Forum: Govt has priorities other than COE system to focus on now to keep Singapore competitive

There are two sides to every argument put forward to try and tweak the vehicle quota system (Looking at merits of 5 popular ideas to improve COE system, July 25).

The authorities should not be overly influenced by every suggestion, as some may come from groups with different vested interests.

The certificate of entitlement system exists not just to generate revenue, but also to limit the number of cars so that the roads will not be too congested and adversely affect the economy.

The Government has other priorities to focus on to keep Singapore competitive in this uncertain world, as the Covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine are still ongoing.

Let us not distract the authorities from doing a good job in looking after the interests of all Singaporeans rather than just vehicle owners.

Let us be realistic and recognise that Singapore is a small city state, and there are competing land use needs.

I have visited many places like mainland Europe, the United States and Britain, and I dare say our public transport system is one of the best in the world in terms of connectivity, cleanliness and timely arrival of trains and buses.

Owning a car is a necessity if you live in a big country because you need to travel long distances to get from one point to another. But in compact Singapore, taking public transport is convenient and has many advantages - you can read, plan your day or even take a short nap.

My only regret is that I realised the benefits of public transport only after 40 years of owning a car. But as they say, better late than never.

Harry Ong Heng Poh

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