Singapore is a wealthy city state in south-east Asia. Once a British colonial trading post, today it is a thriving global financial hub and described as one of Asia’s economic “tigers”. It is also renowned for its conservatism and strict local laws and the country prides itself on its stability and security.
Chinese account for more than 75% of Singapore’s multi-racial population, with Malays and Indians making up much of the remainder.
Densely-populated, most of its people live in public-housing tower blocks. Its trade-driven economy is heavily supported by foreign workers. In 2013, the government forecast that by 2030, immigrants will makeup more than 50% of the population.
The People’s Action Party has dominated politics since the country declared independence from Malaysia in 1965. Issues such as the rising cost of living, immigration and income inequality are major challenges facing the government.
- Republic Singapore
- Capital: Singapore
- Population 5.3 million
- Area 660 sq km (255 sq miles)
- Major languagesEnglish, Malay, Mandarin, Tamil
- Major religions Taoism, Buddhism, Islam, Christianity, Hinduism
- Life expectancy 79 years (men), 84 years (women)
- Currency Singapore dollar