hub, the Singapore Indoor Stadium and Kallang Leisure Park Mall.

    Members of the public can purchase the pre-sold parking on a first-come-first-served basis at www.sportshubtix.sg or at all Singapore Post outlets. Each ticket costs $10.70 and is valid from 7am of the event day till 7am the next morning.

    Organisers have also printed a guide map to inform the public about how to access the Sports Hub. 50,000 copies will be distributed to residents living around the Stadium, and more copies will be made available island-wide.

    There is also a hotline (6653-8900) and website (www.sportshub.com.sg) where similar information is available. For the whole of July, members of the public can try out the facilities in the hub free of charge - the free trials will cover various indoor games as well as swimming and kayaking.

    - CNA/xy

  6. #8370
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    Default Game on, all systems go at National Stadium

    Game on, all systems go at National Stadium

    Published on Jun 21, 2014 6:30 AM





    -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND LIM







    By Chua Siang Yee And Toh Ting Wei



    The National Stadium, for so long the cauldron of Singapore sporting glories, is back in business. The 55,000-seater complex re-opens its doors today when it hosts the weekend's Rugby World Club 10s competition.


    While the Sports Hub's official opening ceremony will take place only next year, many are relishing the resumption of the National Stadium as a functional sporting arena after six years of planning and construction.


    Said Mr Low Teo Ping, president of Singapore Rugby Union, the sanctioning body of the rugby event: ''It is a tremendous feeling, and we are very proud. A lot of people are excited about it, and anxious about the new National Stadium.


    ''We believe the facilities are impressive and ready. It is game on, all systems go.''

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    Default Singapore inter-agency taskforce responds to US report on human trafficking

    Taskforce says it ‘remains of the view that the US needs to adopt a more objective methodology’ in future reports

    Published: June 21, 2:59 PM






    SINGAPORE - The Singapore Inter-agency Taskforce on Trafficking in Persons (TIP) today (June 21) issued a statement in response to the US Department of State’s TIP Report 2014. The statement is as follows:



    Singapore Inter-agency Taskforce on Trafficking in Persons’ comments on US TIP Report 2014.


    The Singapore Inter-agency Taskforce on Trafficking in Persons (TIP) notes that the US Department of State’s TIP Report 2014 has placed Singapore in Tier 2 band, according to the minimum standards spelt out in their Trafficking Victims Protection Act. We will be studying the report in detail.


    The Taskforce has made significant progress in implementing the National Plan of Action to combat TIP, through a “4P” strategy of Prevention, Prosecution, Protection and Partnership. We will continue to work with partners to raise public awareness, facilitate victim reporting, refine the investigation processes and enhance the provision of care to victims. One key priority for the Taskforce is to work with Member of Parliament, Mr Christopher de Souza, on a Private Member’s Bill on Prevention of Human Trafficking, to be tabled in Parliament by this year. This dedicated TIP legislation aims to empower agencies with the necessary powers and levers to deal with TIP crimes more effectively.


    While we acknowledge and welcome the United States’ efforts to produce an annual report to highlight this important global issue, we remain of the view that the United States needs to adopt a more objective methodology in future editions of its TIP Report. This will ensure that a consistent, transparent, and measurable standard is applied to all countries, taking into account the different legal structures and domestic contexts of countries covered in the report.

  8. #8372
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Singapore ‘still not meeting minimum standards to curb human trafficking’

    Singapore ‘still not meeting minimum standards to curb human trafficking’


    Published: June 21, 4:03 AM

    SINGAPORE — The Republic still falls short of the minimum international standards for the elimination of human trafficking, although it has made significant efforts in this area, said the latest Trafficking In Persons (TIP) report released yesterday by the United States Department of State.

    Singapore remains in Tier 2 of a four-tier system, where Tier 1 represents countries whose governments fully comply with the minimum international standards of protecting migrant workers from forced labour or other forms of human trafficking.

    The report — which has drawn forceful rebuttals from the Singapore Government in the past for “misrepresentation” — noted that stringent sentences were imposed on two convicted *** traffickers, but no labour traffickers were prosecuted or convicted.

    While the Government has developed an improved mechanism for case referral among government, civil society and foreign embassies, it “continued to face difficulties” in identifying and building evidence in cases. “After investigating 294 new labour cases and 53 ***-trafficking cases, the Government substantiated 24 ***-trafficking cases and one labour-trafficking case,” the report stated.

