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Thread: Singapore Also Can
04-14-2013, 10:07 PM #7005
Trail of the 77-year-old Tiong Bahru estate launched by the National Heritage Board
Published on Apr 14, 2013
By Melody Zaccheus
A trail taking visitors through the untold stories and historical gems of the 77-year-old Tiong Bahru estate was launched by the National Heritage Board (NHB) on Sunday morning.
Featuring 10 markers, spanning 2.5km, the 11th NHB trail includes stops at the Tiong Bahru Market with a history tracing back to 1945, philanthropist Tan Tock Seng's grave and Singapore's first Monkey God temple which was founded in 1920.
Grassroots advisor and Member of Parliament for Tanjong Pagar GRC Indranee Thurai Rajah said the heritage trail is a platform for members of the community to better understand and appreciate the estate's rich heritage.
"Whether you are a resident who has been living in the estate for decades, or someone who has moved in recently, this trail offers a greater insight into the history of Tiong Bahru, charting its milestones though the war and commemorating memorable sites that hold a significant place in the hearts of many."
A trail taking visitors through the untold stories and historical gems of the 77-year-old Tiong Bahru estate was launched by the National Heritage Board (NHB) on Sunday morning. -- ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG
04-14-2013, 10:25 PM #7006
New heritage trail launched at Tiong Bahru
The Horse-Shoe Block. Photo: Don Wong
Seng Poh Garden and Dancing Girl Sculpture. Photo: Don Wong
Monkey God Temple. Photo: Don Wong
Trail will offer insight into the area’s unique pre-war and post-war architecture
ByWong Wei Han
6 hours 5 min ago
SINGAPORE — Like many places in Tiong Bahru, Block 78, which straddles Moh Guan Terrace and Guan Chuan Street, embodies a part of Singapore’s history.
Built between 1939 and 1940, it houses the first air raid shelter in a public housing project.
The “horseshoe block” — nicknamed after its unique U-shape — and its wartime shelter are now part of the Tiong Bahru Heritage Trail, launched yesterday by the National Heritage Board (NHB).
Ten landmarks in the area — one of Singapore’s oldest housing estates dating back to the 1930s — have been selected as markers of the NHB’s 11th heritage trail, including the grave of Singapore pioneer Tan Tock Seng at Outram Road, the 93-year-old Monkey God Temple along Eng Hoon Street and Tiong Bahru Market, which dates back to 1945.
The trail will also offer insight into the area’s unique pre-war and post-war architecture.
Ms Thangamma Karthigesu, the NHB’s Director of Education and Outreach, said the research and selection process began at the end of the third quarter of last year.
Speaking at the trail’s launch ceremony, Senior Minister of State (Law and Education) and Member of Parliament for Tanjong Pagar GRC Indranee Rajah said: “The trail offers a unique insight into the history of this special neighbourhood, charting its milestones through the war and commemorating memorable sites that hold a significant place in the hearts of many.”
The new trail is also the first to have guided tours, offered once a month by volunteer Tiong Bahru residents. The tours cost S$2 per participant, with the proceeds going to the Tanjong Pagar-Tiong Bahru Community Development Welfare Fund.
Residents and individuals familiar with the neighbourhood were all heartened by the trail’s launch.
Educator Wong Ching Yee, 45, who grew up in the area and was taking her children to visit the trail, said: “It’s a gift to Singaporeans, as it helps preserve the memories of our community.”
Mr Roney Tan, a representative of the Tan Tock Seng family and a former Tiong Bahru resident, believes the heritage trail can help create a sense of belonging. “It preserves the heritage of a place and serves as a reminder for the history that we all share. As such, I’m very honoured that Mr Tan Tock Seng’s grave is part of the heritage trail.”
Coming up later this year are trails for older estates like Toa Payoh and Tampines, and there are plans for trails in Woodlands, Tampines, Chinatown and Little India over the next five years.
“The plan is for NHB to eventually connect all these trails working with other agencies, communities and NGOs so that Singaporeans can walk from one area to the next and eventually learn more about Singapore’s various constituencies and communities through these trails,” Ms Thangamma said.
Existing heritage trails include areas such as Kampong Glam, Balestier, Jalan Besar, Bukit Timah, Queenstown and Ang Mo Kio.
