Country Information Singapore


  • Capital: Singapore
  • Population: ca. 5.5 Mio.
  • Population Destiny: 7.654 Inhabitants per km²
  • Area: ca. 710 km², until 2030 it shall grow up to ca. 810 km²
  • Religion: ca. 33% Buddhism, 18% Christianity, 15% Islam
  • Official languages: English, Malay, Mandarin, Tamil
  • Government: Unitary parliamentary republic
  • Currency: Singapore dollar (SGD)
  • Climate: tropical and humid
  • Unemployment rate: 3.4 %

Geography

Singapore is located between Malaysia and Indonesia on the southern tip of the Malay peninsula, only 137 kilometers north of the equator. Singapore is an island nation consisting of the main island and 63 other small islands, of which only 20% are inhabited.The total area of Singapore is only 710 square meters, with a width from east to west of 42 km and from north to south 23 km. Thus Singapore is the smallest country in Southeast Asia. Approximately 55% of the city contains buildings and roads, the remaining 45% consists of parks, nature reserves and wetlands. The highest "mountain" of the island nation is the Bukit Timah Hill with its 176 meter height.

Population

The total population of Singapore is approximately 5.5 million and consists of diverse ethnic groups: the majority are Chinese, about 77%, followed by about 14% Malay and 8% Indians. Every woman in Singapore has an average of 1.2 children and so Singapore is one of the countries where the fewest children are born.

The people of Singapore are called "Singaporean". It is particularly important that you know the commonly used term “Singapuri” is incorrect. A high level of English language skills is very helpful in an internship in Singapore, English is the business language and lingua franca and every resident of Singapore is fluent. So besides working there you can also improve your English skills.

Economy and Politics

Within just a few years the Singapore government managed to take off from an emerging market to a developed country. Today Singapore is one of the so-called tiger economies with enormous economic growth.

The people of Singapore together make a gross domestic product of more than 130 billion euros (in 2008) and a gross domestic product per person of about 50,000 euros (2007), making them some of the wealthiest people in the world. The unemployment rate has fallen sharply in recent years, which again emphasizes the prosperity of the city-state. Singapore is also known as an international financial center and also a goods trader, the state has been very successful. Its port is one of the largest and most modern hubs in the world. In addition, the city is characterized by its cleanliness. This cleanliness would transmit to food and drinks which you can consume without hesitation. Even the tap water is safe to drink in Singapore.

Singapore is what many refer to as a very successful market economy. Since 1965, Singapore has been an independent republic and is now a parliamentary liberal democracy. Lee Kuan Yew was Singapore’s founding Prime Minister who, within only one generation, transformed Singapore from a Third World economy to First World status. His son, Lee Hsien Loong is current Prime Minister since 2004 and President Tony Tan has been in office since 2011. 

Historical Overview

  • 1819 Founding of modern Singapore, as comerical establishment of the UK and developing into a hub of Southeast Asia
  • 1874 Immigration from China and India
  • 1942 Japan occupies Singapore
  • 1946 Reoccupied by the British
  • 1965 Singapore becomes independent
  • 1971 British Troops leave Singapore
  • 2010 Singapore is appointed one of the richest countries in the world and becomes one of the safest destinations. Singapore becomes particularly well-known for its housing projects, the excellent education system and the high level of security that is present all over.

Climate

The climate in Singapore is tropical and humid. The average temperature most of the year is 28 degrees Celsius and humidity is high. Singapore is very close to the equator and therefore placed in the heart of the tropics. The so called rainy season begins in October and ends in February. Temperatures are slightly lower during this monsoon season. You won’t find four seasons like you do back home.

Caution to the left!

In Singapore you will find left-hand traffic and strict traffic control.

Any person who wants to own a car must first be submitted authorization with a Certificate of Entitlement. These privileges are auctioned-off and last for 10 years at a time. This is a the measure the Singaporean government has taken to keep the number of cars on the island as low as possible. In addition, the traffic in Singapore's city center is governed by an electronic toll system. Accordingly, car owners are held to strict regulations.

So it is not a mistake to rely on the close-knit, high-clocked and relatively inexpensive public transport. The subway and bus system are well developed. Although there are no fixed timetables, at every stop you are given a time rate.