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Jul 9, 2012

Singapore aims to keep local problem gamblers out of casinos

SINGAPORE, July 9 (Reuters) – Singapore could limit how many
times problem gamblers visit its casinos under proposed
legislation on Monday, bowing to pressure to contain a rise in
gambling addiction in the wealthy city-state just two years
after opening two casino resorts.

Singaporeans and permanent residents who visit casinos more
than five times a month may need to show proof they are not in
financial distress or face restrictions, acting Minister for
Community Development, Youth and Sports Chan Chun Sing told the
Straits Times newspaper.

Jul 9, 2012

Singapore to relax, but not remove, death penalty: Deputy PM

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Singapore’s deputy prime minister on Monday said the country plans to ease its mandatory death penalty in some drug and murder cases but not abolish the ultimate punishment that human rights groups condemn as barbaric.

The wealthy Southeast Asian city-state, which has a zero-tolerance policy for illegal drugs and imposes long jail terms on convicted users, has hanged hundreds of people – including dozens of foreigners – for narcotics offences in the last two decades, Amnesty International and other groups say.

Jun 12, 2012

Singapore leans on oil firms to stop Iran trade

SINGAPORE, June 12 (Reuters) – Singapore is putting pressure
on oil companies operating in the city-state to cut their
dealings with Iran as it seeks to be exempted from U.S.
sanctions on Iran’s oil trade, sources said on Tuesday.

U.S. ally Singapore was absent from a list of countries that
Washington this week declared exempt from sanctions after they
reduced Iranian oil imports. The sanctions aim to cut the flow
of petrodollars that fund Iran’s nuclear programme, which the
West believes Tehran is using to develop weapons. Iran says it
needs reactors to supply electricity.

Jun 9, 2012

Corrected: Genting takes stake in Australia’s Echo, sparks takeover talk

MELBOURNE/SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Singapore gaming operator Genting (GENS.SI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said on Friday it had taken a stake in Echo Entertainment (EGP.AX: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), raising the prospect of a battle for control over the $3 billion Australian casino company with billionaire rival James Packer.

Packer, who wants to use Echo’s license to build a new casino complex in Sydney to attract more Asian high-rollers, has been agitating for change at Echo after building a 10 percent stake in the company, and on Friday succeeded in ousting the company’s chairman.

Jun 8, 2012

Genting takes stake in Australia’s Echo, sparks takeover talk

MELBOURNE/SINGAPORE, June 8 (Reuters) – Singapore gaming
operator Genting said on Friday it had taken a $234
million stake in Echo Entertainment, raising the
prospect of a battle for control over the Australian casino
company with billionaire rival James Packer.

Packer, who wants to use Echo’s licence to build a new
casino complex in Sydney to attract more Asian high-rollers, has
been agitating for change at Echo after building a 10 percent
stake in the company, and on Friday succeeded in ousting the
company’s chairman.

May 11, 2012

OCBC eyes growth as quarterly profit hits record

SINGAPORE, May 11 (Reuters) – Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp
, Singapore’s second-largest lender, said on Friday it
saw “significant growth opportunities” as quarterly net profit
leapt 32 percent to a record high.

OCBC’s results mirrored strong profit announcements by
rivals United Overseas Bank Ltd and DBS Group
and showed Singapore lenders remain healthy even as
Western banks still feel strains from the financial crisis.

Apr 30, 2012

Electronics to be drag on Singapore growth-cbank

SINGAPORE, April 30 (Reuters) – Singapore’s economic
recovery is likely to be muted with continued weakness in
electronics a drag on growth, the central bank said on Monday,
painting a less rosy picture of the economy compared with other
forecasters.

“Despite the rebound in Q1, the pace of recovery for the
rest of the year is expected to be relatively subdued,” the
Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said in its half-yearly
macroeconomic review issued on Monday.

Apr 27, 2012

DBS Q1 profit beats forecast on higher margins, trading

SINGAPORE, April 27 (Reuters) – DBS Group,
Southeast Asia’s largest bank, posted a record quarterly profit
that beat analysts’ expectations due to higher loan margins and
trading income, and was bullish in its outlook.

“Our funding capacity is robust, our asset quality remains
sound and we believe we are well placed to seize opportunities
in the months ahead,” Chief Executive Piyush Gupta said in a
statement.

Apr 25, 2012

Singapore railway station gets new life as fashion runway

SINGAPORE, April 25 (Reuters) – Singapore’s historic Tanjong
Pagar Railway Station was bathed in revolving shades of orange,
pink and purple lights on Wednesday evening.

Less than a year after it ended life as an active train
station, models sashayed down a makeshift runway to show the
latest clothing from Italian fashion house Valentino and show
off one of Singapore’s architectural gems.

Apr 23, 2012

Singapore inflation accelerates as car prices surge

SINGAPORE, April 23 (Reuters) – Singapore’s inflation
accelerated sharply in March, led by a jump in the cost of cars
and housing, suggesting the central bank may tighten monetary
policy further when it comes up for review in October.

The city-state’s consumer price index (CPI) rose 5.2 percent
in March from a year earlier, the government said on Monday, far
exceeding February’s 4.6 percent pace and beating the estimates
of all 11 economists polled by Reuters.