Singaporean Banks Abruptly Terminate Accounts of Bitcoin Exchanges

Singaporean Banks Abruptly Terminate Accounts of Bitcoin Exchanges:

Earlier this week, two local bodies representing the local financial technology (fintech) industry have revealed that Singaporean banks have denied banking services to bitcoin and blockchain startups.

Singapore’s Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Industry Association, or Access, submitted a formal complaint to the Singaporean government, requesting officials to step in and create a fair and transparent environment for fintech companies.

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Maths, reading and science skills of average Australian students are as bad as impoverished teenagers in Singapore, study finds

Maths, reading and science skills of average Australian students are as bad as impoverished teenagers in Singapore, study finds:

The science, reading and mathematics skills of Australian students are on par with the most disadvantaged students in Singapore.

According to Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) scores, Singapore’s 15-year-old’s are the smartest in the world and are two years and four months ahead of Australian students in maths.

That would mean the average 15-year-old in the Asian city would be as clever as an Aussie school student aged 17 years and four months.

They are also 18 months ahead in science and 12 months more advanced in reading, the study found.

H/t reader kevin a.

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Australia: Singapore’s military could force fourth generation farmers to flee Queensland


Up to 14,000 foreign troops will call rural central Queensland home by 2021

Singapore’s military could force fourth generation farmers to flee Queensland:

BY 2021, rural towns lining the Bruce Highway in central Queensland will look nothing like they do now.

Quiet plains home to fourth generation farmers and thousands of head of livestock will be cleared and transformed into military battlegrounds where tanks roam rather than cattle.

Thousands — estimates suggest as many as 14,000 — foreign troops will drive armoured vehicles, fly helicopters and jet aircraft and fire live rounds. It won’t be suitable for civilians.

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China Flexes Its Muscles on Singapore, Taiwan, and US over Military Ties

China Flexes Its Muscles on Singapore, Taiwan, and US over Military Ties:

Beijing — While Taiwan faces regional pressure to adhere to the one-China policy — due, in large part, to its budding friendship with the United States — the city-state of Singapore has found itself in a similar position as China continues to invoke sovereignty on an issue of seized military hardware.

From a report by the International Business Times on Monday:

“China has warned Singapore to be ‘cautious with their words and actions’ and reminded the city state to respect its one-China policy after it demanded the return of its military vehicles that have been detained at a Hong Kong port since November 2016.

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Something Stunning Is Taking Place Off The Coast Of Singapore

singapore teaser

Something Stunning Is Taking Place Off The Coast Of Singapore:

  “I’ve been coming to Singapore once a year for the last 15 years, and flying in I have never seen the waters so full of idle tankers,”

– Senior European oil trader a day after arriving in the city-state.

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US, Japan, Canada, Australia and 8 Other Countries Sign Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement

tpp

US, Japan, Canada, Australia and 8 Other Countries Sign Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement:

The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) would be horrible for Americans and the people of the world.

But most politicians are thoroughly corruptNeither the Democratic or Republican parties represent the interests of the American people. Both parties ignore the desires of their own bases.

So today, 12 countries – Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, Singapore, Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, United States and Vietnam – signed the TPP.

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Land-starved Singapore exhumes its cemeteries to build roads and malls

–  Land-starved Singapore exhumes its cemeteries to build roads and malls

The tiny city-state has dug up hundreds of thousands of graves to pave the way for roads, houses and shopping centres. As Singapore celebrates 50 years of independence, conservationists argue heritage need not be sacrificed to progress

Overgrown and littered with dead leaves, Bukit Brown cemetery does not feature in many tourist guides to Singapore. But its 200 hectares are one of the island’s few green spaces, home to a quarter of the bird species – and the final resting place for more than 100,000 people. Yet its days might be numbered. Over 3,700 of those 100,000 graves have now been exhumed, to make way for an eight-lane highway that will cut the cemetery in half.

This gruesome business is nothing new. In Singapore, hundreds of thousands of bodies have already been hauled up from the ground to pave the way for malls, roads and apartment blocks. The entire city-state of Singapore covers a mere 71,830 hectares, less than half the size of Greater London, so land is always at a premium here – and the needs of the dead generally give way to that of the living.

