Republic of Singapore

Singapore is a city-state in Southeast Asia off the southern tip of the Malaysian Peninsula. Singapore has seen a tremendous economic boom since its independence from Great Britain in 1965. Singapore is at the intersection of world trade. Banks and foreign industrial groups have their branches in Singapore. Tourism is one of the most important industries. Singapore is one of the most densely populated countries on earth. The standard of living is very high.

The area of ​​Singapore covers the 587 km² main island as well as 55 islands off the southern tip of the Malay peninsula Malacca (Fig. 1). The main island accounts for over nine tenths of the total land area. With a total area of ​​around 650 km², Singapore is not even as big as Rügen. However, its population of around 3.2 million is almost the same as that of Berlin.

Short for SG on ABBREVIATIONFINDER.ORG, Singapore is a republic in the British Commonwealth. At the beginning of the nineties, Singapore, along with Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan, was one of the emerging economies in Asia, the so-called little tiger states. Singapore has long since left the other “little tigers” behind and is now the wealthiest country in Asia after Japan.


Surface shape

The relief of the islands is flat and undulating. They are part of a former land bridge that once connected Asia and Australia. The highest point in Singapore, the Bukit Timah, is 177 m on the main island. The main island is connected to the mainland by a bridge embankment with roads, railways and long-distance water networks. Due to the high population density, the reclamation of new land plays a major role. The land area of ​​Singapore is continuously growing due to landfills on the coasts. However, there is still a great lack of space, especially in the urban area of ​​Singapore. Here new building land is gained by leveling hills and draining swamps and parts of the sea. The new port, the airfield and new industrial and residential areas have been created on such areas.

Climate and vegetation

Singapore has a tropical climate. The mean January temperature is 26 °C, the mean July temperature about 28 °C. The annual temperature fluctuations are therefore very small.

Singapore has an average annual rainfall of around 2,400 mm.

Most of the precipitation falls between November and January in the monsoonal rainy season (Fig. 3).

In total, it rains about 150 days a year, with precipitation generally falling as heavy rain in the second half of the day.

The climate in Singapore is not very pleasant for Europeans, as it is very humid and the humidity is 85%.

Tropical rainforests once dominated the landscape of Singapore. However, the forests fell victim to clearing as early as the first half of the 19th century. Nowadays the forest is partly reforested for recreational purposes, e.g. B. in the parks at Bukit Timah. The north coast of Singapore is covered with a wide mangrove belt.

Important data about the country

Surface: 618 km²
Residents: 4.3 million
Population density: 6 958 residents / km²
Growth of population: 1.7% / year
Life expectancy: 79 years
Form of government: since 1959 republic (in the British Commonwealth)
Languages: Chinese (Mandarin), Chinese (other dialects), English, Malay, Tamil
Religions: Buddhists 34%, Muslims 15%, Christians 12.6%, Daoists 8.5%, Hindus 3.6%
Climate: tropical climate with high rainfall, especially in the monsoon season from November to January
Land use: Settlement area 47.6%, arable land 9.5%, forest 4.6%
Economic sectors:
(share of employees)
Agriculture 0.4%, industry 24.6%, services 75%
Export goods: Machinery and transportation equipment, petroleum products, refined rubber, electronic and electrotechnical equipment, ships, textile products
Gross domestic product: US $ 91,342 million (2003)
Gross National Product: US $ 21 230 / residents (2003)


Due to its extraordinarily favorable geographical location at one of the most important intersections of world trade, Singapore has experienced a tremendous economic upswing in recent decades.

Since important shipping and air routes converge here, Singapore developed into an important center of trade, finance and services. Major industrial groups and banks from the USA, Japan and many European countries have their branches in Singapore.

Singapore is also the most important port in Southeast Asia for container handling.

However, not only the geographical location is the reason for the extraordinary economic importance of the city-state.

The government has been pursuing a stable and active economic policy for years, which attracts foreign companies in particular. The investment conditions in Singapore are therefore extremely favorable. Government, corporations and unions are cooperatively involved in its development. The last time that workers were paid higher wages was in the 1980’s.

Foreign investors were thus motivated to invest capital, which contributed to increasing the level of production and the competitiveness of their products.

In Singapore, branches of industry such as the textile industry, the computer industry and the electrical industry as suppliers of electronic components are located, but equally efficient refineries that process crude oil from Brunei and Indonesia into gasoline.

The main trading partners are Japan, the USA, Malaysia, China, Taiwan and Thailand.

In recent years tourism has also become an important branch of the economy.


1150–1819: pre-colonial, Malay period

1819: British merchants set up a trading post for the British East India Company on the site of the medieval Singapore trading post.

1867: Crown Colony of Great Britain

1942–1945: Singapore is occupied by Japanese troops during World War II.

1946: After the defeat of Japan in World War II, Singapore receives the status of a British crown colony with self-government.

1963: Gaining state independence and merging with Malaysia into a state federation

1965: Singapore leaves the federation with Malaysia and becomes an independent republic.

1959–1990: Under the LEE KUAN YEW government, a significant economic upswing takes place, which is weakened by the Asian crisis at the end of the 1990’s.