August 13, 2012
I n 1819, Singapore was founded as a trading colony by the Great Britain. In 1963, it joined the Malaysian Federation but separated two years later and became independent. Singapore subsequently became one of the world's most prosperous countries with strong international trading links, having its port is one of the world's busiest in terms of tonnage handled, and with per capita GDP equal to that of the leading nations of Western Europe. GEOGRAPHIC CHARACERISTICS
Singapore is a small, heavily urbanized, island city-state in Southeast Asia. It is located at the southern tip of the Malayan Peninsula between Malaysia and Indonesia. Singapore has a total land area of 778 km² and 193 km of coastline. It is separated from Indonesia by the Singapore Strait and from Malaysia by the Straits of Johor. SOCIO-ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS
As of July 2012, Singapore has a total population size of 5,353,494. 13.8% of them are of the age 0 to 14 years old, where 51% are male. 77% of them are of the age 15 to 64 years old, where 48% are male. The rest of the population is of the age 65 years old and above, where 45% are male.
According to the 2000 census, 42.5% of the people living in Singapore are Buddhist, 14.9% are Muslim, 8.5% are Taoist, 4% are Hindu, 4.8% are Catholic, 9.8% are other Christian, 0.7% are other religion and 14.8% are with no religion.
Singaporean culture is best described as a melting pot of mainly Chinese, Indian, British, and Malay cultures, a reflection of its immigrant history. Singapore has a diverse population of nearly 5 million people which is made up of Chinese, Malays, Indians, Caucasians and Eurasians and Asians of different origins, which is in line with the nation's history as a crossroads for various ethnic and racial groups. In addition, 42% of Singapore's population are foreigners, which make it the country with the sixth highest proportion of foreigners worldwide. Singapore is also the third most densely populated in the world after Macau and Monaco. The political structure of Singapore takes the form of a parliamentary representative democratic republic whereby the President of Singapore is the head of state, the Prime Minister of Singapore is the head of government, and of a multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the cabinet. Cabinet has the general direction and control of the Government and is collectively responsible to Parliament. Like many countries in the world today, there are three separate branches of government: the legislature, executive and judiciary, though not necessarily meaning that there is a separation of power. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the Parliament of Singapore. The legislature is the parliament, which consists of the president as its head and a single chamber whose members are elected by popular vote. The role of the president as the head of state has been, historically, largely ceremonial although the constitution was amended in 1991 to give the president some veto powers in a few key decisions such as the use of the national reserves and the appointment of key judiciary, Civil Service and Singapore Armed Forces posts. He also exercises powers over civil service appointments and internal security matters.
II. ECONOMIC GROWTH – LONG-RUN AND SHORT-RUN
Despite its small geographic area and lack of natural resources, Singapore is considered as one of the fastest growing economies. Through the years, Singapore has strengthened their economic foundation. Singapore was able to emerge and overcome economic giants such as the United States and several countries in Europe in the recent years. Key industries such as electronic manufacturing and information technology products, financial services, tourism, and the country’s seaports have become huge factors in the...