Wednesday, Sep 3, 2014Wednesday, Sep 3, 2014
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SINGAPORE's elderly citizens flocked to the doctor's or dentist's yesterday, brandishing their new red-and-white cards as subsidies at clinics islandwide kicked in for 450,000 pioneer generation members.

Top of The News

THE man in the street could soon be offered another avenue to grow his money: Investing in bonds.
HONG Kong's fractious relationship with its political masters in Beijing was thrown into relief, as a senior Chinese official arrived yesterday to explain the central government's stance on constitutional reform - but was assailed by hecklers and protesters instead.
WITH longer lifespans, Central Provident Fund (CPF) members should not aim to make withdrawals from their retirement funds at age 55, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on a radio programme last night.

Singapore

Almost a year after Singapore Airlines (SIA) axed non-stop flights to the United States, rival carriers like Cathay Pacific and Korean Air have been boosting services and growing market share.
More elderly flat owners are likely to be interested in the Lease Buyback Scheme if they have a choice of how many years of their lease to retain and how many to sell back to the Government, said property experts.
Angry about not striking the lottery, a man decided to vent his anger by striking a mother and daughter - who simply had the bad luck to be walking near him.

Asia

JAPAN and India have agreed to enhance their strategic partnership and boost economic and security ties in what is widely seen as a bid to counterbalance China's increasing influence in the region.
AFTER scoring a landslide election victory in May, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was jolted by a reversal of fortunes, winning just eight of 18 seats in local by-elections in recent weeks.
GWANGJU (South Korea) - After 250 South Korean high school students died in the sinking of the Sewol ferry in April, artist Hong Sung Dam lashed out at the political and business elite he considers responsible for the disaster.

World

US KHATYN (Russia) - Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli launched the construction of the first part of Gazprom's "Power of Siberia" pipeline that will bring Russian gas to China for the first time in 2019.
WASHINGTON - Thirty-six hours after the Obama administration banned importation of the classic brand of AK-47 assault rifles as part of sanctions against Russia, a Maryland dealer specialising in the weapon took stock of its inventory.
BAGHDAD - With American bombs raining down from the sky, Shi'ite militia fighters aligned with Iran battled Sunni extremists over the weekend, punching through their defences to break the weeks-long siege of Amerli, a cluster of farming villages whose Shi'ite residents faced possible slaughter.

Money

Shoebox apartments outside the city centre could lose their cachet once the flood of new homes hits the market next year. Experts note that tenants are enjoying greater choice, and that will only get better as the pool of available real estate deepens.
Thai beer baron Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi is eyeing United Engineers (UE), which will allow him to expand his property portfolio in Singapore, a market he knows well, say analysts.
DBS Bank has moved on two fronts to beef up its transaction banking segment: Recruiting a rival industry veteran, and sending a top gun to the US in a bid to enlarge its share of the sector.

Life!

Singaporeans with an interest in photography no longer have to travel halfway around the globe to get an eyeful of the big names of the genre.
American actors Elizabeth Rice and Matthew Settle have been confirmed as the leads in a horror movie directed by Kelvin Tong and to be set and filmed in Singapore.
Nobody needs to be afraid of the concert hall", is the refrain of Listen To The 20th Century.

Insight

NO DEGREE, no problem. Try telling that to corporate communications manager Vivien Tan. The 39-year-old had thought along those lines 23 years ago when, after her O levels, she chose to go to a polytechnic instead of a junior college and university like most of her classmates did, despite her 11-point aggregate.
LEARN-AS-YOU-WORK programmes are all well and good to boost employability, but it is an uphill task to alter people's entrenched mindset of "frontloading" education in order to get them to join the workforce earlier.
FOR the longest time, white-collar workers have been held in high regard in the workplace. They are paid more handsomely than their blue-collar counterparts, for a start.

Opinion

SINGAPORE'S electronics sector has taken another hit, with a report yesterday saying that American chipmaker Broadcom has moved some of its operations out of the Republic to Ireland.
ONE comment heard in the energetic debate over doctors' excessive charges was that only a small number indulged in the objectionable habit. Whatever the true scale, such conduct contributes to medical fee inflation, as fair-minded doctors have pointed out, to the credit of their profession. Rising health-care costs are common in all of the developed world - the United States is the outlier.
AS 16 million young adults in the United States set off for college this autumn, they are looking at some frightening statistics. Despite the ever-rising cost of getting a degree, one number stands out like a person shouting in a campus library: According to a recent poll conducted by AfterCollege, an online entry-level job site, 83 per cent of college seniors graduated without a job this spring.

Forum Letters

LAST Thursday's article ("Emotional barriers to retirement adequacy") gave a few reasons for the unpopularity of the Lease Buyback Scheme.
THE commentary ("Emotional barriers to retirement adequacy"; last Thursday) cited psychological barriers as a reason for the poor take-up of the Lease Buyback Scheme, and that there are other more "attractive" options for asset-rich, cash-poor Singaporeans to monetise their properties.
SINGAPOREANS are still very much into investing in real estate as they consider it a safe way to provide for their long-term financial needs.

Sports

LONDON - Manchester United yesterday agreed a dramatic season-long loan deal for Radamel Falcao, the prolific Monaco and Colombia striker.
LONDON - Arsene Wenger, the Arsenal manager, failed to offer guarantees that he will sign a striker before the transfer window shut last night, despite conceding that Yaya Sanogo's shortcomings in front of goal are becoming an increasing problem.
AS A striker myself, I keep an eye out on the forwards whenever I watch matches in the English Premier League (EPL).