When Singapore became an independent country in 1965, it had few friends and even fewer natural resources. How did it become one of the world's great trading and financial centres? The strategy, explained Mr Lee Kuan Yew, its first prime minister, was "to develop Singapore's only available natural resource: its people".
Today, Singapore's education system is considered the best in the world. It consistently ranks at the top of the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa), a triennial test of 15-year-olds in the main three categories of mathematics, reading and science.