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Estimated population of Singapore citizens and permanent residents - 3,163,500 as at June 1998.

Chinese                     77%

Malays                      14%

Indians                     7.6%

Other ethnic groups 1.4%

Working Language: English

Other official languages: Mandarin, Malay & Tamil.

Planners expect the population of Singapore to reach 5.5 million by 2040 or 2050, taking into account an expected increase in the number of foreigners working here. From just 3 million in 1990, the number has swelled to 3.9 million today, including 700 000 foreigners.

 

The weather TODAY: Showers with thunder expected in the late afternoon and early evening over many areas.  High tide 7.13 am 2.3m  9.58 pm 2.3m   Sunrise 7.10 am Sunset 7.17 pm Moonrise  4.01 pm  Moonset  3.34 am   PSI: 55 (moderate) Temp: 24-33  degrees Celsius (updated daily at 6am Singapore time)    

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    Get For Me: Mid-Week Banking Column

     Remittances: Bank Drafts

     Buying a bank draft is a lot cheaper than sending a telegraphic transfer. You do not incur any cable charges. You just need to pay the bank a commission of one-eighth percent of the draft amount you are sending. There is always a minimum commission. This commission amount varies from bank to bank. Malayan Banking Berhad, for instance, charges a minimum commission of S$20. The cheapest rate can be obtained at Singapore Post. But, bear in mind that only selected post office branches, such as Killiney Road, Tangs, Toa Payoh Central and Orchard (Takashimaya Shopping Centre), offer such a service.

     The common currencies for drafts are US dollar (USD), British pound (GBP), Australian dollar (AUD), Canadian dollar (CAD), New Zealand dollar (NZD) and Malaysian Ringgit (MYR). If you are not paying for the draft in Singapore dollars but in the currency that you are sending, eg. using USD to pay for a USD bank draft, then in addition to the commission, you need to pay another commission called Commission In Lieu Of Exchange. This is because by not buying the foreign currency from the bank, you have deprived the bank the chance to earn from selling you the foreign currency.

     You can get the bank to send the draft for you or you can post it yourself. As the draft is sent by post, it takes some time for the draft to reach the beneficiary (the one you are paying). So, it helps a lot if you can find out which bank branch is nearest to the beneficiary. This is so that you can get your bank to pay the money through that bank branch. Otherwise, your bank will just type in a correspondent bank branch most convenient to it and this can mean the correspondent bank may be far from the beneficiary's town.

     If this happens, when the beneficiary receives the draft you sent him/her, and then banks it in (he/she can't cash it because the bank branch is too far away to visit), it may take anywhere from a week to two weeks for the proceeds to be credited to his/her account.

     So the time taken from the moment you buy the draft to the day the beneficiary gets the money safely into his/her pocket can range from three weeks to a month or even longer. My advice, be prepared for this. If the money is needed urgently, please use telegraphic transfer to send it; it's worth the expense.

 

CALLING ALL BUSINESSES: If you want an official website, but cannot find the time or manpower to run it, come to us. Let us set up your official website on Get For Me Singapore. If you change your mind and want to maintain it yourself, we will give you a userID and a password to access your webpages. Click MORE...

NEW: Subscribe to our Weekly Internet Edition mailing list so that we can keep you informed of the latest happenings in Singapore. To subscribe, click SINGAPORE.

NEW: The new Cartier boutique has opened at Ngee Ann City #01-33 & #02-04. Tel: (65) 734 2427.

COMING SOON: New AsiaBuilders.com to provide comprehensive listings and product catalogues for the construction industry. To be launched end Apr 2000. Click AsiaBuilders.com for a preview.

COMING SOON: i-one.net to sell groceries online this month. Click i-One-Grocery for a preview.

COMING SOON: A new website which has an auction mall, shopping plaza and more. Click i-mall21.com for a preview.

COMING SOON: A new website IP3000.com which claims to have over 7 000 000 websites indexed, including Europe and Asia. It says it is the largest information and media search engine on the web. Click Internet Portal 3000 to get a preview now. 

POLL:  Do you like our new RED colour? Tell us. Click HERE.

NEW: New M1 shop opens at #B1-19/20 Paragon Shopping Centre. Other branches are at #B1-18-19 Tampines Mall and #01-16-17 West Mall.

