Dilshan Wirasekara on Capital Raising and the Stock Market Outlook for 2024

The Chairman of the Colombo Inventory Exchange (CSE) discusses the options for money boosting and Inventory Market Outlook for 2024.

Give us an overview of the present current market landscape and examine the CSE’s overall outlook for the year 2024.

We feel the overall outlook of the CSE, for the calendar year 2024 to be a favourable 1, which I assume mirrors the outlook for the nation as a full. There is a sizeable recovery in economic action that we see which is now translating into the funds markets and particularly to the Colombo Stock Exchange.

Notably, the turnover ranges of the trade have knowledgeable a sizeable uptick from what it was at the commencing of the year. An maximize from its every day ordinary turnover (ADT) of all-around Rs 715 million in January, to the current comparatively extra steady Rs1.8 billion ADT in March.

I would like to delve into why efficiency wasn’t as what it applied to be, as effectively as why I think it will be much better this time all over. The initial, and arguably most sizeable cause becoming because the region is now in a default standing. As it is in default and awaiting finalisation of exterior lenders for the personal debt restructuring, we are looking at extremely very little international activity, and consequently turnover is still dominated by domestic exercise. As of March 28th, we are at present at 74.91% local 25.09% international participation to turnover. A stark shift from past decades this kind of as in 2018, wherever we have been ready to witness a 50-50 overseas to community contribution to the turnover.

We are optimistic that as the exterior debt restructuring is forecasted to be finalised right before June, we will then be capable to drop our default position. Portfolio cash can then allocate investments into Sri Lanka, and that will generate an improve of overseas activity from its existing status of 25.09%.

Next, the domestic overall economy has experienced a damaging development of 7.8% in 2022, followed by a negative advancement of 2.3% for 2023. However, the very last quarter for 2023 exhibits 4.5% progress for that quarter. Therefore, searching ahead to 2024, we are optimistic that a development of 3 – 5 % will be achieved by the financial state. That will definitely final result in a great deal additional activity.

Future, curiosity charges have been prohibitive for investments. Formerly, fixed income yields were being about 20%, and individuals have a tendency to steer clear of risky asset classes like equity no matter of whether the returns could be fulfilling. The Central Financial institution has decreased coverage prices, and as the AWPLR downward trajectory seems to be coming closer to 10%, which will generally count on to promote credit history progress finally, people today will take into consideration investing in the stock industry thanks to lower fascination rates.

Lastly, the overall performance of the recent market place landscape has not been very extraordinary considering that, the current market still continues to be undervalued. The present-day market PE is 10.27 and the value-to-e-book benefit is at 1.02. However, traditionally we have experienced our current market trade at multiples of 17 instances selling price earnings, a single and a fifty percent instances reserve benefit. These are all the causes that would then additional outcome in the valuations staying re-rated.

In general, we are really optimistic that activity and turnover will increase driving yields and the industry will complete properly for the year 2024 as economic conditions continue to increase.

Do you foresee a desire for Cash Increasing by way of the Inventory Marketplace in 2024?

Indeed, there is a robust anticipation of greater demand from customers for funds boosting by using the stock current market in 2024. A number of factors lead to this optimistic outlook:

