East & Southeast Asia :: SINGAPORE
  • Introduction :: SINGAPORE

  • Singapore was founded as a British trading colony in 1819. It joined the Malaysian Federation in 1963 but was ousted two years later and became independent. Singapore subsequently became one of the world's most prosperous countries with strong international trading links (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.
  • Geography :: SINGAPORE

  • Southeastern Asia, islands between Malaysia and Indonesia
    1 22 N, 103 48 E
    Southeast Asia
    total: 697 sq km
    land: 687 sq km
    water: 10 sq km
    country comparison to the world: 192
    slightly more than 3.5 times the size of Washington, DC
    0 km
    193 km
    territorial sea: 3 nm
    exclusive fishing zone: within and beyond territorial sea, as defined in treaties and practice
    tropical; hot, humid, rainy; two distinct monsoon seasons - northeastern monsoon (December to March) and southwestern monsoon (June to September); inter-monsoon - frequent afternoon and early evening thunderstorms
    lowlying, gently undulating central plateau
    mean elevation: NA
    elevation extremes: lowest point: Singapore Strait 0 m
    highest point: Bukit Timah 166 m
    fish, deepwater ports
    agricultural land: 1%
    arable land 0.9%; permanent crops 0.1%; permanent pasture 0%
    forest: 3.3%
    other: 95.7% (2011 est.)
    0 sq km (2012)
    most of the urbanization is along the southern coast, with relatively dense population clusters found in the central areas
    flash floods
    industrial pollution; limited natural freshwater resources; limited land availability presents waste disposal problems; seasonal smoke/haze resulting from forest fires in Indonesia
    party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution
    signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
    focal point for Southeast Asian sea routes
  • People and Society :: SINGAPORE

  • 5,781,728 (July 2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 114
    noun: Singaporean(s)
    adjective: Singapore
    Chinese 74.3%, Malay 13.4%, Indian 9.1% (includes Sri Lankan), other 3.2% (2016 est.)
    Mandarin (official) 36.3%, English (official) 29.8%, Malay (official) 11.9%, Hokkien 8.1%, Cantonese 4.1%, Tamil (official) 3.2%, Teochew 3.2%, other Indian languages 1.2%, other Chinese dialects 1.1%, other 1.1% (2010 est.)
    Buddhist 33.9%, Muslim 14.3%, Taoist 11.3%, Catholic 7.1%, Hindu 5.2%, other Christian 11%, other 0.7%, none 16.4% (2010 est.)
    0-14 years: 12.94% (male 382,479/female 365,595)
    15-24 years: 17.02% (male 484,355/female 499,940)
    25-54 years: 50.45% (male 1,420,833/female 1,496,125)
    55-64 years: 10.34% (male 299,446/female 298,562)
    65 years and over: 9.24% (male 243,418/female 290,975) (2016 est.)
    total dependency ratio: 37.4
    youth dependency ratio: 21.4
    elderly dependency ratio: 16.1
    potential support ratio: 6.2 (2015 est.)
    total: 34.3 years
    male: 34.2 years
    female: 34.4 years (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 83
    1.86% (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 58
    8.4 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 221
    3.5 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 217
    13.6 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 5
    most of the urbanization is along the southern coast, with relatively dense population clusters found in the central areas
    urban population: 100% of total population (2015)
    rate of urbanization: 2.02% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
    SINGAPORE (capital) 5.619 million (2015)
    at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
    0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
    15-24 years: 0.97 male(s)/female
    25-54 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
    55-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
    65 years and over: 0.83 male(s)/female
    total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
    30.5 years
    median age (2015 est.)
    10 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 182
    total: 2.4 deaths/1,000 live births
    male: 2.6 deaths/1,000 live births
    female: 2.2 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 222
    total population: 85 years
    male: 82.3 years
    female: 87.8 years (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 2
    0.82 children born/woman (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 224
    4.9% of GDP (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 144
    1.91 physicians/1,000 population (2013)
    2 beds/1,000 population (2011)
    improved:
    urban: 100% of population
    total: 100% of population
    unimproved:
    urban: 0% of population
    total: 0% of population (2015 est.)
    improved:
    urban: 100% of population
    total: 100% of population
    unimproved:
    urban: 0% of population
    total: 0% of population (2015 est.)
    NA
    NA
    NA
    note: active local transmission of Zika virus by Aedes species mosquitoes has been identified in this country (as of August 2016); it poses an important risk (a large number of cases possible) among US citizens if bitten by an infective mosquito; other less common ways to get Zika are through sex, via blood transfusion, or during pregnancy, in which the pregnant woman passes Zika virus to her fetus (2016)
    6.8% (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 142
    2.9% of GDP (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 140
    definition: age 15 and over can read and write
    total population: 96.8%
    male: 98.6%
    female: 95% (2015 est.)
    total: 13 years
    male: 13 years
    female: 13 years (2009)
    total: 7%
    male: 5.4%
    female: 9% (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 121
  • Government :: SINGAPORE

