What's News: November 25, 2016

Mr Rutte meeting Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday.
Mr Rutte meeting Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday.PHOTO: MINISTRY OF COMMUNICATIONS AND INFORMATION
Local actor Firdaus Rahman plays a young prisons officer in Boo Junfeng's Apprentice.
Local actor Firdaus Rahman plays a young prisons officer in Boo Junfeng's Apprentice.PHOTO: GOLDEN VILLAGE


Slow economic growth ahead

The Ministry of Trade and Industry said Singapore will likely avoid a technical recession this year, but growth will remain slow and 2017 will bring challenges. The ministry yesterday narrowed its growth forecast for this year, tipping growth of 1 per cent to 1.5 per cent for the full year, from an earlier estimate of 1 per cent to 2 per cent.


Stuck with Indian currency

Some people here are relying on friends and relatives heading to India to change 500 rupee (S$10) and 1,000 rupee currency notes for them. Money changers and Indian banks here stopped accepting the bills after India announced on Nov 8 that the central bank was abolishing the notes as legal tender. Indian citizens have until Dec 30 to exchange the bills.



Trump's Cabinet picks

United States President-elect Donald Trump has proved that his Cabinet is not just for "old white men" by bringing in two women - Ms Nikki Haley (photo) and Mrs Betsy DeVos. The latest appointments, and the possible addition of an African American, may signal that Mr Trump is open to taking critics on board and helping heal internal party rifts.


Free trade generates long-term growth: Dutch PM

Britain will pay a heavy price for leaving the European Union, said Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, who is here as the speaker for the Singapore Lecture series. Mr Rutte said free trade creates more jobs and generates long-term economic growth. After Brexit, Britain has forecast that its economic growth will nearly halve and the pound has become weaker. 


Counting the costs of Brexit

Financial experts speculating on Brexit's impact on the British economy now have at least a partial answer, after the British government announced it would need £122 billion (S$217 billion) over the next five years to cover the extra government borrowing.


Modi's high-stakes gamble

With corruption eating away at India's vitals, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's bold bid to fight it by cancelling high-value currency shows his resolve. If badly handled though, it may affect his re-election in 2019, writes Associate Editor for Global Affairs Ravi Velloor.


All-day access for PMDs

From Dec 1, commuters will be able to take foldable bikes and personal mobility devices (PMDs) on board buses and trains at all hours of the day as part of a six-month trial. The move, first mooted in July, is part of the push for a car-lite Singapore.


3 properties sold for $190.5m

Three plum freehold residential buildings in the prime district in Grange Road, Cuscaden Walk and Hullet Road have been sold to three different developers for a total of $190.5 million. They were owned by a group of three investment holding firms, reportedly part of a trust operating in Britain.


Lions set for crunch match

National caretaker coach V. Sundramoorthy says his team have "100 per cent desire" as Singapore's crunch match against Indonesia takes place tonight in the Asean Football Federation Suzuki Cup. While the Lions need to score, Sundram remains convinced that an iron defence will lure the Garudas to pour forward, leaving gaps to be exploited by his own men.


Party time at National Gallery

The Gallery Light To Night Festival, which starts today and runs until Dec 4, is organised by National Gallery Singapore to celebrate its first anniversary. It will feature art installations inspired by or linked to the museum's collections, film screenings, music performances and a food street.


Singapore film wins award

Singaporean film-maker Boo Junfeng's drama Apprentice has won the Netpac award at the Golden Horse Awards in Taipei. The award, given by the Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema, is for a non-Chinese language film. The Golden Horse main event will be held tomorrow. 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 25, 2016, with the headline 'What's News'. Subscribe