  1. Conducive Market place Disorders: The marketplace setting is noticed as favourable for corporations to increase cash. With anticipations of enhanced valuations, providers can accomplish acceptable multiples when boosting equity, creating it an opportune time for capital infusion.
  2. Investor Urge for food: As investor exercise boosts, there is a growing hunger for preliminary community offerings (IPOs). This greater need from traders creates a conducive atmosphere for organizations in search of to elevate capital through the stock current market.
  3. Introduction of New Solutions: The introduction of new money instruments these types of as sustainable bonds, infrastructure bonds, and sukuks supplies substitute fundraising choices for companies. This diversification of offerings is expected to appeal to firms on the lookout to capitalize on these new instruments, thereby driving additional listings and trader activity.
  4. Broad basing by using Introducing Many Listing Boards: The Colombo Inventory Exchange delivers 3 listing boards—the Principal Board, Diri Savi Board, and Empower Board— catering to neighborhood firms of all dimensions. These boards provide as gateways for providers to acquire listings and obtain money marketplaces, delivering a array of options to fit distinctive enterprise profiles and funds-elevating needs. Even further, the Colombo Stock Trade has introduced the Catalist Board exclusively aimed at accommodating listings of Condition-Owned Enterprises anticipated in the long run. In addition, to assist foreign-listed corporations trying to get twin listing status in Sri Lanka, the CSE has set up a specialized board referred to as the Multi Forex Board.
  5. The CSE has strengthened its listing perform by allocating methods with target on issuer relations routines, such as actively partaking with organizations in making consciousness and addressing misconceptions, and streamlining its procedures to aid listings.

Is there opportunity to raise cash in international currency for local providers?

Indeed, there is in truth an opportunity for neighborhood corporations to increase capital in international currency by way of the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE). The framework founded by the CSE lets stated entities to concern overseas currency denominated fairness, subject matter to particular eligibility conditions and regulatory necessities.

One of the vital eligibility requirements is that 50% of the company’s revenues need to be in the form of overseas currency, with a least threshold of USD 5 million in excess of a time period of 3 several years. Also, these issuances are categorised as a distinctive class of shares and are accessible exclusively to non-residents in the country.

In addition, providers that raise foreign forex through these issuances are essential to allocate 40% of the proceeds to area demands, though the remaining 60% can be invested outdoors Sri Lanka.

Irrespective of the probable gains of these listings, which includes obtain to a broader pool of traders and diversification of funding sources, there have been no these kinds of listings so far. This can be attributed to different things, such as the prevailing economic conditions, trade charge volatility, and regulatory constraints.

Nevertheless, there is optimism within just the CSE and the small business group that these listings will acquire traction in the future. Improvements in the local and worldwide economic weather, along with the expanding desire for funds among exporters and other suitable entities, are anticipated to generate curiosity in foreign currency denominated fairness issuances.

As problems go on to evolve and stabilize, it is expected that extra neighborhood corporations will examine the possibility to increase cash in foreign forex through the CSE, contributing to the progress and improvement of Sri Lanka’s cash markets.

The CSE has partnered with USAID to really encourage SMEs to elevate cash via the inventory market. Can you elaborate on the exact same?

The partnership amongst the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) and USAID CATALYZE Private Sector Development Exercise (PSD) signifies a important initiative aimed at empowering Modest and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) to elevate funds by way of the inventory marketplace. This collaboration seeks to increase recognition amongst SMEs about the opportunities obtainable as a result of acquiring a listing on possibly the Diri Savi or Empower Board of the CSE.

To obtain this goal, a series of island-large issuer message boards have been organized, with the most new event held in Jaffna. These community forums provide as platforms for educating opportunity issuers about the gains and procedures associated in listing on the CSE.

At the moment, some expenditure bankers/company finance advisors are partnered with PSD actively playing a important part in aiding SMEs’ the listing approach. Also, as registered Sponsors with the CSE, these investment bankers/company finance advisors are dedicated to supplying ongoing aid to SMEs post-listing, facilitating their changeover, and making certain their ongoing accomplishment. This handholding system extends for a period of two years put up listing, in the course of which these advisors will present steerage and help to listed entities as they navigate the complexities of staying a publicly traded corporation.

Total, this partnership depicts the motivation of both equally the CSE and USAID to foster the development of SMEs and promote inclusive economic progress. By furnishing SMEs with the needed resources, guidance, and incentives, this initiative aims to empower them to harness the funds marketplaces as a usually means of knowing their entire potential and contributing to the broader prosperity of Sri Lanka’s economic system.

The CSE has been aggressively selling economic literacy between different segments. What are your sights on these feats?