  • conventional long form: Republic of Singapore
    conventional short form: Singapore
    local long form: Republic of Singapore
    local short form: Singapore
    etymology: name derives from the Sanskrit words "singa" (lion) and "pura" (city) to describe the city-state's leonine symbol
    parliamentary republic
    name: Singapore
    geographic coordinates: 1 17 N, 103 51 E
    time difference: UTC+8 (13 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
    none
    9 August 1965 (from Malaysian Federation)
    National Day, 9 August (1965)
    several previous; latest adopted 22 December 1965; amended many times, last in 2015 (2016)
    English common law
    has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
    citizenship by birth: no
    citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Singapore
    dual citizenship recognized: no
    residency requirement for naturalization: 10 years
    21 years of age; universal and compulsory
    chief of state: President Tony TAN Keng Yam (since 1 September 2011)
    head of government: Prime Minister LEE Hsien Loong (since 12 August 2004); Deputy Prime Ministers TEO Chee Hean (since 1 April 2009) and Tharman SHANMUGARATNAM (since 21 May 2011)
    cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister; Cabinet responsible to Parliament
    elections/appointments: president directly elected by simple majority popular vote for a single 6-year term; election last held on 27 August 2011 (next to be held by August 2017); following legislative elections, leader of majority party or majority coalition usually appointed prime minister by president; deputy prime ministers appointed by the president
    election results: Tony TAN Keng Yam elected president; percent of vote - Tony TAN Keng Yam (independent) 35.2% , TAN Cheng Bock (independent) 34.9%, TAN Jee Say (independent) 25%, TAN Kin Lian (PP) 4.9%
    description: unicameral Parliament (101 seats; 89 members directly elected by popular vote, 9 nominated by the president, and up to 9 - but currently 3 - non-constituency members from opposition parties to ensure political diversity; members serve 5-year terms)
    elections: last held on 11 September 2015 (next to be held in 2020)
    election results: percent of vote by party - PAP 69.9%, WP 12.5%, other 17.6%; seats by party - PAP 83, WP 6
    highest court(s): Supreme Court (consists of the president or chief justice and 16 justices and organized into an upper tier Appeal Court and a lower tier High Court)
    judge selection and term of office: all judges appointed by the president from candidates recommended by the prime minister after consultation with the chief justice; justices appointed for life
    subordinate courts: district, magistrates', juvenile, family, community, and coroners' courts; small claims tribunals
    National Solidarity Party or NSP [LIM Tean]
    People's Action Party or PAP [LEE Hsien Loong]
    Singapore Democratic Party or SDP [CHEE Soon Juan]
    Workers' Party or WP [LOW Thia Khiang]
    none
    ADB, AOSIS, APEC, Arctic Council (observer), ARF, ASEAN, BIS, C, CP, EAS, FAO, FATF, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OPCW, Pacific Alliance (observer), PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
    chief of mission: Ambassador Ashok Kumar MIRPURI (since 24 July 2012)
    chancery: 3501 International Place NW, Washington, DC 20008
    telephone: [1] (202) 537-3100
    FAX: [1] (202) 537-0876
    consulate(s) general: San Francisco
    consulate(s): New York
    chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Stephanie SYPTAK-RAMNATH (since 20 January 2017)
    embassy: 27 Napier Road, Singapore 258508
    mailing address: FPO AP 96507-0001
    telephone: [65] 6476-9100
    FAX: [65] 6476-9340
    two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and white; near the hoist side of the red band, there is a vertical, white crescent (closed portion is toward the hoist side) partially enclosing five white five-pointed stars arranged in a circle; red denotes brotherhood and equality; white signifies purity and virtue; the waxing crescent moon symbolizes a young nation on the ascendancy; the five stars represent the nation's ideals of democracy, peace, progress, justice, and equality
    lion, merlion (mythical half lion-half fish creature), orchid; national colors: red, white
    name: "Majulah Singapura" (Onward Singapore)
    lyrics/music: ZUBIR Said
    note: adopted 1965; first performed in 1958 at the Victoria Theatre, the anthem is sung only in Malay
  • Economy :: SINGAPORE

