SINGAPORE: The Great Singapore Sale (GSS) marks its Silver Jubilee this year, but one can hardly tell while taking a walk along Orchard Road — Singapore’s prime shopping belt — or visiting any suburban malls.There is barely a buzz since the annual two-month campaign started on Jun 8, and some shopping centres are half-empty even during weekends.With the Singapore retail scene under siege from the rise of e-commerce, the GSS has remained stuck in time, in the words of shoppers, retailers and experts, and has failed to evolve with latest consumer trends.In 2016, after three consecutive years of decline in retail sales during the GSS period, Singapore Retailers Association (SRA) president R Dhinakaran publicly broached the need to re-examine the GSS’ direction, as he revealed plans in a media interview to hold discussions with the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) to see “if there is a point in continuing (the GSS), or whether there is a need to reformat … [Read more...] about The Big Read: The not-so-Great Singapore Sale — after 25 years, once-premier shopping event is now left in the dust
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SINGAPORE - Electric vehicles are unpopular the world over, not only in Singapore - and the reason goes beyond cost, said The Straits Times senior transport correspondent Christopher Tan in a reply on Sunday (June 3) to Mr Elon Musk, chief executive of electric car maker Tesla. "Their restricted range and limited product choice are two other main reasons," he said, a day after he penned an open letter refuting Mr Musk's comment that the Singapore Government is not supportive of electric cars. Even Norway, which doles out the heaviest subsidies for electric vehicles, has proposed to pull back on tax incentives on electric cars weighing more than two tonnes, Mr Tan noted. Mr Tan also said "Singapore is not exactly supportive of any car, regardless of their fuel type". However, the country still recognises that electric cars are cleaner where they operate, which is why most of them will qualify for tax breaks of up to $20,000, he added. Mr Tan was responding to Mr Musk's take on the … [Read more...] about Unpopularity of electric vehicles goes beyond cost: Christopher Tan’s reply to Tesla’s Elon Musk
SINGAPORE - Condominium owners who want to rent out their property for short-term stays can do so if owners holding on to at least 80 per cent of the development's share value agree to allow such rentals, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) has proposed. This was one of the suggestions in a long-awaited public consultation on Airbnb-style home-sharing launched by the URA on Monday (April 16), which aims to bring Singapore one step closer to finding a balance between nurturing disruptive industries and regulating them. It proposed a new category of short-term accommodation for private residential properties, which existing developments can adopt if they have the owners' consent and are registered as such. In its proposed consultation documents, URA said the framework will look at how short-term stays can be applied to developments with common property, such as condominiums, as well as other aspects including fire safety … [Read more...] about URA suggests 80% consent rule for condos to offer Airbnb-style home-sharing
For India to become a $5 trillion economy, the government needs to go from being a spender to an even greater enabler of businesses than it currently is. Debates about the appropriate level of government spending abound. The tight balance between spending to boost critical sectors versus managing a fiscal deficit is a tightrope the government must walk. Numbers such as the $526 billion infrastructure gap suggest that innovation in policy will be essential for India to truly bridge this gap, create jobs and generate growth. Our premise is that while spending by the government is important, it needs to focus much more on how to enable businesses, especially private investment in infrastructure. According to a World Bank report, government spending as a percentage of GDP has averaged at 10.29 percent between 1960 and 2016, with the number in 2016 being 11.65 percent. There is pressure around both the fiscal deficit and revenue deficit in India. In addition, no remarkable change in tax … [Read more...] about Will India emerge as $5 trillion economy?