I imagine the actuality that fiscal literacy stays at a relatively poor stage in the country is a perennial obstacle of acquiring nations. Fiscal literacy was at 38% few several years in the past and is presently at 54%. Consequently, when the general variety has enhanced, it is nonetheless extremely a lot beneath the benchmark literacy rate that developed nations or medium designed nations are achieving. There is a benchmark that any produced nation is expected to sustain a economic literacy fee of 85%. This proves that there is a direct correlation amongst economic literacy and primarily accomplishing the ‘developed’ position in a place as well.

The CSE as an exchange is really passionate about expanding the fiscal literacy stages of Sri Lanka on a countrywide degree. We conduct various academic systems to be certain that not just buyers, but the common public is fiscally literate from a quite grassroots amount.

The CSE in collaboration with the Securities and Trade Commission of Sri Lanka (SEC), have organised 07 Investor boards in the calendar year 2023, with the purpose of educating the small business local community of just about every of individuals districts, giving precious insights to each possible and present traders in the region. We have projected the exact same for this calendar year as properly, two message boards of which we have by now concluded in Vavuniya and Dambulla. The other 5 boards are established to take location in just the coming months. In addition to these, we have a sturdy branch network doing work diligently to advertise economical literacy throughout all components of the place, together with rural areas and we have productively finished 310 branch schooling applications as well as 80 on line community forums around the earlier year.

We have had conversations with the instruction ministry and have efficiently arrive to an agreement to consist of fiscal literacy associated issue make a difference into the 2025 curriculum. This will warranty a significant effect on learners graduating from secondary education, as even though they may well not go to college, they will nevertheless possess a primary knowledge of capital marketplaces and its solutions. The latest O/L syllabus does include a extremely essential introduction to funds marketplaces under the ‘Commerce’ elective subject as nicely as for the A/Ls under the commerce stream. We proposed that the syllabus revision for 2025 would include things like the same for pupils from grades 6 – 9 to make sure they are fiscally literate ahead of they reach the standard stages.

Since the establishment of the 100 Capital Market Golf equipment past yr, a collaborative energy involving the Presidential Secretariat, the Ministry of Instruction, the (SEC), and the CSE, we have also set about organising an inter-school quiz competitors, the first of its variety in Sri Lanka.

In addition to this, we have also started hosting an inter-college quiz competitiveness termed the ‘Varsity Battles’ this is the 2nd consecutive year we host it with the intention of educating state college students on capital marketplaces.

Focus on the efforts CSE has taken to broaden the regional investor foundation while maximizing investor self esteem and defense.

Apart of the lots of academic systems, trader message boards and issuer boards organised, as I outlined before, we also host quiz competitions as a much more dynamic way to deliver in extra potential traders. The CSE is in the method of initiating the sixth version of Sri Lanka’s only cash marketplace quiz, “CSE Masterminds 2024”. An function that in 2023, attracted the participation of around 77 groups with a wide representation of corporates and personal organizations, point out establishments and other capital market stakeholders from all-around the state.

In conditions of improving investor self-confidence and security, permit me start off by mentioning that the general variety of CDS accounts have improved. We had been at 930,022 CDS accounts as of December 31st 2023, and we at this time have 933,592 CDS accounts. We have a CSE mobile application to help probable traders to conveniently open CDS accounts, have straightforward access to incremental industry facts, attain entry to buying and selling through stockbrokers and make electronic settlements making use of the banking community. The investing public can count on a new upgraded edition of the cell application with new features to adhere to. What we are seeking for is that these accounts will be actively buying and selling. As I described before, we are conducting a variety of teaching courses, a range of investor message boards, university and faculty amount plans and overseas road reveals, to persuade buyers to trade the marketplace.

Investor defense is one thing that the CSE requires extremely significantly. We have created many amendments to the listing policies as per necessities of the new SEC Act and as a result, all safeguards in position for trader security have received strengthened as properly. Insider investing as very well as other marketplace offences and unethical tactics now have far far more ramifications for those people who breach the procedures. We are taking a reasonably rigorous method for compliance with these.

