What's News: December 31, 2015

BTO project Tampines Greenleaf.
BTO project Tampines Greenleaf. PHOTO: ST FILE


More BTO flats next year

The HDB will supply some 18,000 Build-To-Order flats next year to meet rising demand fuelled by recent policy changes that have made more people eligible for new flats. This is about 3,000 more than the number launched this year, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong yesterday.


China-Taiwan hotline chat

In their first-ever hotline call, China and Taiwan exchanged New Year greetings. With Taiwan's presidential election next month likely to throw up a pro-independence leader, cross-strait relations look set to enter a phase of uncertainties and tensions in the new year.



Comeback after 're-education'

A former right-hand man of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was given access back into his inner circle, signalling that Mr Kim may be taking a softer approach after earning a reputation for ruthlessness. Mr Choe Ryong Hae's (above) return to power came after he was reportedly purged and sent to a farm for "re-education."


Big nations eyeing Antarctica

Antarctica has become the latest site of geopolitical contest , with Russia building a church and India and China building bases there. While some ventures focus on the resources there, others are focused on longer-term payoffs.


Low expectations are limiting

When the N-level results were released, some parents said teachers had told their kids not to try for the O levels, but to go to the Institute of Technical Education. Senior Education Correspondent Sandra Davie wonders if teachers know that low expectations can limit students' performance.

Mr Poccianti (left) and Mr Sabatini at Karakul Lake in Tajikistan. They drove through 28 countries in four months. PHOTO: COURTESY OF MICHELE SABATINI


Italian duo complete 10,000km road trip to Singapore

It took four months, in which time they visited 28 countries, but two Italian students have finally finished the drive from their Florence home to Singapore. Mr Cesare Poccianti and Mr Michele Sabatini, both 23, decided to make the 10,000km trip to follow in the tracks of two British students who made a similar journey 60 years ago.


Easier to find airport trolleys

Travellers at Changi Airport should find it easier to locate a baggage trolley, thanks to a new tracking system. Ground supervisors are being given iPads that update the number of trolleys available in each bay so they can respond quickly.


Noble's rating cut to junk

It was a rough ending to the year for Noble Group, after Moody's down- graded its credit rating to junk status yesterday. The move sparked a 9 per cent fall in Noble's share price. For most of the year, the commodity trader was fending off accusations from a website that it had been cooking its books.


S'pore team for Asean league

The Football Association of Singapore believes the standard of play among local footballers can be improved if a side is fielded in the Asean Super League.

But some members of the Singapore football fraternity have doubts and do not agree that the regional league, set to kick off in 2017, is the solution.



Lambert on controversy

American singer Adam Lambert says he does not "do controversy on purpose". He was speaking at a press conference yesterday in response to last month's petition drama over his performance at Mediacorp's New Year's Eve concert. He added that he had created the show "especially for Singapore", "to speak to as many different people as possible".


TV star caught with child porn

Actor Mark Salling, one of the stars of the hit television show Glee, was arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of possessing child pornography. The celebrity news website TMZ.com said the authorities had found more than 1,000 images of "child sexual exploitation" on Salling's computer. D12

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 31, 2015, with the headline 'What's News: December 31, 2015'. Print Edition | Subscribe