    It said the authorities here might have “failed to recognise the elements of trafficking among individuals who reportedly migrated to Singapore willingly or who did not experience physical confinement or abuse” and that the Government and civil societies continued to disagree on whether specific cases amounted to trafficking.

    And while the new case referral process introduced in August last year has improved coordination between stakeholders, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and foreign embassies said “a lack of transparency regarding ongoing cases remained a problem”. The Government also did not “consistently ensure” social-service professionals were present during screening interviews with victims, although NGOs reported an improvement in this area.

    Singapore has mostly been placed in Tier 2 since the US began publishing the annual report in 2001 but, in 2010, it slipped into the Tier 2 Watchlist category for countries that have a significant number of trafficking victims and which failed to show efforts to combat the situation. That year, the Singapore Inter-Agency Taskforce on Trafficking in Persons was formed. The task force — comprising several government agencies — launched a National Plan of Action in 2012.

    In November, Member of Parliament Christopher de Souza is expected to table draft legislation to prevent human trafficking in Parliament.
    Last edited by Loh; 06-21-2014 at 09:04 AM.

  9. #8373
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    Default Explore the new sports hub

    From June 30 to July 31, the public will be able to enjoy several of the world-class facilities at the Singapore Sports Hub - without forking out a cent. Those interested can also look forward to venue tours at the $1.3 billion, 35ha facility, plus a new parking system to cope with the high turnouts expected for events at various arenas.

  10. #8374
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    Default Under One Roof


    Game on, all systems go at National Stadium
    The National Stadium, for so long the cauldron of Singapore sporting glories, re-opens its doors today.


    Driving to Sports Hub? Buy parking ticket first
    The Singapore Sports Hub has rolled out a new parking system to cope with the high turnouts expected for events at its arenas.


    Enjoy Sports Hub for free
    From June 30 to July 31, the public will be able to enjoy several of the world-class facilities at the Singapore Sports Hub - without forking out a cent.


    Navratilova to play at Sports Hub
    THE first name for the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Legends event in Singapore has been revealed - and it is as big as they come.

    Win a chance to be an official photographer at the rugby World Club 10s at Sports Hub
    Calling all rugby fans and photography enthusiasts - this is your chance to get in on the action when the Rugby World Club 10s comes to town.


    Football: Singapore-Malaysia match at Sports Hub postponed; FAS to announce new dates
    The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) has called off the much-anticipated Aug 8 clash between Singapore and Malaysia, saying that it needs more time to prepare for the event.

    Sports Hub facilities 'will meet deadline'
    THE Singapore Sports Hub saw the completion of its first sports arena yesterday, while the authorities and event organisers remain confident that the other facilities will be ready in time for slated events next month.


    Football: Juventus to play Singapore Selection side at Sports Hub on Aug 16
    Italian football club Juventus will play a Singapore Selection side at the new National Stadium on Aug 16.


    SMRT secures 80% occupancy for Sports Hub mall
    IN A nod to the National Stadium, the Sports Hub mall, which starts opening for business from the second half of next month, was yesterday named Kallang Wave.

    Floorball record for Sports Hub event
    A RECORD number of teams will take part in next month's World University Floorball Championship (WUFC), which will be held at the Singapore Sports Hub's OCBC Arena from June 18-22.

    Mobile deal reached for Sports Hub
    WHEN the Sports Hub makes its grand debut with global events next month


    Sports hub ties up with insurer
    THE local sports sponsorship scene still lags behind that of countries like the United States and China but national agency Sport Singapore aims to close that gap in the next five years.

    Sports Hub to host Fina event
    DIVING fans in Singapore can expect three days of world-class action in October when the Republic hosts the Fina Diving Grand Prix for the first time.

    Singapore Marathon route may include Sports Hub
    THE Singapore Marathon will continue to run under the banner of Standard Chartered Bank for another three years, but the organisers are promising a different flavour, starting with this year's race on Dec 7.


    Rugby: Top French side Biarritz to play in World Club 10s at Sports Hub
    Top French rugby outfit Biarritz Olympique are the latest team to confirm their participation at the World Club 10s championship in Singapore.

    Sports Hub can help S'pore athletes find own voices
    IT'S 1956. It's Melbourne. The runner is in his early 20s, he is born in an Indian village, his English is almost non-existent, this Olympics is his first. The runner is a nobody searching to be somebody. Once, the runner didn't even know what the 400m was - one round, they told him - but now he's intent on mastering it.


