Diasporas can spark new ideas, DPM Teo says at South Asia meeting

Singapore's multi-religious, multi-racial and multi-lingual make-up is a microcosm of what is happening worldwide, where individuals from various cultures and countries of origin work and interact, said Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean on Nov 21,
Singapore's multi-religious, multi-racial and multi-lingual make-up is a microcosm of what is happening worldwide, where individuals from various cultures and countries of origin work and interact, said Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean on Nov 21, 2013. -- ST FILE PHOTO: CAROLINE CHIA

SINGAPORE's multi-religious, multi-racial and multi-lingual make-up is a microcosm of what is happening worldwide, where individuals from various cultures and countries of origin work and interact, said Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean on Thursday.

Speaking at the South Asian Diaspora Convention held at Suntec, he said the Republic serves as a unique meeting place where "diasporas from different origins can make connections and form linkages with people from other parts of the world, sparking new ideas, creating new opportunities".

This exemplifies the positive role diasporas can play in bridging different parts of the world, said DPM Teo, adding that diasporas are now recognised as a significant resource and potential agent for socio-economic transformation.

He said there are currently about 67,000 foreign companies registered in Singapore. This includes some 6,000 from India, 7,000 for China, 4,000 from Japan, 12,000 from Europe and 4,000 from the United States.