We have also strengthened the listing procedures such as, ensuring well timed disclosures as properly as publishing of accounts, among other individuals, which is another measure to uphold investor safety. We are fully commited to enforcing these guidelines and we hope that then the public will have self-assurance that all detailed organizations will conform to these principles.

Even though the CSE has Marketplace Surveillance, Broker Supervision and Stated Entity Compliance departments, there is a separate regulator as nicely that will more safeguard all investor rights. The new Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC) composition, an impartial committee, is established wholly unbiased of the secretariat to be certain impartiality throughout the full grievance procedure. Consequently, when anyone has a complaint, there is a approach now that finishes up with an impartial dispute resolution committee producing it wholly separate from the CSE and SEC. Hence, any complaints are run by way of a approach that culminates solely impartial from the CSE and SEC.

In earlier decades the CSE witnessed international participation of about 45%. Presently it is at 25%. What options do CSE have to catch the attention of foreign participation?

Thanks to the political and financial turmoil over the earlier four yrs, there has been a noteworthy drop in international exercise. Sri Lanka’s recent position as a nation in default has also led to minimum portfolio allocations. The government has expressed plans to total the credit card debt restructuring by June, which would ideally end result in the removal of the default position.

We are self-assured that on achievement of that, portfolio allocations will restart which will result in the overseas activity heading back again from the recent outflow of 7,918.2 to the elevated ranges that we have witnessed traditionally.

We have ongoing to engage with overseas investors by way of numerous roadshows and I was in a position to characterize the Colombo Inventory Trade as the nationwide stock exchange of Sri Lanka as aspect of the government delegation to foreign countries to strike up discussions with potential stakeholders. The CSE executed discussion boards overseas in India, British isles, and Dubai, and was section of the delegation to New York and Davos along with his excellency, President Ranil Wickremesinghe.

We have managed to maintain engagement with international buyers through these challenging moments for the state. What the investing public need to have to fully grasp is that these inflows and outflows are all part of the investment cycle. There have been several years where we have knowledgeable key outflows and expert comprehensive turnarounds that offset individuals damaging numbers.

The CSE is also contemplating the possibility of conducting regional investor boards to consider and create fascination back again in our sector once once more.

Past the function that the CSE does in conditions of attracting foreign participation, current market intermediaries have their have dialogues and applications as properly which more contribute to educating their foreign clientele, and we sincerely inspire that.

The put up Dilshan Wirasekara on Funds Raising and the Inventory Market Outlook for 2024 appeared to start with on Adaderana Biz English | Sri Lanka Organization News.


Student knocked down by car after driver fails to stop at zebra crossing outside Bukit View Secondary

Vehicle rams into scholar at zebra crossing outside the house Bukit See Secondary on 16 April

On Tuesday (16 April), SG Highway Vigilante &#8211 SGRV posted footage of a collision involving a student and a car outside the house Bukit See Secondary College.

The movie confirmed the girl, dressed in what appeared to be a college uniform, making an attempt to cross at a zebra crossing with steerage from a targeted visitors warden.

Having said that, an oncoming motor vehicle failed to notice her, knocking her in excess of.

Numerous commenters have named out the driver for not becoming knowledgeable of their environment.

University student strike by car or truck at zebra crossing in university zone

In accordance to SGRV, the incident transpired along a zebra crossing around Bukit See Secondary College at 7.05am currently (16 April).

Dashcam footage from a automobile travelling in the reverse route showed the college student strolling swiftly across the zebra crossing.

Resource: SG Highway Vigilante &#8211 SGRV on Fb

Even with signals from the targeted visitors warden to alert oncoming motor vehicles of pedestrians, the driver of a white Honda Vezel seemingly failed to observe the student crossing the street.

The car or truck rammed into the pupil, sending her flying and then slipping to the ground.

Supply: SG Highway Vigilante &#8211 SGRV on Fb

The website traffic warden was viewed strolling to the accident scene shortly in advance of the clip ended.