    IDA tells telcos to have mobile services at Sports Hub ready by mid-June
    SINGAPORE'S telco regulator has directed SingTel, StarHub and M1 to roll out mobile services at the Sports Hub by mid-June when the building would be completed.

  11. #8375
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Works by NUS industrial design students gain market traction

    The works by the industrial design students from NUS have gone beyond being a prototype. Photo: Ernest Chua


    By Paul Lim
    Published: June 23, 4:04 AM


    SINGAPORE — Nearly a month into his volunteering stint at the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Singapore, student Eason Chow Wai Tung has observed how caretakers sacrifice sleep due to time spent turning and moving patients, who cannot move on their own, for at least eight to 10 times in the night to relieve bed discomfort.

    This prompted Mr Chow, 25, to put what he learnt as an industrial design student at the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) School of Design and Environment to good use — he set out to create a device that could move a patient in a safe, efficient and inexpensive way. “The solution was always about a big bed (with) many complicated mechanisms ... The patients’ rooms I visited are generally smaller, so (it’s not possible to have) such a big bed.”

    The result is Flipod, a compact inflation system that can be strapped onto one’s back to relieve respiratory and bed discomfort in non-ambulant patients. Mr Chow’s graduation project in collaboration with the Singapore General Hospital’s Department of Physiotherapy was fully funded by NUS’ Medical Engineering Research and Commercialisation Initiative, which aims to introduce innovative medical devices to the market. It is currently undergoing a patent-application process.

    Flipod is among several projects created by NUS’ Division of Industrial Design students that have gone beyond being a prototype to gaining traction in the commercial market.

    For example, graduating students Vick Cai, Sylvia Ang and Goh Hong have raised US$15,041 (S$18,800) through crowd-funding site Indiegogo in only three months to manufacture their creation, Keyper, a flat leather key holder that fits comfortably in a pocket, for sale. The project was part of the university’s Launchpad scheme, which requires students to launch their designs for sale or crowd-funding. So far, Keyper has received 350 orders from 255 funders, with 70 per cent of buyers coming from outside Singapore.

    Another creation that has hit the market is Crinkle, a porcelain dish made using fabric instead of plastic as the “mould” to give it a unique texture. Created by second-year student Lee Han Xi, 21, Crinkle retails for S$245 on online store Haystakt.

    Asked whether she felt the Singapore market was ready to embrace local design, Ms Lee said: “Artisanal products are very new, but have gained popularity in recent years. I think it’s challenging to reach out to the local market as it is very small so, probably, people overseas can appreciate such designs more.”

    Associate professor Yen Ching Chiuan, NUS’ Head of Division of Industrial Design, said: “Industrial design is about making observations and identifying the fundamental problem. It is important as, many times, we think some situations are problems but, actually, they are not. As industrial designers, we see things from a designer’s eye to provide unique solutions to industry problems.”

    Through the school’s platforms such as Making Make for artisanal products such as Crinkle, students are provided with a proper environment and trained to take ownership of their work, he added.

  12. #8376
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Sports Hub a ‘game changer’ for Singapore sport

    The Blues and Brumbies served up a thriller. Photo: DON WONG


    Auckland Blues captain Piri Weepu lifts the World Club 10s trophy after...
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    The Auckland Blues (in dark blue shirts) and Brumbies (in white and...
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    Despite delays and sandy pitch, National Stadium gets thumbs up at World Club 10s


    By Low Lin Fhoong
    Published: June 23, 4:04 AM

    SINGAPORE — The dust had barely settled on the S$1.33 billion, 35-hectare mega sports facility in Kallang, with debris and loose cables still visible as the 55,000-seater National Stadium staged the inaugural World Club 10s rugby championship, its first sports event, over the weekend.

    But for the 10,888 fans who turned out yesterday to watch the eight professional club sides, the kinks did not matter as they witnessed the Auckland Blues of New Zealand claim their first 10s title in Singapore with a 10-5 golden-point victory over Australia’s Brumbies in double extra time.

    Giving the two-day tournament’s first year in Singapore a “10 out of 10” rating, Jon Phelps, managing director of the event’s organiser Carinat Sports Marketing, gave the Sports Hub — it also hosted the TYR 2nd South-east Asia Swimming Championships and World University Floorball Championships last week — top marks as it aims to build on the next two editions here.