Asked about suggestions to nominate Tiong Bahru as a UNESCO World Heritage site, Ms Indranee said: “I understand that in order to be a UNESCO heritage side, you have to meet 10 criteria which are quite stringent. I don’t know at the current time whether Tiong Bahru actually meets those criteria, so further research has to be done. But if it does, it’d be a wonderful nomination.”
04-14-2013, 10:46 PM #7007
Multi-virus detector chip created by Singapore team
By Sara Grosse
POSTED: 12 Apr 2013 5:11 PM
In a world first, a Singapore scientist and his team have developed a chip which can detect up to 70,000 different viruses and bacteria in one test.
- SINGAPORE: In a world first, a local scientist and his team have developed a chip which can detect up to 70,000 different viruses and bacteria in one shot.
Currently, typical diagnostics test for less than 50 different viruses.
The idea to develop a device which can detect all viruses came about because of the outbreak of SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) 10 years ago.
During that time, there was no easy method for physicians to pinpoint the disease.
Patients were kept in isolation, with several tests performed before it was determined if they had the virus or not.
Dr Christopher Wong, chief scientific officer for translational technologies at the Genome Institute of Singapore, said: "Current diagnostics tend to be based only on a single pathogen. In other words, if you say, 'I want to test to find out whether you have dengue or not'. That is one test. Then, you say, 'oh, you don't have dengue but I'm also worried, do you have chikungunya?' That's a second test. Or, it could be, 'do you have flu?' So that's a third test."
Ten years later, scientists are hoping the chip will prove to be a big advantage during epidemics, with its ability to diagnose diseases fast.
A DNA sample from an infected patient is extracted and then put on the chip.
Within 24 hours, a report is generated, showing which viruses are detected.
The chip can also detect new viruses, such as the avian influenza A (H7N9) virus first found in humans last month.
Dr Edison Liu, president of Human Genome Organisation, said: "All the 70,000 pathogens are in one way or another related to each other, not closely but related enough, so that the probes were constructed and selected specifically to be generalised, if need be. So if you have a new SARS virus, a new coronavirus that is SARS-like and you've never seen it before, this (chip) will detect it."
Right now, the chip is just being used for research purposes but developers hope that once it gets FDA approval, it can be used in hospitals. They say it can potentially free up bed space.
That's because once the patient's disease is identified, they can be treated more quickly and discharged earlier.
And while only one chip can be used per patient, developers say it is still cost-effective, as the device costs less than S$600 and only needs one technician to operate.
Last edited by Loh; 04-14-2013 at 10:53 PM.
- SINGAPORE: In a world first, a local scientist and his team have developed a chip which can detect up to 70,000 different viruses and bacteria in one shot.
04-18-2013, 10:59 PM #7008
Meritocracy: Vision of S'pore as society of equals
ASK DPM THARMAN SPECIAL
Call for a broader meritocracy where people recognise each other's strengths
Published on Apr 19, 2013
Mr Tharman (not pictured), a former education minister, says that Singapore is a meritocracy that is still a bit too much defined by what happened in one's school years or post-secondary years. -- ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM
By Robin Chan, Political Correspondent
HOW you did in school at age 18 should not define your life, Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam firmly believes.
This is why his vision for Singapore in 20 years is for it to become a society where people treat each other as equals, regardless of their education or job.
What matters is not which school one went to, or how one did at 18. What should matter is whether everyone has the opportunity to continually improve and upgrade his lot in life, whatever his starting point.
As the country mulls over the kind of society it wants to be, it has to look beyond just raising wages, or what kind of tax policy to have. "It's about changing the way we think about responsibility to society... It's also recognising the role that everyone plays in keeping the society going."
04-18-2013, 11:08 PM #7009
Universal Studios Singapore hits 10 million visitor mark
Published on Apr 18, 2013
Universal Studios Singapore welcomed its 10 millionth visitor on Thursday with much fanfare. -- FILE PHOTO: RESORTS WORLD SENTOSA
By Joanna Lee
Universal Studios Singapore welcomed its 10 millionth visitor on Thursday with much fanfare.
Singaporean Ms Joanne Tan was greeted by Marilyn Monroe and Woody Woodpecker among other staff dressed up as famous celebrities or cartoon characters. She also received gifts worth more than $1,000 including an exclusive tour of the amusement park, a fully-paid for dinner and theme park merchandise.