  • Singapore has a highly developed and successful free-market economy. It enjoys a remarkably open and corruption-free environment, stable prices, and a per capita GDP higher than that of most developed countries. Unemployment is very low. The economy depends heavily on exports, particularly of consumer electronics, information technology products, medical and optical devices, pharmaceuticals, and on its vibrant transportation, business, and financial services sectors.
    The economy contracted 0.6% in 2009 as a result of the global financial crisis, but has continued to grow since 2010. Growth in 2014-16 was slower than during the previous decade, at under 3% annually, largely a result of soft demand for exports amid a sluggish global economy and weak growth in Singapore’s manufacturing sector.
    The government is attempting to restructure Singapore’s economy by weaning its dependence on foreign labor, addressing weak productivity growth, and increasing Singaporean wages. Singapore has attracted major investments in advanced manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, and medical technology production and will continue efforts to strengthen its position as Southeast Asia's leading financial and technology hub. Singapore is a member of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership negotiations with the nine other ASEAN members plus Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea, and New Zealand. In 2015, Singapore formed, with the other ASEAN members, the ASEAN Economic Community.
    $487.9 billion (2016 est.)
    $478.3 billion (2015 est.)
    $469.4 billion (2014 est.)
    note: data are in 2016 dollars
    country comparison to the world: 41
    $296.6 billion (2016 est.)
    2% (2016 est.)
    1.9% (2015 est.)
    3.6% (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 136
    $87,100 (2016 est.)
    $86,500 (2015 est.)
    $85,800 (2014 est.)
    note: data are in 2016 dollars
    country comparison to the world: 7
    46% of GDP (2016 est.)
    46.1% of GDP (2015 est.)
    46.4% of GDP (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 2
    household consumption: 36.1%
    government consumption: 10.8%
    investment in fixed capital: 23.4%
    investment in inventories: 2%
    exports of goods and services: 176.9%
    imports of goods and services: -149.2% (2016 est.)
    agriculture: 0%
    industry: 26.6%
    services: 73.4% (2016 est.)
    orchids, vegetables; poultry, eggs; fish, ornamental fish
    electronics, chemicals, financial services, oil drilling equipment, petroleum refining, rubber processing and rubber products, processed food and beverages, ship repair, offshore platform construction, life sciences, entrepot trade
    1% (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 145
    3.661 million
    note: excludes non-residents (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 97
    agriculture: 0.96%
    industry: 15.5%
    services: 83.5%
    note: excludes non-residents (2016)
    2.1% (2016 est.)
    1.9% (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 13
    NA%
    lowest 10%: 1.7%
    highest 10%: 26% (2016)
    45.8 (2016)
    46.3 (2015)
    country comparison to the world: 39
    revenues: $46.86 billion
    expenditures: $44.83 billion
    note: expenditures include both operational and development expenditures (2016 est.)
    15.8% of GDP (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 180
    0.7% of GDP (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 22
    110.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
    104.7% of GDP (2015 est.)
    note: Singapore's public debt consists largely of Singapore Government Securities (SGS) issued to assist the Central Provident Fund (CPF), which administers Singapore's defined contribution pension fund; special issues of SGS are held by the CPF, and are non-tradable; the government has not borrowed to finance deficit expenditures since the 1980s; Singapore has no external public debt
    country comparison to the world: 9
    1 April - 31 March
    -0.8% (2016 est.)
    -0.5% (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 12
    1.17% (2016 est.)
    1.21% (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 124
    5.4% (31 December 2016 est.)
    5.35% (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 133
    $115.1 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $113.5 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 33
    $409.9 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $380.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 26
    $353.7 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $344.6 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 33
    $654.8 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $640 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    $752.8 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 17
    $56.5 billion (2016 est.)
    $53.76 billion (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 9
    $353.3 billion (2016 est.)
    $377.1 billion (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 13
    machinery and equipment (including electronics and telecommunications), pharmaceuticals and other chemicals, refined petroleum products, foodstuffs and beverages
    China 13.7%, Hong Kong 11.5%, Malaysia 10.8%, Indonesia 8.2%, US 6.9%, Japan 4.4%, South Korea 4.1% (2015)
    $271.3 billion (2016 est.)
    $294.5 billion (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 15
    machinery and equipment, mineral fuels, chemicals, foodstuffs, consumer goods
    China 14.2%, US 11.2%, Malaysia 11.2%, Japan 6.3%, South Korea 6.1%, Indonesia 4.8% (2015)
    $249.7 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $247.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 12
    $467.4 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $465.5 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 27
    $1.041 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $978.4 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 11
    $673 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
    $625.3 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 15
    Singapore dollars (SGD) per US dollar -
    1.379 (2016 est.)
    1.3748 (2015 est.)
    1.3748 (2014 est.)
    1.2671 (2013 est.)
    1.25 (2012 est.)
  • Energy :: SINGAPORE