    “This will be a game changer for sport in Singapore and Asia. We didn’t have any expectations as it’s been eight years since a major rugby event was held in Singapore,” said Phelps.

    “The players and clubs all want to come back. There was a lot of trepidation because this is a new event but it’s been a fantastic opportunity for us. We are going to be here for a few years. Can we have more people here? Yes of course, and more sponsors too. But we have done everything we wanted for the first year, so that’s a 10 out of 10 for me.”

    A concern had been the National Stadium’s pitch, which uses the Desso GrassMaster — a combination of synthetic fibres woven into natural grass to make it more durable — with sand clouds kicked up during the matches.

    “(I) probably needed a beach towel!” joked Blues captain Piri Weepu, who was in the New Zealand All Blacks side that won the 2011 World Cup. “For a field that’s come together in a short period of time, we had to just adapt and just play.”

    But it did not dampen the experience for the spectators in the stadium’s red-and-white-themed stands, including psychology undergraduate Siti Rasyidah who was with friends.
    “This is pretty impressive. The stadium is really big and I like the open concept,” said Siti, 20. “I would definitely come back as it’s always nice to watch rugby live.”

    Added National Serviceman Hakim Hardi, who plays for Singapore’s national under-20 side: “The stadium has lived up to the hype as it’s really beautiful. I hope to see the Super Rugby League teams from New Zealand, South Africa and Australia and England here.”

    Singapore Rugby Union (SRU) president Low Teo Ping is aiming for one rugby event to be held at the Sports Hub once a month, with the calendar to include a match between the Maori All Blacks and Asia Pacific Dragons in November, while a Singapore Selection side will play a yet-to-be-confirmed visiting team.

    Plans are underway to bring in the Super Rugby League — the top club tournament featuring leading sides from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa — to Singapore in 2016, with the Dragons as Asia’s representatives. The SRU is also bidding to host a leg of the Sevens World Series when the International Rugby Union’s council meets here in October.

    “It’s a great world-class stadium that matches a great event. That is a winning combination,” said Low. “It is definitely a great rugby experience for the players and fans and it’s been a long time since we had something like that here.”

    Yesterday’s final match between two of the sport’s most successful Super Rugby sides served up a thriller.

    A try from Conrad Hoffman gave the Brumbies a 5-0 half-time lead, but Tom McCartney levelled matters at 5-5 for the Blues with his first try of the tournament from a line-out to force the match into extra-time, where Blues’ Jackson Willison scored off a mad scramble near the line to spark off celebrations in the stands and sidelines.

    “A lot of teams don’t know this format of rugby, it’s a hybrid of the 15s and 7s game which is not as fast as sevens but slower than 15s,” said Weepu. “We would definitely love to come back. The boys were stoked to have the opportunity to be part of this event in Singapore. I’m also happy to be the first person to score a try in the tournament!”

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    Default Fighting leukaemia with the body's own immune system

    Published on Jun 24, 2014 12:58 PM



    An image of a cancer cell. -- PHOTO: A*STAR


    By Linette Lai

    SINGAPORE - Scientists have found a way of targeting cancer cells that uses the body's own immune system, which could hold the key to more effective leukaemia treatment in the future.

    The team from A*Star's Singapore Immunology Network found that certain lipids inside cancer cells trigger a response from a specific group of white blood cells. These white blood cells then kill cancerous cells, limiting the spread of cancer.

    Typically, leukaemia is treated using chemotherapy to kill cancer cells. The patient is then given a stem cell transplant to restore healthy blood cells.

    "But current treatment methods run the risk of failure due to re-growth of residual leukaemia cells that survive after stem cell transplants," said Dr Lucia Mori, the principal investigator from the network.

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    Default NTUC FairPrice and FairPrice Foundation pledge S$5m as SEA Games sponsor



    (From left) NTUC FairPrice CEO Seah Kian Peng, NTUC FairPrice Group CEO Tan Kian Chew, Ng Ser Miang, Chairman of NTUC FairPrice and FairPrice Foundation, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Lawrence Wong, Richard Seow, SINGSOC chairman of the 28th SEA Games sponsorship and marketing advisory sub-committee, Sport Singapore CEO Lim Teck Yin, and Toh Boon Yi, Sport Singapore Chief, Strategic Development & Marketing Group at the sponsorship signing at FairPrice Xtra. Photo: SINGSOC


    By Low Lin Fhoong

    -

    Published: June 25, 4:03 AM

    SINGAPORE — NTUC FairPrice and FairPrice Foundation have signed on as the first Tier 1 sponsor of the 28th South-east Asian Games, pledging S$5 million in what is the biggest sponsorship deal that the Singapore South-east Asian Games Organising Committee (SINGSOC) has signed.

