Monday, December 29, 2008

Today's Singapore News

The following are stories that are making the headlines over at Topix Singapore News today, edited by yours truly.

-Boom to gloom for fresh grads: For fresh graduates, 2008 was supposed to be a year full of promise but now young people are finding themselves stuck with pay cuts and lower bonuses - that is, if they are lucky enough to be employed at all.
-Singapore government to kick-start deferred property projects: Development projects put on hold in Singapore because of the global financial crisis are to be re-started in a bid to help the struggling property sector.
-Singapore's private home sales, prices & rents fall sharply: Private home sales in Singapore have taken a sharp fall in the fourth quarter of this year. Only 112 private homes were sold in the primary market in October, and 192 units sold in November.
-Means testing feasible even during downturn?: The government is set to implement means-testing next month. The Health Ministry says a patient who is retrenched at the time of hospitalisation will enjoy full subsidy using means-testing.
-Should handphone, Net contracts be shorter?: Long contracts for handphone and Internet broadband subscriptions may soon be history. And if the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) has its way, the penalties that home subscribers pay for breaking these contracts early will be pegged to the length of time left on them.
-Households to receive $125m in rebates: More than 780,000 eligible HDB households will receive $125 million worth of Utilities-Save (U-Save) rebates in 2009. The rebates will be given out in January and July 2009.
-Singapore the first in Asia to use limb-lengthening technology for those wanting to be taller: It was initially devised as a method of leg lengthening for those with congenital growth abnormalities or trauma to the lower limbs. However, since it was introduced in 2001, Fitbone surgery has without much fanfare, slipped into the realm of cosmetics.
-Shorter wait for trains: Commuters on the Circle Line should find it a shorter wait for trains with the newest signalling system from Alstom, the French transport company which is also building the trains for the new SMRT line.
-Help for retrenched workers: The South West Community Development Council (CDC) has rolled out a series of aid schemes to help retrenched workers living in the south-western parts of Singapore.
-More parents sending children to art schools despite downturn: More parents are sending their children to art schools. The number of children competitions has been steadily increasing over the years as more performance schools open and more sponsors jump on board.
-New ez-link cards let you do more: Consumers will now be able to use a new ez-link card to do anything from paying for train and bus fares to Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) fees.
-No timeframe on when Flyer can reopen: Second Minister for Home Affairs K Shanmugam says it's not possible to provide a timeframe on when the Singapore Flyer's license will be reinstated.

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