  • electrification - total population: 100% (2016)
    49.38 billion kWh (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 53
    46.4 billion kWh (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 51
    0 kWh (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 198
    0 kWh (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 201
    13 million kW (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 53
    97.1% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 60
    0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 181
    0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 202
    2.9% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 74
    0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 193
    11,500 bbl/day (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 65
    834,700 bbl/day (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 15
    0 bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 193
    1.02 million bbl/day (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 21
    1.292 million bbl/day (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 18
    1.535 million bbl/day (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 5
    2.18 million bbl/day (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 3
    0 cu m (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 127
    11.34 billion cu m (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 46
    0 cu m (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 181
    11.25 billion cu m (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 26
    0 cu m (1 January 2015 es)
    country comparison to the world: 195
    205 million Mt (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 28
  • Communications :: SINGAPORE

  • total subscriptions: 2,021,500
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 36 (July 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 58
    total: 8.211 million
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 145 (July 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 92
    general assessment: excellent service
    domestic: excellent domestic facilities; combined fixed-line and mobile-cellular teledensity more than 180 telephones per 100 persons; multiple providers of high-speed Internet connectivity
    international: country code - 65; numerous submarine cables provide links throughout Asia, Australia, the Middle East, Europe, and US; satellite earth stations - 4; supplemented by VSAT coverage (2015)
    state controls broadcast media; 8 domestic TV stations operated by MediaCorp which is wholly owned by a state investment company; broadcasts from Malaysian and Indonesian stations available; satellite dishes banned; multi-channel cable TV service available; a total of 18 domestic radio stations broadcasting with MediaCorp operating more than a dozen and another 4 stations are closely linked to the ruling party or controlled by the Singapore Armed Forces Reservists Association; many Malaysian and Indonesian radio stations are available
    .sg
    total: 4.659 million
    percent of population: 82.1% (July 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 73
  • Transportation :: SINGAPORE