Gold Flows East: China, India Import Massive Quantities Of Gold From Switzerland

Gold Flows East – China, India Import Massive Quantities of Gold from Switzerland (GoldCore. April 27, 2015):

– Singapore, India and China continue to import staggering volumes of gold from the West
– U.K. exports of bullion to Switzerland increase 6 fold to a very large 97 tonnes
– Gold exports from Switzerland to both China and India doubled in March
– Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE) becoming most important centre for physical gold trade
– LBMA says London gold trade will not move to exchange
– Gold price languishes at all time inflation adjusted lows despite robust demand …
– Gold will protect Asian peasants and western middle classes …

Swiss Gold Imports

In what future generations will likely see as a major, potentially catastrophic blunder of monetary policy, the West and particularly the City of London continues to hemorrhage huge volumes of gold which is flowing Eastwards to Singapore, India and China from London via Switzerland.

“Gold exports to China from the refining hub of Switzerland almost doubled to 46.4 metric tons in March”, up from 23.6 tonnes in February” according to Bloomberg. India’s gold imports from Switzerland doubled to 72.5 tonnes in the same period.

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Fukushima Rice Back On Sale In Singapore

Fukushima Rice Back on Sale in Singapore – Reports (RIA Novosti, Aug 25, 2014):

MOSCOW, August 25 (RIA Novosti) – Rice produced in Japan’s Fukushima Prefecture has gone on sale in Japanese supermarkets in Singapore, the BBC reported Monday.

Singapore is said to have extremely strict food safety standards, and Japanese farmers have expressed hope that passing the state’s requirements could improve global confidence in their rice, especially the rice from Fukushima.

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Deep Divisions Over TPP As US Pressures To Close Controversial Deal – WikiLeaks

Deep divisions over TPP as US pressures to close controversial deal – WikiLeaks (RT, Dec 9, 2013):

The US is ramping up pressure to secure a Trans-Pacific Trade Deal with conditions that could undermine the national interests of nations involved. WikiLeaks documents say talks are “paralyzed,” with the US refusing to compromise on disputed issues.

Anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks has released two documents revealing the state of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The deal in question includes 12 countries – the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei – which represent more than 40 percent of the world’s gross domestic product.

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Asian Buyers Snap Up Half Of New London Homes

Asian Buyers Snap Up Half of New London Homes (Wall Street Journal, Jan 22, 2013):

If you’ve just moved into a newly built apartment in central London, don’t be perplexed if your neighbors speak mostly Chinese.

Market-cooling measures in Asia have helped fuel interest in London’s real estate market—long a popular destination for property buyers on the prowl, says property consultancy Knight Frank. Last year, overseas buyers spent $3.5 billion on apartments undergoing construction in central London, up 22% from the year earlier.

Together, buyers from Singapore and Hong Kong snapped up nearly 40% of all such apartments in central London. Adding in buyers from Malaysia and mainland China, Asian buyers accounted for roughly half of all purchases. By comparison, U.K. buyers made up just 27% of all purchases of apartments under construction, according to Knight Frank’s latest figures. Such figures were generally consistent with those seen in 2011.

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7 Out Of 10 Asian Countries Abandon The U.S. Dollar And Peg Their Currency To The Chinese Yuan

Asian economies turn to yuan (China Daily, Oct 24, 2012):

A “renminbi bloc” has been formed in East Asia, as nations in the region abandon the US dollar and peg their currency to the Chinese yuan — a major signal of China’s successful bid to internationalize its currency, a research report has said.

The Peterson Institute for International Economics, or PIIE, said in its latest research that China has moved closer to its long-term goal for the renminbi to become a global reserve currency.

Since the global financial crisis, the report said, more and more nations, especially emerging economies, see the yuan as the main reference currency when setting their exchange rate.

And now seven out of 10 economies in the region — including South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand — track the renminbi more closely than they do the US dollar. Only three economies in the group — Hong Kong, Vietnam, and Mongolia — still have currencies following the dollar more closely than the renminbi, said the report, posted on the institute’s website.

The South Korean won, for example, has appreciated in sync with the renminbi against the dollar since mid-2010.

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Geeky Science: The Ultimate Spy Tool – ‘And Suddenly Everybody Is (RFID) Chipped, Everybody Is Monitored And Everybody Is Trackable Everywhere On Earth’ (Video)

‘An international team of researchers from the United States, China and Singapore.’