"The surprise welcome made us feel like superstars, it felt like we were in the movies," said Ms Tan, 40, housewife who was planning a day-out for the family. "This is actually the first time we are visiting Universal Studios Singapore, so I am really excited."
Universal Studios Singapore is a theme park that opened in March 2010 as an attraction at integrated resort Resorts World Sentosa. It offers 23 rides as well as shows and attractions.
04-18-2013, 11:57 PM #7010
First US littoral combat ship USS Freedom arrives in Singapore
Published on Apr 18, 2013
The United States (US) Navy's first littoral combat ship USS Freedom arrived in Singapore on Thursday morning, to start its eight-month deployment in South-east Asia. It was welcomed by US Ambassador to Singapore David Adelman and the Republic of Singapore Navy's fleet commander Timothy Lo. -- ST PHOTO: JERMYN CHOW
The USS Freedom arrives in Manila to join the Philippine and US military exercise dubbed Balikatan 2013 (Shoulder-to-Shoulder), on April 9, 2013. The US Navy's first littoral combat ship USS Freedom arrived in Singapore on Thursday, April 18, 2013, to start its eight-month deployment in South-east Asia. -- FILE PHOTO: AFP
Tourists take souvenir photos of the USS Freedom as it docks at Manila South Harbour for its first ever visit to Manila, Philippines, on Monday, April 9, 2013. The US Navy's first littoral combat ship USS Freedom arrived in Singapore on Thursday, April 18, 2013, to start its eight-month deployment in South-east Asia. -- FILE PHOTO: AP
US Navy crewmen raise the US flag as the combat ship USS Freedom docks at Manila South Harbour for its first ever visit to Manila, Philippines, on Tuesday, April 9, 2013. The US Navy's first littoral combat ship USS Freedom arrived in Singapore on Thursday, April 18, 2013, to start its eight-month deployment in South-east Asia. -- FILE PHOTO: AP
The littoral combat ship USS Freedom departs for a deployment to the Asia-Pacific region, in San Diego Bay, California, on March 1, 2013. The US Navy's first littoral combat ship USS Freedom arrived in Singapore on Thursday, April 18, 2013, to start its eight-month deployment in South-east Asia. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS
By Jermyn Chow
The United States (US) Navy's first littoral combat ship USS Freedom arrived in Singapore on Thursday morning, to start its eight-month deployment in South-east Asia. It was welcomed by US Ambassador to Singapore David Adelman and the Republic of Singapore Navy's fleet commander Timothy Lo.
The warship with its 91 crew members arrived at Changi Naval Base afer a month-long sea journey from San Diego on March 1 . Also embarked on the 115m- long vessel is the MH-60 seahawk naval helicopter. "Freedom has met every milestone of this deployment on time and with the professionalism you would expect of US Navy Sailors," said Cmdr Timothy Wilke, commanding officer, USS Freedom. "I'm proud of Freedom's accomplishments to date, but I'm also looking forward to putting the ship through its paces over the next several months."
USS Freedom's arrival in Singapore comes two years after Singapore and the US announced the deployment to this part of the world at the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore. Up to four littoral combat ships can be deployed here.
While in Singapore, it will refuel and restock before heading out to sea for training. Comprehensive maintenance checks will also be done after Freedom's longest period out at sea since it was commissioned in 2008.
Last edited by Loh; 04-19-2013 at 12:01 AM.
04-19-2013, 12:14 AM #7011
USS Freedom begins deployment in South-east Asia
7 hours 52 min ago
SINGAPORE — A United States Navy warship designed to fight in coastal areas arrived in Singapore yesterday morning to start its eight-month deployment in South-east Asia, in the midst of heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula and competing territorial claims in the South China Sea.
The USS Freedom, with 91 crew members on board, was welcomed by US Ambassador to Singapore David Adelman and Republic of Singapore Navy Fleet Commander Colonel Timothy Lo at the Changi Naval Base.
Mr Adelman, who felt the ship represented America’s commitment to security in the region, said: “(Freedom is) part of a historic mission, writing the next chapter in the long history of US-Singapore partnership promoting peace and prosperity throughout South-east Asia.”
