Brain Food: Us and Them - Singapore

This year, Singapore celebrates its 40th year of independence from the Malaysian Federation. Founded as a British trading colony in 1819, it has the world's busiest port (in tonnage handled) and export remains the country's lifeblood, especially electronic goods. Singapore is one of the most prosperous countries in the world, despite its vulnerability to the fortunes of the tech market.

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

COST OF LIVING

Manufacturing is the country's most important sector, followed by business and financial services, and the wholesale and retail trade, though oil refining, chemicals and pharmaceuticals are becoming increasingly significant. Singapore has a highly industrialised, free-market economy and a per capita GDP comparable to that of west European countries. Its much-envied public transport system, the hub of which is the Mass Rapid Transport overground and underground train network, puts London's creaky Tube to shame.

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