YouTube Added: 19.08.2011

The journal Science is reporting this week that a super thin electronic patch that sticks to the skin like a temporary tattoo could transform medical sensing, computer gaming and even spy operations. The micro-electronics technology – called an epidermal electronic system or EES – was developed by an international team of researchers from the United States, China and Singapore. One of the creators – Professor John Rogers from the University of Illinois has said that EES eliminates the “distinction between electronics and biology” because it “integrates with the skin in a way that is mechanically and physiologically invisible to the user.” In test studies the patch was used instead of bulky electrodes to monitor brain, heart and muscle tissue activity and users who had it on their throat operated a voice-activated video game with more than 90 percent accuracy. The wireless device is nearly weightless and requires so little power it can fuel itself with miniature solar collectors or by picking up electromagnetic radiation. Less than 50-microns thick – the device is thinner than a human hair and as soft as human skin and it can stick to the skin without any glue or sticky material. In fact – EES uses a molecular force known as “van der Waals interactions” to create adhesion between the patch and human skin on the molecular level. Scientists have spent six years developing this technology and they believe that EES might find future medical uses in patients with sleep apnea, babies who need neonatal care and for making electronic bandages to help skin heal from wounds and burns.

On the other hand, it could also be the ultimate spy tool. Imagine somebody comes up to you and touches your neck and, unbeknownst to you, you are now carrying a device that can transmit to somebody else everything from your blood pressure – are you under stress or lying? – to the words you’re speaking. Future versions may even have cameras in them. And they wouldn’t even need to touch you – a few thousand of them could be blown into a crowd – it wouldn’t even look like a little bit of dust – and suddenly everybody is chipped, everybody is monitored, everybody is trackable anywhere on earth. And this isn’t my paranoid rant – this is explicitly why the spy organizations of the countries that collaborated to develop this – Singapore, China, and the United States – are so excited about it. More as the story develops…

Asian leaders to pledge EU-style bloc

association-of-southeast-asian-nations
Graphic highlighting facts on the 10-member states of the ASEAN national grouping

HUA HIN, Thailand — Asian leaders will pledge to overcome their differences and push towards the formation of an EU-style community as they wrap up an annual summit in Thailand on Sunday.

Human rights issues, border disputes and signs of apathy over a meeting that was twice delayed by protests have at times marred the gathering of leaders from a region that contains more than half the world’s population.

But plans to increase the region’s global clout by building closer ties eventually dominated the three-day meeting of Southeast Asian nations along with China, Japan, South Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand.

Heads of state at the Thai beach resort of Hua Hin will sign a raft of agreements Sunday on boosting economic and political integration and cooperating on subjects including climate change and disaster management.

Japan’s proposal for a so-called East Asian community will be up for further discussion, after Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said the region should “have the aspiration that East Asia is going to lead the world.”

The 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is also set to restate its commitment to create its own political and economic community by 2015.

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Hundreds of Cargo Ships Treading Water Off Singapore, Waiting for Work

cargo-ships
Sunrise in the Strait between Indonesia and Singapore, where 735 cargo ships were gathered Tuesday because of a sharp decline in global exports.

SINGAPORE – To go out in a small boat along Singapore’s coast now is to feel like a mouse tiptoeing through an endless herd of slumbering elephants.

One of the largest fleets of ships ever gathered idles here just outside one of the world’s busiest ports, marooned by the receding tide of global trade. There may be tentative signs of economic recovery in spots around the globe, but few here.

Hundreds of cargo ships – some up to 300,000 tons, with many weighing more than the entire 130-ship Spanish Armada – seem to perch on top of the water rather than in it, their red rudders and bulbous noses, submerged when the vessels are loaded, sticking a dozen feet out of the water.

So many ships have congregated here – 735, according to AIS Live ship tracking service of Lloyd’s Register-Fairplay in Redhill, Britain – that shipping lines are becoming concerned about near misses and collisions in one of the world’s most congested waterways, the straits that separate Malaysia and Singapore from Indonesia.

The root of the problem lies in an unusually steep slump in global trade, confirmed by trade statistics announced on Tuesday.

China said that its exports nose-dived 22.6 percent in April from a year earlier, while the Philippines said that its exports in March were down 30.9 percent from a year earlier. The United States announced on Tuesday that its exports had declined 2.4 percent in March.

