10 must-reads for today

Voters filling in ballot papers at a polling station in Yokohama during Japan's Upper House election yesterday.
Voters filling in ballot papers at a polling station in Yokohama during Japan's Upper House election yesterday.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

1 LDP wins Japan election

Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party was the big winner in yesterday's Upper House election, which had few surprises amid low voter turnout. The party's secretary-general said Prime Minister Shinzo Abe might seek another term as party chief beyond September 2021.

2 Births here hit 8-year low

The number of babies born here last year reached an eight-year low with 39,039 births, registering a 1.5 per cent drop from 2017. Singapore's total fertility rate dipped from 1.16 in 2017 to 1.14 last year, well below the replacement rate of 2.1.

3 US weighs in on stand-off

The US State Department has criticised an ongoing stand-off between Vietnam and China over Chinese operations in the South China Sea, urging Beijing to cease interfering with oil and gas activities in the disputed waters.

4 Duterte to address nation

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to tackle some unfinished business when he delivers his State of the Nation address today. It is expected to focus on policy agendas.

5 Looming conflict with Iran

Recent actions by Iran and the US have raised tensions in the Middle East. The parties involved have drawn lines in the sand, and all are keeping their fingers on the trigger, says global affairs correspondent Jonathan Eyal.

6 Dealing with growth slump

The recent slowdown in growth is the impetus needed to effect greater transformation of the economy, said labour chief Ng Chee Meng, urging companies and workers to seize the opportunities offered by disruptive technologies, and transform themselves to stay competitive.

7 Action on mozzie breeding

Some 1,200 enforcement actions were taken against households for mosquito breeding from January to last month, even as the number of dengue cases has continued to climb. The authorities uncovered 8,200 mosquito-breeding spots after more than 442,000 inspections.

8 Buyers snap up condo units

Buyers snapped up 80 per cent of the 200 units of One Pearl Bank released for sale over the weekend. The 99-year leasehold condominium, which has a total of 774 residential units, is being developed on the site of the former iconic Pearl Bank Apartments in Outram.

9 Poor start for Schooling

Olympic champion Joseph Schooling failed to qualify for the semi-finals of the 50m butterfly at the Fina World Championships in Gwangju, South Korea, yesterday when he clocked 23.73 seconds to finish seventh in his heat and 20th overall.

10 S'pore architecture awards

A home built on "stilts", a flying-saucer-like childcare centre and a conservation building that sits on a wedge-shaped site are among the projects lauded at this year's Singapore Institute of Architects Architectural Design Awards.


Walking on the Moon

Fifty years after men first walked on the Moon, there are plans to go back - this time to stay. We look back on the milestones in mankind's lunar missions, plans for the future and more. str.sg/moonlanding


Burger wars

The Sunday Times chomps through 12 burgers to find out which ones rise above the competition. http://str.sg/burger

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 22, 2019, with the headline '10 must-reads for today'. Print Edition | Subscribe