Mr Adelman stressed that the Freedom’s deployment was planned before the heightened tensions in the region and serves as “a continuation” of the US Navy’s work in the region for the past 70 years.
“There’s no direct relationship between the deployment of the Freedom and North Korea, but generally, we stand with our friends and allies,” he said.
Last year, Singapore agreed in principle for up to four littoral combat ships to be deployed on a rotational basis. While the arrival of the next littoral ship “has not been formally announced”, Mr Adelman said it would likely arrive “within the next 20 months”.
The move is part of efforts to re-balance US Navy assets to the Asia-Pacific region. On completion by 2020, about 60 per cent of US navy assets are to be in this part of the world.
Commander Timothy Wilke, Freedom’s Commanding Officer, brushed aside concerns raised by reporters about the condition of the ship, which witnessed three blackouts and a short diesel generator failure en route to Singapore from Pearl Harbour.
He pointed out that the ship had both been deployed on time and arrived and left its previous stops on time as well.
The diesel failure, for instance, did not impact the ship’s operations, he said. Commander Wilke said standby generators started up, with propulsion restored “with no detriment to maintain(ing) our speed”. He added that the ship “has met every milestone of this deployment on time”, and he was “looking forward to putting the ship through its paces”.
Next month, the Freedom is expected to participate in the International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference held here.
It will also join vessels from regional navies and other units from the US Navy’s 7th Fleet in “select phases” of the Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training exercises to be held in South-east Asia.
04-19-2013, 01:00 AM #7012
Singapore scientist wins award for genomics research
Dr Patrick Tan of Genome Institute of Singapore praised for work on cancer genomics
19 min 38 sec ago
SINGAPORE — For his research on the genomic profiles of Asian cancers, Dr Patrick Tan from A*STAR’s Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS) has received the 2013 Chen New Investigator Award from the international Human Genome Organisation (HUGO).
The Chen New Investigator award is given to scientists who make great contributions to human genetic and genomic research. It was established by Professor Yuan-Tsong (Y-T) Chen and Mrs Alice Der-Shan Chen, who have worked on biomedical research for over 30 years.
The Award Review Committee commended Dr Tan for his work on cancer genomics, which focuses on gastric cancer, and his education background and publication record.
Dr Tan received the Chen New Investigator Award at the annual meeting of HUGO, held on April 13–18 at the Marina Bay Sands Singapore. Dr Tan also received the Chen Award for Distinguished Academic Achievement in Human Genetic and Genomic Research.
Dr Tan’s research focuses on developing methods of differentiating and grouping gastric cancer patients according to their molecular profiles so that treatment can be customised for each group. In addition to working at GIS, Dr Tan is also Professor in the Cancer and Stem Cell Biology Program at Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School, and a Senior Principal Investigator at the Cancer Science Institute of Singapore at the National University of Singapore.
Dr Tan said, “I am deeply humbled and grateful to receive the Chen Award. This honour would not have been possible without the tireless support of my research team and our many collaborators throughout Singapore. We will redouble our efforts to translate our discoveries into applications that significantly improve health outcomes for patients in Singapore and the region.”
04-19-2013, 01:06 AM #7013
Tan is best US Collegiate bowler again
United States-based Singapore national bowler Jazreel Tan, pictured here with her IBMA Female Collegiate Bowler of the Year 2012-13 Award, believes her future remains back home. Photo: Jazreel Tan
8 hours 57 min ago
SINGAPORE — Jazreel Tan ended her final year of university in the United States with a bang when she was named the International Bowling Media Association (IBMA) Female Collegiate Bowler of the Year 2012-13 at the Night of Champions Awards in Lincoln, Nebraska, on Wednesday night.
The 23-year-old Singapore national bowler, who will graduate from Wichita State University next month, edged out seven other nominees, to land her third successive title following her 2010 Rookie of the Year win.
But even though the signs indicate a possible bright future on the US professional circuit, Tan, who is pursuing a sports management degree at WSU, told TODAY that she has no plans to compete professionally in the US after graduation.
“Being in America has helped my game tremendously ... and I’m very thankful to the Wichita State Shocker Bowling (programme) for providing me the chance to experience all I’ve learnt,” said Tan, who also credited Singapore Bowling Federation Technical Director Mervyn Foo and coach Remy Ong for her success.