In response to queries from MS News, the Singapore Civil Defence Power (SCDF) verified it was alerted to the incident at about 7.10am.

Paramedics conveyed the pupil to Nationwide College Hospital (NUH).

MS News has also attained out to Bukit Watch Secondary College for remarks.

Driver called out for recklessness

Right after observing the clip, lots of Fb commenters called out the driver for failing to look at the zebra crossing just before advancing.

Resource: Facebook

Many others blamed the traffic warden for not correctly stopping the collision, and the university student for &#8220managing&#8221 across the zebra crossing.

Source: Fb

Over-all, most commenters wished the university student a fast recovery.

Supply: Facebook

Also browse: 2 pupils hurt soon after accident with lorry in Buona Vista, driver aiding with investigations

2 pupils hurt soon after incident with lorry in Buona Vista, driver assisting with investigations

Have information you ought to share? Get in contact with us by way of electronic mail at [email protected].

Highlighted impression adapted from SG Highway Vigilante &#8211 SGRV on Fb. 

The article College student knocked down by automobile soon after driver fails to prevent at zebra crossing exterior Bukit Look at Secondary appeared very first on Need to Share News – Unbiased News For Singaporeans.


‘I dared to fail’: How these 3 gutsy S’porean artists are blazing their own path overseas

Singaporean entertainment artists making a name for themselves in overseas markets

With Singapore being a small country, it’s inevitable that many creatives here opt to venture overseas to expand their horizons, sharpen their skills and make their mark.

This is especially true for those in the arts and entertainment circles, where opportunities abound in larger cities with established communities within the industry.

MS News spoke to three Singaporean artists who are carving their own paths in the industry on the wider international stage: actors U.S. Praveen and Nathania Ong, as well as songwriter Nat Ho.

They shared their experiences relocating to New York, London, and Seoul respectively, the challenges they faced along the way, and what advice they would give those who wish to do the same.

U.S. Praveen: Off-Broadway stage actor based in New York City

28-year-old U.S. Praveen never planned to be an actor. In fact, he wanted to sign on as a full-time officer with the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) after he started National Service (NS).

That dream came to an abrupt halt when he was rejected in the interview process.

He went on to spend the next four years in a Banking and Finance degree course with the Singapore Institute of Management-University of London (SIM-UOL) programme.

Source: @prabeenus on Instagram

It was there that he cultivated an interest in acting and modelling after a university friend noticed his potential and connected him with an agency.

“I then started to look for agencies on my own and two took me in. Within a couple of months of signing with them, I booked a nationwide commercial for the Republic of Singapore Navy,” said Praveen.

By the time he graduated, he was “dead set” on pursuing acting as his career.

He began starring in commercials as well as television and film projects in Singapore. Praveen was notably a series regular in the Vasantham drama ‘Vettai 5: The Hunt Begins’.

Image courtesy of U.S. Praveen

With the money he had saved up from these projects and modelling gigs, he left to study at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute (LSTFI) in New York City (NYC), and never looked back.

He is now based in NYC, and has been there for about two years.

Explaining his choice of location, he said: “It was New York or Nowhere. Simple as that.”

After deciding that he wants to pursue acting full-time, Praveen initially enrolled in an Acting Studio in Singapore, which was led by Kamil Haque, who once studied and taught as a faculty in the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in Los Angeles.

“When I was studying with him in Singapore, it wouldn’t be a surprise to find me in the library devouring books about Lee Strasberg and The Group Theater and Stanislavski. I just had too many questions that needed answers.”

Following countless hours of research, Praveen figured it was better to get as close to the source as possible, and most of the people he had looked up to and hoped to learn from were in New York. Thus, he set his sights there, too.

When asked why he did not go to Los Angeles instead, he explained that it was because NYC is a city bearing similarities to Singapore.

He added that, as most of his favourite rappers are from NYC, he simply desired to see the place that influenced them and walk the ground they tread.