NATIONAL SERVICE: Central Manpower Base (CMPB)  National service registration starts on Monday 31 Jan 2000 for all male Singapore citizens and permanent residents (PRs) born on or between 14 Jun 1982 and 12 Sep 1982, and ends on 10 Mar 2000. 

GET FOR ME:  Save the ACS (Anglo Chinese School) clock tower  An appeal for support.

NATIONAL LIBRARY BUILDING: National Development Minister Mah Bow Tan told Parliament on 7 Mar 2000 that the National Library Building in Stamford Road would have to go.

BOOKS:  Top Ten KINOKUNIYA Bestsellers   Top Ten MPH Bestsellers   Top Ten BORDERS Bestsellers   Top Ten TIMES Bestsellers  Shows the top ten fiction and non-fiction titles sold at these bookstores last week.

MUSIC:  Top 10 Albums Of the Week

SHOWS: Top Ten Shows  Features the current popular movies screened in local cinemas.  Movies  Lists the current movies showing in local cinemas.

GOVERNMENT: Singapore Government Website  Ministry Of Education  Police 

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:  Low Lying Areas In Singapore  Lists the flood-prone areas in Singapore. Things you should know  Tells you things you need to be aware of. 

ANNOUNCEMENTS: We are now hosted with WEBVISIONS.COM.

EXPATRIATES: EscapeArtist.Com  The website on overseas living for international job seekers and expatriates.  ExpatSingapore  For expatriates planning to relocate to Singapore. Provides excellent information on Singapore.  ContactSingapore  Step-by-step guide to applying for a job, getting an employment pass, remuneration structure and corporate culture.

TOURISTS: Tourism Board  Tourist Arrival Statistics

USEFUL WEBSITES: AtoZasia.com  For jobs, properties, shopping, food and auctions. Catcha.com.sg  A Singapore search engine.

GET FOR ME: New Books

ON SALE NOW AT LEADING BOOKSTORES

Singapore: A Pictorial History 1819-2000

By Gretchen Liu

Price: S$61.70  (excludes shipping)

The road shown on the front cover was Holloway Lane. It has recently gone the way of the Dodo and in its place is an open ground awaiting redevelopment. In the background is St Joseph's Church in Queen's Street.

The picture of the front cover of the book has been posted here with the kind permission of the publisher, Editions Didier Millet Singapore.

Search, discover and win S$500 cash. Every month.

Join Lycos Asia's online quiz at www.lycosasia.com.sg now.

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News Flash        

Today Thursday 16 Mar 2000

In Singapore

Government looks to non-grads to boost births.

Control of the local media must remain in local hands and foreigners must not be allowed to use the media to influence domestic politics here, Minister for Information and the Arts Lee Yock Suan told parliament yesterday.

Singapore's first private university, the Singapore Management University (SMU), has received a one-time contribution of S$50 million for its endowment fund from the government yesterday, said DPM Tony Tan yesterday. The government will also give S$3 for every dollar the SMU raises for its endowment fund.

The Central Narcotics Bureau seized about 7 kg of heroin worth S$700 000 in a raid which ended yesterday.

The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) will provide free health screening for 500 000 people each year, in line with its shift from treatment to prevention.

 

Asia 

Kuala Lumpur: Former top cop Rahim Noor was sentenced to two month's jail and fined RM2000 (S$905) for assaulting Anwar Ibrahim.

Beijing: Premier Zhu Rongji yesterday warned Taiwanese voters to shun a pro-independence candidate in Saturday's presidential election and said they would regret an " impulse " vote.

Around the world

Miami, Florida: Vice President Al Gore and Texas Governor George W. Bush secured their parties' nominations after breezing through six southern primaries.

Washington: American high-tech billionaire Michael Saylor is to donate US$100 million (S$170 million) as a downpayment towards creating an online university that he says will offer an " Ivy League - quality " education to anyone in the world - free.

Courtesy of The Straits Times

News updated by 8.00 am daily.

Singapore's water is clean and safe to drink from the tap. There is no need to boil it.

 

The Editor

Raymond Han

You can e-mail him at editor@getforme.com