What's News: December 7, 2017


$13b health budget by 2020

The annual budget for healthcare is predicted to hit at least $13 billion from 2020, said Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat. The Ministry of Health received $10 billion in this year's Budget, up from the $4 billion it received in 2010. Demand for improved medical technology is likely to grow as the population ages, said Mr Heng.


Advisories on dengue vaccine

Healthcare professionals in Singapore have all been issued with advisories on the risk of dengue vaccine Dengvaxia, said the Health Sciences Authority. This came after the vaccine's manufacturer warned that it may be harmful to people not previously infected by the virus.



Umno slams Mahathir legacy

Umno's longest-serving president, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (above), became the centre of attention at the party's annual assembly yesterday, as leaders lined up to dismantle "misplaced nostalgia" about him. They said the opposition alliance, now led by the former premier, offers false hope, and would endanger the political primacy of Malaysia's Malay-Muslim majority.


Row over manuka honey

Manuka honey has proved a money-spinner for beekeepers in Australia and New Zealand, but a push to trademark its name has sparked a row between the two countries. The fracas erupted when a New Zealand association applied for exclusive rights to market manuka honey in five countries.


Boost for educational equity

The Ministry of Education's move to give its kindergarten pupils priority admission to co-located primary schools aims to widen equitable access to pre-school and primary school, says senior education correspondent Sandra Davie.


Amazon Prime launched here

American e-commerce giant said that with the launch of its Prime membership programme for Singapore yesterday, unlimited free international shipping will now be exclusively a Prime member benefit. The Republic is the 16th country to have Amazon Prime.


Airshow to help start-ups fly

Besides exhibitors including Airbus, Boeing and Lockheed Martin, next year's Singapore Airshow, to be held from Feb 6 to Feb 11, will allow start-ups opportunities to pitch their business ideas to larger players in the industry.


Worries over ageing populace

An economist from United Overseas Bank has warned that next year marks an ominous turning point for Singapore's ageing population - the share of the population 65 years and older will match those younger than 15 for the first time. This will have implications for the Republic's tax and immigration policies, said Mr Francis Tan.


Russians slam Olympic ban

Russian politicians and athletes decried the International Olympic Committee's decision to ban the country from February's Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang over its state-sponsored doping programme. Though disappointed, they were not surprised. Meanwhile, clean athletes can take part under the Olympic flag.

Craig Robinson (left) and Adam Scott star in the TV comedy Ghosted. PHOTO: FOX ENTERTAINMENT GROUP


Ghost-busting laughs

Ghosted is a new TV comedy about two paranormal investigators, one of whom is a sceptic and the other, a believer. Despite the comparisons with Ghostbusters and The X-Files, its creators promise it will be different, borrowing instead from comedies such as Beverly Hills Cop and This Is The End.


Ideas for Christmas

We have gift guides and foodie recommendations for the season. http://str.sg/oZmU


Bitcoin is big

Five fortunes that have now been surpassed by the cryptocurrency's surge in value. http://str.sg/oZcF

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 07, 2017, with the headline 'What's News'. Print Edition | Subscribe