Faced challenges fining accomodations & different auditioning culture as an artist overseas

It was not all rainbows and unicorns for Praveen when he got to NYC, though.

The biggest problem he faced was finding suitable accommodation.

For instance, he had to cancel the first arrangement he made, because he started getting “weird vibes”.

“Thank god I did, because when I went to his place, it was in a rough neighbourhood. Lucky for me, someone in school had a spare room to sublet and I stayed with him.”

That, however, was not the end of his troubles.

As Praveen did not have a US Social Security Number (SSN) and a US Credit Score, he was unable to secure long-term accommodation, and could only find sublets to live in.

While the upside to that is they usually come fully furnished, the downside is should the owner of the house return, the subletter would have to leave. As a result, he had to move from sublet to sublet every three months or so.

“That’s something I would never ever wish on anybody. The amount of stress it causes is unfathomable,” he shared.

“There was once when a room opened up and I had only 12 hours to move in. I rushed back home, squeezed all my belongings into my two suitcases, booked a Lyft and off I went.”

He had also struggled with the city’s auditioning culture when he first started out.

In Singapore, an actor typically would not need to bring their headshots and portfolio to the audition venue as their agents would have sent them over beforehand.

In NYC, however, bringing along copies of one’s headshots and portfolio is common practice, and this was something that Praveen overlooked during one of his first auditions.

Image courtesy of U.S. Praveen

“I was petrified, I didn’t have my headshots or my resume printed out,” he shared. “I thought that’s going to reflect badly on me and they were going to think I’m not a professional and as a result, reject me.”

His fears turned out to be unfounded — he managed to book the job.

Since then, the Singapore actor has been in several Off-Broadway (a class of theatres with a seating capacity of 100 to 499 seats) as well as Off-Off-Broadway (venues with under 100 seats) plays and musicals since he touched down in The Big Apple.

On top of that, he is working on a new Hulu TV limited series starring Jenny Slate (Obvious Child) and Michelle Williams (Shutter Island, The Greatest Showman) called ‘Dying for Sex’.

“Working on this show not only gave me the eligibility to join SAG-AFTRA, a union for TV and film acting, but it also gave me major insights as to how a major Hollywood production functions like a well oiled machine,” he said.

artists overseas

Image courtesy of U.S. Praveen

Pursue your dreams, go full speed ahead, says actor in NYC

When asked if he has any advice for those who wish to take the same path he did and expand their creative chops overseas, Praveen provided the following quote from British-American poet W.H. Auden:

God may reduce you on Judgment Day to tears of shame, reciting by heart the poems you would have written, had your life been good.

“I remember reading that for the first time and I just started bawling my eyes out,” he elaborated.

“Imagine going through life, tentatively — suppressing every impulse that you’ve been blessed with, because you are worried about what someone might say, or worried about how it will all work out — and as a result of that overthinking, taking the safer road.”

He encourages anyone who wishes to pursue their dreams in NYC to go full-speed ahead: “Yes, do it! It’s always a yes from me. However, if I were to tell them anything, it would be to build a support system.”

He added: “It is going to get tough, and as artists we have to take heart every single day and keep marching on. I am blessed to have great support from my family and friends and my army mates.”

Nathania Ong: First S’porean to play Éponine in ‘Les Misérables’ on London’s West End

Looking at Nathania Ong now, you wouldn’t have thought the 28-year-old once suffered a string of rejections from drama schools in the United Kingdom (UK).

Nathania is now a household name, known for her spectacular performance playing the role of Éponine in the 2022 United Kingdom (UK) and Ireland tours of ‘Les Misérables’, and subsequently its West End run.

She is the first Singaporean to play this part on the West End.

At 18, however, Nathania faced her first setback.

She wanted to pursue acting professionally after catching the acting bug while being part of the theatre club in Anglo-Chinese Junior College (ACJC), she told MS News.

She thought obtaining an education in one of the UK’s top drama institutions would be a great way to start.