    Singapore is hosting the biennial regional event after a 22-year absence and about 4,900 athletes will compete next June 5-16 in 36 sports at venues across Marina, Kallang and Expo.

    The partnership will see FairPrice Foundation contributing S$2 million in cash, while NTUC FairPrice will provide S$3 million value-in-kind sponsorship to the Games. The cash sponsorship will be used for SEA Games-related activities, while in-kind sponsorship will see NTUC FairPrice providing its house-brand products such as water and snacks during the Games.

    The sponsorship of the Games, which is one of the SG50 events celebrating the Republic’s Golden Jubilee next year, is NTUC FairPrice and FairPrice Foundation’s biggest contribution to sports to date.

    They had previously donated over S$500,000 to the 2009 Asian Youth Games and S$150,000 for sports scholarships for Singapore’s Youth Olympic Games medallists in 2010. More recently, they committed more than S$1.6 million over two years to ActiveSG, an initiative to get Singaporeans to play sports and live a healthy lifestyle.

    “We want to be a part of Singapore’s 50th anniversary and we believe in the value of sports … it helps us connect emotionally with Singaporeans and our customers,” said Mr Ng Ser Miang, chairman of NTUC FairPrice and FairPrice Foundation at the sponsorship announcement at FairPrice Xtra at Nex yesterday.

    “Beyond donating money and value in kind (sponsorship), with 120 outlets and 160 convenience stores, we want to go into community engagement and we want Singaporeans to support the SEA Games, and lobby Singaporeans to support Team Singapore athletes during the SEA Games.”

    SINGSOC has targeted S$50 million in cash and in-kind sponsorship for the 2015 SEA Games, and Sport Singapore chief executive officer Lim Teck Yin said in April that they had reached 50 per cent of their goal.

    Said Mr Richard Seow, chairman of SINGSOC’s sponsorship and marketing advisory sub-committee: “We’re working on it (the S$50 million target) and it’s achievable ... We’re still in some conversations and over the next couple of weeks, we will have a few exciting announcements to make. Corporate Singapore is our target, but we’re also looking further afield and we’ll like to start engaging the small and medium enterprises.”

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    Default US-Singapore FTA paves way for TPP negotiation: PM Lee

    Published on Jun 25, 2014 1:14 PM


    Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong gives a speech during a reception to celebrate the 10th anniversary of US-Singapore FTA at the US Chamber of Commerce, in Washington, DC, USA, on June 24, 2014. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN

    The US-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (USSFTA) has achieved not just economic but also the strategic objectives of furthering the United States' presence in Asia, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said at a reception in Washington DC as he marked the 10th anniversary of the historic trade agreement.

    Below is his full speech:

    The USSFTA (US-Singapore Free Trade Agreement) began on a dark and stormy night, literally, because Bill Clinton and my predecessor Mr Goh Chok Tong had agreed to a round of midnight golf in Brunei, after dinner at the 2000 Apec Summit. And the game was almost washed away by a thunderstorm, but the skies cleared and they did have a good game which lasted until three in the morning.

    This was after the US elections, it was a lame duck president, and George W Bush had already been elected as the next President.

    Nevertheless, President Clinton agreed to start the FTA negotiations with Singapore and the next administration came in and continued the negotiations and carried them through to fruition. And under the Bush Administration, we negotiated a high-standard agreement.

    For example, Singapore granted Qualifying Full Bank licences to American banks, which enabled Citibank to expand in Singapore in particular, and it's something which we have not since offered to any other FTA partners; although, I may not be telling a secret to say that, several have asked.

    And on the American side, America granted us duty-free access for all our exports to America from Singapore. And the USSFTA came into effect in 2004.

    Benefits of the USSFTA

    The FTA has promoted trade and investments between our two countries. The volume of trade has grown: whether it's consumer products like iPhones, whether it's Raoul shirts from Singapore or Prima Taste spices. But also serious stuff, equipment like oil rigs, or oil drilling rigs, used in rescue operations after the Deepwater Horizon accident in the Gulf of Mexico.

