Bad News: It is smaller than Israel and Hong Kong. No natural resources. Even the hi-tech military has to depend on foreign food & water. Fresh water is imported from a single not-so-friendly country – Malaysia. The entire economy is an entrepôt, i.e. a trading center, or simply a warehouse, where merchandise can be imported and exported without paying import duties, often at a profit. Electricity production is entirely dependent on fossil fuels which will dry up in the next 50 years, in which case everything will have to be nuclear.
Birth rate is low – 9.34 births/1,000 population (2006 est.). Population is low – 4,492,150. Population Density is high – 16,392/sq MI which is higher than Kerala. Death rate is low – 4.28 deaths/1,000 population. So people are becoming older.
The government is trying to positioning itself to become a knowledge-based economy. So it is trying to import human resource. But it is hard because, the general misconception in the rest-of-the-world is that anything resembling a chewing gum can get you into trouble.
The government is hence trying to import youth through educational institutions. So it has subsidized tertiary education using Tuition Grants which require you to work in a Singapore registered company for 3 years. Full scholarships are still hard to come by, although most of the potential scholars like me would exhibit acts of reciprocative altruism for the greater good of the country upon getting one.
Good News: This place is a true utopia. It has an open business environment, relatively corruption-free and transparent democracy, stable prices, and one of the highest per capita GDP in the world which had a 7.7 percent growth last year. Singapore has been rated as the most business-friendly economy in the world. It has the largest and most efficient sea-ports in the world. The airport is also one of the largest in the world. Universities are rated one of the best in the world according to Times Education Supplement.
Possible Disaster scenarios in the next 50 years:
- Fossil Fuel shortage.
- Fresh water shortage.
- Disease ( H5N1, MDR TB)