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What We Can Learn From APEC’s Most Liveable City


The Most Liveable Country in Asia
A Filipino living abroad shares six lessons that
the Philippines can learn from Singapore


After residing in Singapore for 12 years, it comes as no surprise to me that it has replaced Hong Kong as the most liveable city in Asia in the Global Liveability report by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
A technological hub that is the heart of a dynamic region in Southeast Asia, Singapore continues to excel across various sectors, a quality that entices immigrants to uproot to this mu ltiracial city-state. The EIU’s in-house analysts rank cities by allocating each a score for over 30 qualitative and quantitative factors across five main catego ries: stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education, and infrastructure. The scores are then collated and totaled up to give a score out of 100. So how did Singapore become the most liveable city in Asia? Here are six reasons how the small island achieved this.

Education has always been a crucial investment for Singaporeans.
The main factors for Singapore’s rise to the title were impressive and consistent improvements in its world-renowned education system, attaining a perfect score for the first time
from the EIU.
From the onset of their education, children are subjected to a strong culture of academic competitiveness that pushes students to excel in their studies.
This is evident in how most parents invest hundreds of Singaporean dollars for extra tuition classes after school hours so that their children can improve in weak subjects or be well-prepared, especially when nearing national examinations.
Singapore’s comprehensive curriculum framework complements this competitive culture. The EIU ranked the country as the best in effectively equipping their students with the necessary skills for future labor markets. Hence, it is an educational system that not only nurtures bright students and prepares them for exams, but also lays the groundwork for the younger generation to make a difference in the
future workforce. The Philippines needs to realize the importance of this investment and fund its
educational sector to upgrade public schools and revamp its curriculum to meet the needs of the
younger generation.

Singapore is ranked as the second safest city in the whole world after Tokyo, according to EIU’s Safe Cities Index.
Known to be a very disciplined and secured society, Singapore’s safety is one of its finest characteristics due to the lack of crime, military conflict, and civil unrest— undesirable events that
take place in many countries.
The lack of crime can be summed up in one observation: You can walk out on the streets at three
in the morning without fear of getting kidnapped or mugged.
Unlike other cities, Singapore’s ban on drugs, guns, and public alcoholic consumption restrictions
after 10:30p.m. creates a safe city that easily attracts foreign investments.
In the sphere of international relations, Singapore finds itself in a volatile geopolitical situation where terrorism is rife in nearby countries. Hence, it has built a military force to be reckoned with despite its
small population.
All able-bodied men who reach the age of 18 are required to go through two harsh years of National Service in order to train them for any deployment or mission even after they have finished their service. This essentially means that Singapore has a combat-ready citizen army that is ready for armed conflict.
In the Philippines, security is lax compared to Singapore. Stricter laws with firm actions are needed to ensure discipline in our society. It is also the fierce poverty cycle that leads many to a life of crime. There is a lack of job opportunities in the country and more must be done to allow the poorest to change their lives for the better.

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