“(But) I’ve been away for four years and should be with family … Singapore is still my home, and that’s where all the opportunities I’ve had came from.”
Established in 1987, the IBMA Awards, formerly the Bowling Writers Association of America awards, honours top US collegiate bowlers.
Previous winners include two-time World Cup winner Shannon Pluhowsky and Kelly Kulick, a nine-time winner on the US Professional Bowlers Association circuit.
Now that her American journey is coming to an end, Tan wants to rediscover the form that helped her win the 2006 Singapore Open and a silver (masters) at the 2007 World Championship in time for this July’s World Championship in Las Vegas.
But she said: “It has been a hell of a four years (here), and I wouldn’t exchange it for anything else.
“I have learnt a lot and it’s something I will never forget nor take for granted.”
04-19-2013, 03:53 AM #7014
yeahh..Singapore grow rapidly in the global economy... we Malaysia can't catch them easily..
04-21-2013, 11:19 PM #7015
STB's new strategy - woo travellers with Singapore way of life
Published on Apr 22, 2013
By Terrence Voon, Assistant News Editor
As part of its latest strategy to woo travellers, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) wants to champion Singaporeans and the Singapore way of life.
"There is a misunderstanding that we only care about high-end brands, your Louis Vuittons and your Chanels," said STB chief executive Lionel Yeo.
"But we're also very proud of our local designers like Hansel and Ong Shunmugam," he added, naming two well-known local fashion labels.
The Republic is ready to showcase its "authentic" local offerings alongside its glitzy cosmopolitan attractions, he added. This is to appeal to more discerning tourists, and help strengthen Singaporeans' sense of civic pride.
Tourists and visitors at Merlion Park. In the background is MBS. As part of its latest strategy to woo travellers, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) wants to champion Singaporeans and the Singapore way of life. -- ST FILE PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
04-22-2013, 04:02 AM #7016
NTU confers honorary degree on President Yudhoyono
Published on Apr 22, 2013
Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (left) poses with his Singapore counterpart Tony Tan in Singapore on Monday, April 22, 2013. Nanyang Technological University (NTU) on Monday recognised Indonesian President Yudhoyono's outstanding leadership and public service in diverse areas, as well as his strong links to the university. -- PHOTO: AP
By Goh Chin Lian
Nanyang Technological University (NTU) on Monday recognised Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's outstanding leadership and public service in diverse areas, as well as his strong links to the university.
At a ceremony to confer on him an honorary doctorate of letters, NTU President Bertil Andersson said these areas included his advocacy for peace, democracy, moderate Islam and human rights, and his firm commitment to the modernisation and transformation of Indonesia.
President Yudhoyono also encouraged close ties between NTU's S Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) and the Indonesian Defence University, as well as the Indonesian National Resilience Institute. His sons Agus Harimurti Yudhoyono and Edhie Baskoro Yudhoyono are both NTU alumni, having graduated with postgraduate degrees from RSIS.
He is the first Indonesian Head of State to receive an honorary degree from a Singapore university, NTU said in a statement on Monday. Heads of state who received an honorary degree from NTU include former Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam in 2008.
04-22-2013, 04:14 AM #7017
Prison inmates receive National Youth Achievement Award
Published on Apr 22, 2013
Inmates wait to collect certificates from Education Minister Heng Swee Keat (far right) at the National Youth Achievement Award presentation ceremony at Tanah Merah Prison. For 62 prison inmates, Monday contained a proud moment - when each of them walked up the stage to receive the National Youth Achievement Award (NYAA) at a presentation ceremony held at Tanah Merah Prison. -- ST PHOTO: AZIZ HUSSIN
By Bryna Singh
For 62 prison inmates, Monday contained a proud moment - when each of them walked up the stage to receive the National Youth Achievement Award (NYAA) at a presentation ceremony held at Tanah Merah Prison.
Many of their family members were present at the ceremony, where the guest of honour was Education Minister Heng Swee Keat. Addressing the award recipients in his speech, Mr Heng said: "I wish you the very best...Make good use of the support many in the community and your families are prepared to give you."