    By 2012, total US investments in Singapore had exceeded the volume in any other Asia-Pacific country, including much bigger ones like Japan and Australia, while Singapore companies have supported about 40,000 jobs in the US.

    For example, Keppel AmFELS, which manufactures equipment for the offshore and marine industry, is currently one of the largest employers in South Texas with close to 2,500 workers and the CEO is here today.

    But the USSFTA goes beyond economics in order to achieve strategic objectives. It's deepened the US' engagement of the region; as you've heard, it was the precursor which led to other US FTAs: with Korea, with Australia, and now negotiating the TPP.

    It's enhanced America's longstanding presence in the Asia-Pacific and it's caused other regional countries to sit up and to take note, and to think how they too could deepen their relationship with the US. Because if Singapore decided to do it, presumably we must have concluded there was some sense in the [garbled].

    Beyond the USSFTA, our broader bilateral relations between Singapore and America have thrived. We have a Strategic Framework Agreement, the SFA, between our two countries which anchors our security relations, and Singapore for our part we're happy to host American warships and airplanes.

    And now many more Singaporeans study and work in the US, and many Americans are coming to Singapore to do the same. And long may this continue.

    Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

    The USSFTA is not the only way Singapore has fostered links between the two sides of the Pacific Ocean. Because soon after concluding the USSFTA, Singapore entered into another FTA, with small partners this time: with Brunei, with New Zealand and with Chile, in order to form the P4 (Pacific 4) group, a small, high-quality FTA which was designed to be a nucleus which would in time grow into something significant in the Asia Pacific. And that has in fact happened, because the P4 has indeed become the starting point of the TPP, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which is now being negotiated between America and other Asia-Pacific partners. I say now being negotiated but what we secretly hope is that it's now nearing completion of negotiations. And I think there's a good chance of it's happening this year.

    The TPP will also be a high standard agreement, and will be a game-changer. Because economically it will integrate 40 per cent of the world's GDP, and one third of the world's trade. It's almost as large as the TTIP, which is a friendly arrangement on the other ocean across the Atlantic, between America and Europe, and it will be bigger than NAFTA. It will create 700,000 new jobs in the US by 2025: 10 times the number under the Korea-US FTA.

    All parties will benefit substantially under the TPP. There will be strong protection for intellectual property to support innovation, there'll be rules to support e-commerce, which will benefit many technology companies, whether it's Google, eBay, IBM, HP, or many other new ones, and also benefit small businesses. There'll be improved market access, which will mean cheaper products for consumers, and more export opportunities for producers.

    Strategically, too, the TPP is vital to the US' international standing and engagement in the Asia Pacific. The US is and will remain a Pacific Power and President Obama has committed himself and his administration, and the US I hope beyond his administration, to the "rebalance"¯ to Asia. Singapore and many Asia-Pacific countries welcome this, because America's presence in Asia has enabled regional countries to prosper and underpinned peace and stability throughout the region. But the rebalance is not just America's military presence. It must span a broad front - cultural exchanges, tourism links, people-to-people ties, and also economic cooperation.

    The strategic landscape in Asia is changing very rapidly. China is the top trading partner for many Asian countries, including many allies of the US. The Asian economies are integrating with one another, not only with China but amongst themselves. For example, Asean is forming the Asean Economic Community, which will be completed by the end of next year, and is negotiating the RCEP, which is an FTA encompassing China, Japan, Korea, Australia, NZ, and also India, plus the Asean countries. So for the US to engage in the region, and to expand its influence and its relevance to Asian countries, trade policy has to be a key instrument. There has to be substance; if I may say, there has to be beef in the hamburger. The TPP is the most important deal on the table or anywhere on the horizon in this respect.

    Negotiating the TPP is a complex undertaking. Because it goes well beyond the usual trade staple of reducing tariffs and even non-tariff barriers. The parties have to make some very difficult decisions, and consider how far and how fast they are willing to go in areas with major domestic and political ramifications. Therefore the negotiations have been very demanding and we in Singapore alone, we have been privileged to have hosted three consecutive ministerial meetings since last December. Perhaps if we have to host another ministerial, we will organise a midnight golf game!