  • number of registered air carriers: 5
    inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 197
    annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 33,290,544
    annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 6,154,365,275 mt-km (2015)
    9V (2016)
    9 (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 158
    total: 9
    over 3,047 m: 2
    2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
    914 to 1,523 m: 1
    under 914 m: 1 (2013)
    gas 122 km; refined products 8 km (2013)
    total: 3,425 km
    paved: 3,425 km (includes 161 km of expressways) (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 163
    total: 1,599
    by type: bulk carrier 247, cargo 109, carrier 6, chemical tanker 256, container 339, liquefied gas 131, petroleum tanker 436, refrigerated cargo 13, roll on/roll off 5, vehicle carrier 57
    foreign-owned: 966 (Australia 12, Bangladesh 1, Belgium 1, Bermuda 25, Brazil 9, Chile 6, China 29, Cyprus 6, Denmark 149, France 3, Germany 32, Greece 22, Hong Kong 46, India 21, Indonesia 60, Italy 5, Japan 164, Malaysia 27, Netherlands 1, Norway 153, Russia 2, South Africa 13, South Korea 3, Sweden 11, Switzerland 3, Taiwan 77, Thailand 33, UAE 10, UK 6, US 36)
    registered in other countries: 344 (Australia 2, Bahamas 7, Bangladesh 7, Belize 4, Cambodia 3, Cyprus 1, France 3, Honduras 11, Hong Kong 13, Indonesia 46, Italy 1, Kiribati 9, Liberia 22, Malaysia 13, Maldives 4, Malta 4, Marshall Islands 30, Mongolia 3, North Korea 1, Panama 92, Philippines 1, Saint Kitts and Nevis 10, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 5, Sierra Leone 9, Thailand 1, Tuvalu 19, US 16, Vanuatu 2, unknown 5) (2010)
    country comparison to the world: 6
    major seaport(s): Singapore
    container port(s) (TEUs): Singapore (30,922,000) (2015)
    LNG terminal(s) (import): Singapore
    the International Maritime Bureau reports the territorial and offshore waters in the South China Sea as high risk for piracy and armed robbery against ships; numerous commercial vessels have been attacked and hijacked both at anchor and while underway; hijacked vessels are often disguised and cargo diverted to ports in East Asia; crews have been murdered or cast adrift; in 2014, 8 commercial vessels were attacked in the Singapore Straits
  • Military and Security :: SINGAPORE

  • 3.35% of GDP (2016)
    3.16% of GDP (2015)
    3.11% of GDP (2014)
    3.09% of GDP (2013)
    3.17% of GDP (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 15
    Singapore Armed Forces: Army, Navy, Air Force (includes Air Defense) (2013)
    18-21 years of age for male compulsory military service; 16 1/2 years of age for volunteers; 2-year conscript service obligation, with a reserve obligation to age 40 (enlisted) or age 50 (officers) (2012)
  • Transnational Issues :: SINGAPORE

  • disputes persist with Malaysia over deliveries of fresh water to Singapore, Singapore's extensive land reclamation works, bridge construction, and maritime boundaries in the Johor and Singapore Straits; in 2008, ICJ awarded sovereignty of Pedra Branca (Pulau Batu Puteh/Horsburgh Island) to Singapore, and Middle Rocks to Malaysia, but did not rule on maritime regimes, boundaries, or disposition of South Ledge; Indonesia and Singapore continue to work on finalization of their 1973 maritime boundary agreement by defining unresolved areas north of Indonesia's Batam Island; piracy remains a problem in the Malacca Strait
    drug abuse limited because of aggressive law enforcement efforts, including carrying out death sentences; as a transportation and financial services hub, Singapore is vulnerable, despite strict laws and enforcement, as a venue for money laundering