The NYAA is a nationwide youth development programme which aims to hone attributes such as self-reliance, perseverance, and a sense of responsibility in the community. This year's inmate awardees come from Tanah Merah Prison, Changi Women's Prison and Changi Prison Complex.
Award participants have to complete activities in four areas: community service, skills development, expedition and exploration, and physical recreation.
04-22-2013, 10:28 PM #7018
Indonesia and Singapore leaders hail excellent partnership
Published on Apr 23, 2013
Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and wife Ibu Ani, with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and wife Ho Ching. Dr Yudhoyono and PM Lee encouraged their private sectors to collaborate on projects under Indonesia's development masterplan. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE
By Goh Chin Lian
Singapore and Indonesia yesterday vowed to deepen economic ties as their leaders kept up a tradition of meeting retreat- style each year, this time at the Shangri-La Hotel.
The strong personal ties at the highest levels between Asean's largest member state and its smallest were also celebrated at a ceremony at which the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) conferred on President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono an honorary doctorate. He is the first Indonesian leader to receive such an honour.
Expressing satisfaction with the "excellent economic partnership" between their two countries, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Dr Yudhoyono also encouraged their private sectors to collaborate on projects under Indonesia's development masterplan, in a joint statement issued after their Leaders' Retreat.
These will build on the progress made by six working groups on the economy, that have already increased the flow of investments into special economic zones in Batam, Bintan and Karimun, and expanded air links
04-22-2013, 10:41 PM #7019
Indonesia, S’pore pledge to institutionalise cooperation
PM Lee Hsien Loong meets with Indonesia President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. Photo: Ernest Chua
Both countries also discuss how to strengthen efforts in tackling environmental issues
6 hours 27 min ago
SINGAPORE — With Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono nearing the end of his second term next year, Singapore and Indonesia will be looking to institutionalise some of the cooperative efforts that the two countries have enjoyed during Mr Yudhoyono’s tenure so far, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday.
Speaking to reporters after meetings held at the Singapore-Indonesia Leaders’ Retreat, Mr Lee said: “The President is thinking beyond 2014, because his term ends in 2014, and he expressed the importance of institutionalising our cooperation, so the good work we have done together will be carried forward and taken further by whoever succeeds him. I said I fully agree with that and we will work with him towards such an objective.”
Mr Yudhoyono, who is in his second five-year term, cannot stand for re-election under Indonesian law.
Both countries also discussed how to strengthen their cooperation in tackling current environment issues, such as trans-boundary haze.
Noting the haze that blanketed Singapore last Friday, Mr Lee said he asked Mr Yudhoyono to renew the lapsed agreements between Singapore and the Indonesian provinces of South Sumatra and Jambi, which would enable work on more sustainable farming practices, clearing of land and the avoidance of burning.
“Because the haze problem continues, for example, last week many of you would have noticed in fact there was a definite haze in the air, you could smell it, you could see it, I don’t think it is good for any of the countries in South-east Asia,” Mr Lee said.
The Prime Minister said that negotiations have been going well on the shared maritime boundary in the eastern part of the Strait of Singapore, with negotiators instructed to “press on and wrap this up soon”.
The next round of negotiations, which were first held in 2011, is due to take place in the middle of this year,
Other issues that Singapore and Indonesia will keep at include efforts at counter-terrorism which “remains a threat in South-east Asia”, as well as agricultural cooperation.
During the meeting, both leaders discussed developments in the Association of South-east Asian Nations region, in particular the South China Sea territorial dispute, which Mr Lee feared would threaten the advantages the region offers in terms of doing business.
He said: “It is not a problem which is going to go away soon, but if it is not handled well, and there’s mishap or some escalation which may not have been intended, and it changes the climate in South-east Asia, then we lose one of our great advantages ... not so many peaceful regions in the world where people can invest, where countries are at peace with one another and you can rely on an environment of security and tranquillity to do your business.”
At the retreat, foreign ministers of both countries also signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which provides a framework for both sides to work closely together in the areas of diplomatic education and training.
Mr Yudhoyono was also conferred an hononary doctorate of letters from the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) yesterday, in recognition of his outstanding leadership and public service in diverse areas such as democracy and human rights, as well as his instrumental role as a champion for the marine environment and forestry conservation.
