What's News: July 26, 2018



$1.2b contract for 66 trains

A $1.2 billion contract to supply 66 new trains for the North-South and East-West MRT lines has been awarded to Canadian engineering giant Bombardier. Delivery of the trains will start from 2021, and all of them will be here by 2024. They will replace first-generation trains in service from the time the MRT started more than 30 years ago.


Aid for rental housing families

Important services such as education and healthcare will be made more readily available to families in rental housing under a new joint effort by the Ministry of Social and Family Development and the Ministry of National Development. Government agencies and volunteer welfare organisations will also work together more closely to understand the families' needs.


Debate over missing MPs

It is only the second week of Malaysia's new Parliament sitting, yet there have been complaints about too many ministers and MPs failing to sit in regularly when the Lower House is in session. The opposition Umno MPs highlighted this issue by posting on social media pictures of empty rows of Parliament benches.


Toll in Greece fire rises to 80

At least 80 people have been killed as at yesterday in a fire which ripped through a Greek coastal town, with dozens of people unaccounted for as forensic experts tried to identify victims, who were burnt alive. With most of the bodies charred badly, identification of the dead will be challenging, experts said.


When three is not enough

More couples are having four or more children. That won't shift the needle on baby numbers, but might act as a nudge to others to value parenting, says senior social affairs correspondent Theresa Tan.


Boost in pre-school places

There will be 2,600 more pre-school places by 2020 in Sengkang and Punggol, with five new large childcare centres being planned in the estates. Four centres will be in Sengkang, offering about 300 to 550 places each, and one in Punggol with 650 places.


Learn to fight fire at Vicom

Customers can attend a free fire-fighting course when they get their car inspected at Vicom's Sin Ming centre. There were 128 cases of reported vehicle fires in the first half of the year, up by more than 30 per cent in the same period last year.


Optimism on growth

Nine out of 10 middle-market firms are optimistic of seeing growth above the global average growth rate of 6 per cent, a survey from EY showed. Middle-market firms are those with sizeable annual revenues that fall centrally within the market in which they operate.


More fun at GetActive!

The third edition of GetActive! Singapore will feature more than 300 ground-up activities this year, as well as 12 sports festivals. There will also be unconventional activities such as parkour, paintball and abseiling.

Event venues include Chinatown, Little India, Geylang Serai and more. The programme runs from Saturday to Aug 9.

The Tale stars Laura Dern as Jennifer Fox, with Isabelle Nelisse as Fox's 13-year-old self. PHOTO: HBO ASIA


Sexual abuse tale hits screens

Based on the true story of film-maker Jennifer Fox, The Tale was one of the most controversial films at the Sundance Film Festival in January. It chronicles how Fox, who wrote and directed the film, realised in her 40s that she had been sexually abused as a child.


Making a difference

One was in and out of prison four times, the other spent more than five years in jail. Watch how they have turned their lives around. http://str.sg/oA6X


Pricey ice cream

How much would you pay for a dessert? New York's Baccarat Hotel is serving up Bear Extraordinaire, an opulent sundae that costs US$1,500 (S$2,042). http://str.sg/oAev

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 26, 2018, with the headline 'What's News'. Subscribe