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Global Economic Crisis Accelerating

Jim Rogers: ‘UK has nothing to sell’ (Financial Times):
“The City of London is finished, the financial centre of the world is moving east.”

Jim Rogers: Obama administration run by people who caused the latest financial problems (BBC News)

The Obama Stimulus Plan Won’t Work (Lew Rockwell)

SERIOUSLY ALARMED (Telegraph):
(Even Mr. Ambrose Evans-Pritchard is now alarmed!)

King paves way to start Bank print presses (Times Online)

Sterling hits 23-year low against dollar (Financial Times)

Geithner pledges ‘dramatic’ action (Financial Times)

Portugal says S&P downgrade due to global crisis (Reuters)

Singapore Economy May Post Biggest Decline on Record (Bloomberg)

Emerging markets face $180 bn investment decline (Business Standard)

French government to pump €6bn into ailing car industry (Guardian)

Japan’s ‘Severe’ Recession May Last Three Years, Yoshikawa Says (Bloomberg)

BHP Billiton to cut 6000 jobs and close mine (Times Online)

Eaton to Cut 5200 Jobs in a 2nd Wave of Reductions (Bloomberg)

Record redundancies push unemployment to 1.92 million (Times Online)

Ecuador to Cut $1.5 Billion in Imports to Defend Use of Dollar (Bloomberg)

Ex-Scots bankers could face Holyrood inquiry (Times Online)

Ireland’s Banks Sink With Decline of ‘Celtic Tiger’ (Bloomberg)

Patrick Rocca, ‘poster boy’ of Ireland’s Celtic Tiger, kills himself (Times Online)

Bankers accused in crisis could face trials in US (Guardian)

Hedge Fund Run by Ex-Car Salesman Is Scam, SEC Says (Bloomberg)

Federal Home Loan Banks may have to borrow from US (Los Angeles Times)

Merrill Clients Pulled $10 Billion in Fourth Quarter (Bloomberg)

Standard Life investors demand compensation after ‘cash’ fund invests in toxic debt (Telegraph)

Toyota Tops GM in Global Car Sales in 2008 (Washington Post)

Citigroup Makes Stock Incentive Awards to Executives (Bloomberg)

Singapore Prescribes Shorter Showers, Less Meat to Fight Slump

Jan. 16 (Bloomberg) — Until a few months ago, Amit Singh dreamed of buying a car. Now, with S$75,000 ($50,100) in the bank, the lawyer is holding back, saying he’ll continue to make the one-hour commute to work on the Singapore subway.

“In these bad times, the buzzword is save, not spend,” says Singh, 34. “It’s not the right economic climate to be lavish or to have a luxurious lifestyle.”

Singapore is asking its citizens, the world’s third- wealthiest adjusted for purchasing power, to be prudent as analysts predict the worst economic slump in the nation’s 43- year history. In speeches, pamphlets and ads, the government is advising people to switch to cheaper frozen meats, take shorter showers and skip the top-of-the-line mobile phone.

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Singapore GDP Posts Biggest Fall on Record

SINGAPORE — Singapore plunged deeper into recession in the fourth quarter as gross domestic product marked its biggest quarterly decline on record, said the government, which lowered its projection for 2009.

The darker outlook for the small, trade-dependent economy — considered to be a bellwether for the rest of the region — likely means the government will step up spending to offset a slowdown in manufacturing and a rapid cooling in the construction and services sectors. It may also pressure the central bank to ease monetary policy to support growth.

Singapore’s economy contracted at a seasonally adjusted, annualized pace of 12.5% in the quarter, accelerating from a 5.4% decline in the third quarter, according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry’s estimate. It was the biggest contraction since the government began publishing seasonally adjusted data in 1976.

“The global economic crisis has worsened since November, with sharp declines in global demand, trade and investments,” the ministry said.

The government cut its forecast for 2009, projecting a range of between a contraction of 2% and growth of 1%, against its estimate in November of a range of a contraction of 1% and growth of 2%.

Citigroup economist Kit Wei Zheng is more pessimistic. He forecasts GDP will contract 2.8% this year. That would make the current downturn worse than the slump in 1998, when the economy shrank 1.4% as it was buffeted by the Asian financial crisis, and worse than the 2001 recession following the collapse of U.S. technology stocks, when GDP shrank 2.4%. “If we are correct, 2009 will mark the most severe recession in Singapore’s history,” he said.

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