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17 Apr 07
A book just released here has questioned the achievements of the Singapore Miracle.
Australian writer Rodney King, in his book, “The Singapore Miracle, Myth and Reality”, has taken a contrarian view of the city-state’s claims of cutting-edge efficiency, global competitiveness, economic freedom and transparency.
King, who has lived in Singapore for a number of years in the 1980’s and 90’s, asserted that Singapore had brilliantly sold itself to the world as an amazing success story to attract foreign investment and talent, Kazinform cites Bernama.
His arguments run counter to the frequently-held view that Singapore is a highly-developed and successful free-market economy.
The island republic has always been described as a remarkably open and corruption-free country with a per capita Gross Domestic Product equal to that of the four largest western European countries.
Last year, the Singapore economy grew by 7.9 percent and growth estimates for this year are between 4.5 and 6.5 percent.
But the author, who once worked briefly for The Straits Times newspaper, said: “It (Singapore) has managed to get most Western think-tanks and ratings agencies to give it top scores for things such as competitiveness, transparency, economic freedom.”
King claimed that to sell itself to the world, Singapore had denigrated and patronised its lesser-developed neighbours.
“As such, it’s really time that Singapore and its much-touted achievements were rigorously scrutinised,” he argued