    But nevertheless we are almost there, and I'm encouraged by President Obama's promise to constructively resolve the remaining issues and I think we should be able to conclude it this year.

    Ratifying the TPP of course is a further step in getting it to become a reality, and it's an exercise in itself. It's important that in the US the TPP has strong bipartisan and public support. Because what is at stake is not just the immediate gains to the US economy, but your long-term engagement in the Asia-Pacific. Your commitment, your demonstration that when you talk about rebalancing, when you talk about developing the ties, you're also bringing substance to the table and you're able to deepen the relationship in ways which go beyond words and speeches, to trade, to investments, to engagements, to interdependence, and to a substantial and constructive presence of the US in the region.

    Therefore I hope that the Administration and Congress will work together to obtain trade promotion authority for the administration, and for Congress eventually to ratify the TPP. And I know the business community is very influential, and Mr (Myron) Brilliant was explaining to me that the building here was located here because the president 100 years ago decided it was good to have business presence close to the White House to influence events. And I'm sure the business community will lend your hand and your voices to support the TPP and its ratification.

    Conclusion

    The US has always promoted an open and inclusive rules-based framework for international cooperation. And that's what has made the US a great world power and one which is welcome and which is accepted as a benevolent and constructive force in many parts of the world. It is also what motivated the US to sign an FTA with a small island nation 10 years ago. I hope it will also persuade the US to conclude and ratify the TPP, to reinforce its engagement in the Asia-Pacific, and to consolidate your position as a Pacific power in the 21st century.

  16. #8380
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Gardens by the Bay welcomes 10 millionth visitor

    Published on Jun 22, 2014 7:48 PM





    Mr Kho Su Kiak (second from right, in plain blue shirt) and his family in the Cloud Forest,with Gardens by the Bay Chairman, Mrs Theresa Foo (extreme right of photo)and Chief Executive Officer Dr Kiat W. Tan (extreme left of photo). Gardens by the Bay welcomed its 10-millionth visitor on Sunday, a week ahead of its second anniversary on June 29, 2014. -- PHOTO: GARDENS BY THE BAY


    By Amelia Teng

    SINGAPORE - Gardens by the Bay welcomed its 10-millionth visitor on Sunday, a week ahead of its second anniversary on 29 June 2014.

    Mr Kho Su Kiak from Sarawak, Malaysia, who is visiting his daughter and her family in Singapore, was surprised with a gift as he entered the Flower Dome.

    "This is such an unexpected surprise! It was my daughter's idea to bring my wife and I to Gardens by the Bay as we both enjoy nature," he said.

    "It's wonderful to see so many beautiful and interesting plants that we don't get to see back home. The Supertrees are unique. And I like the cactus too," said the 73-year-old.

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    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Zouk and Singapore Flyer: Perfect for each other?

    Nightspot needs new venue and ferris wheel attraction needs to turn a good profit


    Published on Jun 22, 2014 7:09 AM





    The Singapore Flyer, South Beach and Old Kallang Airport are some areas Zouk founder Lincoln Cheng (above) considered moving the Jiak Kim Street club to. Last Friday, the club launched an online appeal for a lease extension. -- PHOTOS: LIM YAOHUI FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES, ST FILE





    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...22_429136e.jpg

    The Singapore Flyer (above), South Beach and Old Kallang Airport are some areas Zouk founder Lincoln Cheng considered moving the Jiak Kim Street club to. Last Friday, the club launched an online appeal for a lease extension. -- PHOTOS: LIM YAOHUI FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES, ST FILE





    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...RS_429137e.jpg

    The Singapore Flyer, South Beach and Old Kallang Airport (above) are some areas Zouk founder Lincoln Cheng considered moving the Jiak Kim Street club to. Last Friday, the club launched an online appeal for a lease extension. -- PHOTOS: LIM YAOHUI FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES, ST FILE


    By Joyce Lim

    Both are modern Singapore icons whose futures are hanging in the balance.

    One is facing financial woes and looking for a buyer to turn a good profit; the other is facing the threat of closure when its current lease expires. Could the Singapore Flyer provide a new home for Zouk, answering both their problems?

    One man who thinks so is 67-year-old Lincoln Cheng, the founder of Zouk nightclub who has set his sights on the ferris wheel - one of the largest in the world.

    "The location is just on the fringe of the Central Business District," he told The Sunday Times in an exclusive interview.

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