Permits & Passes
Authority of Singapore celebrates 30th anniversary
from Deputy Prime Minister LEE Hsien Loong's
keynote address to a conference to
commemorate the MAS's 30th anniversary
Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) was born
in turbulent times in 1971. Then, The US dollar was
under intense pressure, due to mounting inflation and
balance of payments problems brought on by the Vietnam
War and Great Society programmes.
MAS has three responsibilities:
ensuring a strong and credible currency as one of the
key pillars of macroeconomic policy
overseeing the financial sector
promoting the development of the financial industry
August 1971, just months after MAS was formed, the US
suspended convertibility of the US dollar into gold,
plunging international currency markets into turmoil.
In June 1973, the Bretton Woods system of fixed
exchange rates finally collapsed, and the Singapore
dollar was floated.
a result, the Singapore Government enshrined a strong
and credible currency as one of the key pillars of
macroeconomic policy, and charged MAS with the
responsibility of ensuring it. Tight fiscal
discipline, a healthy balance of payments, and a
vibrant Singapore economy underpinned the steady
strengthening of the Singapore dollar.
With the progressive dismantling of exchange controls
in the 1970s, MAS maintained an explicit policy of not
encouraging the internationalisation of the Singapore
dollar. It limited the extension of bank credit in
Singapore dollars to non-residents except for economic
activity, and buttressed this with some restrictions
on interbank Singapore dollar derivatives, such as
currency and interest rate swaps and options, which
might have helped financial players to leverage or
hedge their positions. This policy made it harder for
would be speculators to short the Singapore dollar,
and signalled unambiguously the MAS's disapproval of
Until recently, MAS did not reveal its view of the
exchange rate, what it had done, or what it intended
to do. But going forward, MAS recognises the need to
be more communicative and less opaque about its
exchange rate policy. Hence it has been making
half-yearly monetary policy statements announcing our
prevailing policy stance. It has also published the
movements of the trade-weighted Singapore dollar,
hitherto a closely guarded secret. It envisages that
if market participants and the public understand its
policy stance better, there will be less uncertainty,
and policy implementation will be more effective.
MAS has reviewed and refined its policy on the non-internationalisation
of the Singapore dollar policy, and has liberalised
it, leaving only the most essential restrictions in
place. This has enabled the bond market to take off.
challenges lie ahead. The MAS has to manage exchange
rate policy in an increasingly volatile market, build
a sound and responsive regulatory environment that
allows the financial industry to thrive, and promote
Singapore as a financial centre even in the midst of
adverse external conditions.
MAS will groom a corps of competent and committed
economists, supervisors, and investment managers
within MAS. But this will not be sufficient. It also
has to reinforce its team with talent from industry
and abroad. It already has foreign and mid-career
professionals among its ranks, but it must attract
more such persons. Only by building a truly
world-class MAS team, will it succeed in its mission -
to promote macro-economic stability, and a sound and
progressive financial centre.
Full Speech by DPM LEE Hsien Loong
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Holidays NATIONAL DAY is
the next public holiday. It falls on Thursday 9 August 2001.
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& Other Pieces - The Music & Lyrics of Marc
CHAN Yew Jin
Reverie String Quartet - Clement LIM (violin), WONG Yeang
Chuan (guitar), Tracy CHIA (alto), Nadia TAN (soprano), Dawn
& Other Pieces" is the debut concert of young
Singaporean composer and lyricist Marc CHAN Yew Jin. The title
piece, a fusion between the classical art song and musical
theatre, is a song cycle that celebrates the most enviable
aspect of birds - flight. And coincident with that idea is the
idea of freedom. Some of the songs are settings of text by
various poets, such as Maya Angelou and Alfian Sa'at. The
other songs that complete the cycle have original lyrics by
Marc. The evening will also see the premiere of instrumental
works written in the past year. These include a suite of three
pieces for toy piano, a romance for violin and piano, and four
nocturnes for guitar.
|4 Aug 2001
7.30pm SPH Auditorium, Young
Musicians' Society, 54 Waterloo Street (beside Singapore Art
S$11 each (concession for students at S$10) available at all
TicketCharge outlets. Call (65) 296 2929 or click HERE!
For more information about the concert, please e-mail Marc at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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