He received the degree from Singapore President and NTU Chancellor Dr Tony Tan in a ceremony attended by several Singapore ministers and about 400 guests.
04-22-2013, 10:59 PM #7020
Leaders of Indonesia & S'pore meet to discuss ways to boost close ties
Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong held their leaders' retreat on Monday evening in Singapore.
- By S Ramesh
- POSTED: 22 Apr 2013 7:16 PM
- UPDATED: 22 Apr 2013 11:03 PM
SINGAPORE: Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has said that he had a good retreat with visiting Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.
Speaking to the Singapore media after the meeting on Monday, Mr Lee said both sides reviewed their bilateral and economic cooperation.
He said these are going well in several areas, including civil aviation, which has made progress. Mr Lee noted there are now many more flights between Singapore and Indonesia
He said: "The Indonesian airlines have been extending their fleet and building their networks and the Singapore Airlines would also like to fly to Indonesia more, both the traditional destinations and new destinations. I think if we are able to accommodate that, both sides benefit."
Progress has also been made in the area of agri-cooperation, where Singapore is importing more fruit and vegetables from Indonesia, and Mr Lee sees potential to do more.
One area that the Mr Lee hopes to see greater progress is cooperation on environmental issues, in particular, trans-boundary haze
Mr Lee noted the haze problem was evident in Singapore last week and that this was not good for countries in the region.
He said Singapore has had cooperation with the province of Jambi, to work with the provincial government to mitigate the haze problem.
He said while the cooperation worked well, the agreement has lapsed.
Mr Lee said he has asked President Yudhoyono, if the agreement could be renewed and the work taken forward.
He said: "The president agreed with me and he will encourage the governors of South Sumatra and Jambi to continue working with us. The haze problem continues, for example last week you would have notice there was a definite haze in the air; you could smell it, you could see it. I don't think that is good for any of the countries in Southeast Asia."
Beyond bilateral ties, Singapore and Indonesia are also working closely towards the grouping's next milestone - the ASEAN Community due in 2015.
Both agreed on the importance of reaching the milestone "solidly".
The region's security and the South China Sea territorial dispute were of concern to both leaders.
Mr Lee said: “We agreed on the importance of encouraging all the participants to be restrained, the claimants to exercise restraint and to resolve this peacefully and in accordance with the international law including the UNCLOS, UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. It is not a problem which is going to go away soon. But if it is not handled well and there is a mishap or escalation which may not have been intended, it changes the climate in Southeast Asia. "
Both leaders also agreed to institutionalise the cooperation that exists between both countries.
Earlier, the foreign ministers of both sides signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the fields of diplomatic education and training between the diplomatic academies of Singapore and Indonesia.
The signing ceremony was witnessed by the two leaders.
Both Mr Lee and President Yudhoyono will head to Brunei this week for the 22nd ASEAN Summit.
Last edited by Loh; 04-22-2013 at 11:05 PM.
04-22-2013, 11:15 PM #7021
From chicken droppings to biofuel
At some farms in Singapore, chicken droppings are put to good use and are converted into biofuels.
By Lim Wee Leng
POSTED: 22 Apr 2013 8:10 PM
SINGAPORE: Eggs are not the only cash cow for some farms in Singapore.
Chicken droppings are also being put to good use and are converted into biofuels.
At Chew’s Group's farm in Lim Chu Kang, about 700,000 chickens produce 60 tons of droppings a day.
It's building a plant, costing about S$5 million that can convert the waste.
It hopes to use this to replace the current practice of treating the fresh manure and selling it to vegetable farmers in Singapore and Malaysia as fertiliser, because the process is expensive and needs a lot of space and manpower.
The first phase of the new plant will be completed by the end of this year and can supply up to 70 per cent of energy needs.
If it succeeds, the farm hopes to scale up.
Executive chairman of Chew’s Group, Chew Chee Bin said: "We actually need to solve our chicken dung problem. Traditionally, we take 35 days to ferment the chicken dung and supply to local and Malaysia vegetable farmers. By using the biogas system, we can reduce almost 50 per cent of land use, reduce manpower use, and increase egg production.
“If we enter into the second phase, we will treat 80 tons of chicken dung, which in turn will produce almost one mega kilowatt hours, which is sufficient to supply the whole farm and supply to the power grid."
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