Singapore English Essay
Singapore has emerged as a vital hub for South-East region of Asia. Moreover, it has had a dynamic economy from the past years having a strong service as well as a manufacturing sector. Most importantly, Singapore has had high per capita gross domestic product across the world. Research has indicated that its port, road systems and airport services are rated as among the best across the world. The nation’s economy has mostly been dependent on international trade with its major industries including financial services, petroleum refining, electronics, processed food as well as beverages, ship repair and electronics among many others (Hill & Lian, 2013). Therefore, Singapore is an economy of interests and this paper will look deep into the economy considering the country’s comparative advantages and disadvantages, major economic and political challenges and the most unique features of the nation as a whole.
Singapore’s Comparative Advantage and Disadvantage
In the recently provided report of 2013 representing the most competitive economy across the world, Singapore became number 2 as Switzerland was able to take position one due to its great economic competitive advantage. Singapore was proved in the World Economic Forum as one of the nations that has boasted its institutional frameworks as well as having an effective macroeconomic environment and a fiscal environment. It has also become evident that Singapore’s economic growth condition for the previous forty years has been founded on its exports of labor-intensive manufactured products to the world markets. This has been accompanied by its amicable technology as well as value added activities that have enabled the country to have comparative advantage shifts. Compared to Korea and Japan, Singapore has had economic developments that are substantially directed by the state altogether with features of a well managed regime of float currency. Compared to Hong Kong, the country has been based on capital flows and free trade. Looking at the past few years, Both Korea and Taiwan have decreased their nations’ role of economies whilst Hong Kong has remained as the worldwide freest economy. However, Singapore’s economy has continued to be strongly directed by the state as it has diversified into high value products and services with a great reliance on foreign workforce.
Despite the comparative advantages enjoyed by Singapore, there exists a comparative advantage in that a resource based advantage has emerged as not the only determinant of a nation’s international competitiveness altogether with its trade flows. It has become evident that time-tested maxims of the country’s economy tend to boil down to a single prognosis in that a nation cannot have everything despite having a small size and only limited resource constraints. Singapore has strived to achieve a comparative advantage in almost all of its sectors and this has pushed up its costs on resources (Hill & Lian, 2013). Most importantly, that has aggravated negative externalities including inflation as well as environmental degradation. This has reduced Singapore’s comparative advantage in general.
Economic and Political Challenges in Singapore
Despite the amicable developments in Singapore, it has also been facing both political and economic challenges that have been quoted as the most vital challenges in the country. With over 111,000 individuals without jobs, this has given rise to a high unemployment rate that has remained at 5.9% for a long period. Much of this unemployment is through structural employment. Most importantly, it has become evident that those that acquire jobs in the country are paid low wages that are only able to pay for their living. Moreover, globalization has hit Singapore at a bad corner. Despite its development through international trade, the country has not been able to reap the complete benefits from its exports since it has been importuning even the most crucial elements such as labor that it would otherwise acquire from its citizens (Johnson, 2010). Singapore’s open and little economy is vulnerable to occurring worldwide contagion influences. Its exports have decreased with the fall in recession of major nations across the world including the United States and Europe.
One of the major political challenges facing Singapore is the problem of making it an open society whereby citizens are allowed to have freedom of choosing their political ideologies. It has become clear that that can be difficult to achieve since the politics notable within the entire Ruling Party has been termed as illiberal. There exist tiered categories of membership whereby there are Elite members, General Party members and Cadres members. Singapore’s citizens have continued to be presented with inscrutable form of government.
Unique Characteristics of Singapore
Several features can be termed as making Singapore a unique country including categorizing it as a land of many contradictions, singlish language, food paradise, multi racial nation, government dominance, a unique political system, meritocracy, seat chopping and a land of acronyms. It has been termed as a land of many contradictions due to the fact that it is an open economy in spite of not being an open society. There is inadequate freedom of expression in the country. Singlish has emerged as a distorted form of language since many people in Singapore have been unable to master the original English language. Most importantly, Singapore has a wide range of food stuffs ranging from Chinese to Arabian food whilst some dishes are only uniquely from Singapore. Multi racism is evident in the nation with four official languages and many religious celebrations. The government has also taken great shares in the nation including in provision of public utilities, national careers, publications and telecommunication services (Johnson, 2010). Lastly is the nation’s ability to place too much emphasis on academic credentials as measures of merit that has developed into social class of scholars.