That didn’t go so well. “I found myself being rejected from every school I applied to within two weeks of landing on UK soil. Being young at the time, the auditions were a big, financially costly mistake. It really shook my confidence as a performer.”

After failing to get in, she went on to attend the Bachelor’s in Acting course at Lasalle College of the Arts for a year.

Although she hadn’t planned on leaving, an “emotional phone call” with her best friend convinced her to try auditioning for spots in the UK again.

In 2018, seeing as the Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts was auditioning in Singapore at the time, she decided to apply.

“Following a string of seemingly insurmountable inconveniences — including getting cut from the final act of my final year show to jump on a flight to the UK and land two hours before my audition — I made it to the final round auditions,” she recalled.

“I got into the course, and I haven’t looked back ever since.”

Singaporeans artists rarely cast in principal roles while overseas

At Mountview Academy, Nathania would put on one of her proudest performances as Helen Burns and Bertha Mason in a closed production of Charlotte Brontë’s ‘Jane Eyre’.

“Helen was the embodiment of selfless kindness, whereas Bertha was a desperate, unhinged predator. Finding and exploring the contrast between those two characters was lots of fun,” she continued.

This being one of her first few onstage experiences, Nathania knew she was probably not at her best — acting wise. However, she was glad she gathered her courage, stepped up and did it anyway.

What I was proud of during that production was my boldness and daringness to fail.

She was glad she didn’t fear making the wrong choices, and was able to laugh off mistakes one makes during rehearsals or the experimental stage of a production.

“Not fearing failure allows you to experiment more with bold acting choices, to even sometimes surprise yourself with the range of action a character could employ in a scene,” she explained.

“I was once told by one of my teachers that when we act we are given a perimeter or a frame to play in. Safe choices are somewhere near the epicentre of the frame, while an ineffective choice sits outside the perimeters,” she added.

“The job of a great actor is to try and get as dangerously close to the borders without overstepping them.

Upon graduation, Nathania said she was “fortunate to have landed my roles in relatively quick succession”.

On her historic role in ‘Les Misérables’, Nathania said she was “ecstatic” and it was a dream come true.

“Moving countries to pursue what seemed like a pipe dream was a big step for me, and booking the role made me feel like it was all worth it, all the uncertainty, and all the sacrifices.”

In spite of the achievement, she confessed that she struggled with her confidence at some points during the production, which she chalked up to being a relatively young actor when she booked the role.

“Even as a regular person in the rehearsal room, I would often find myself shrinking in body language and in discussions, not daring to speak and hugging to the corners of the room,” she recalled.

“It took a little bit of getting used to, but once I realised that the kind people surrounding me and I were working towards the same goal, I permitted myself to open up and grow in confidence.”

With her dormmates at Mountview Academy. Source: @nattyong on Instagram

Despite her training and portfolio, Nathania does face some difficulties finding work as a Singaporean in the London scene.

Nathania told MS News that opportunities like hers are few and far between.

“As Singapore is a small country, it is rare to see castings that call for actors of Singaporean descent specifically. Often the castings call for Asian actors of a larger diaspora,” she explained.

“This affects our chances of being cast, instead giving way for more similar and genuine casting — and rightly so! However, this does make it a little bit more difficult to find work as a Singaporean actor.”

Although the industry in London is moving towards a more inclusive and diverse environment, she noted that there’s still much room for improvement.

“East and Southeast Asians are being cast in more shows now, but I do feel that we are rarely cast in principal roles, instead being cast as covers or swings.”

Covers or swings, according to Nathania, refer to actors in a show that learn ensemble or leading roles, and cover the tracks in the event that the main actor is unable to perform, like a substitute of sorts.

artists overseas

Source: @my_photography_journal_ on Instagram

In spite of that, with the increasing number of shows telling Asian stories, Nathania hopes to see more of those and play in one someday.

“What keeps me going is that I never joined this industry hoping to get rich or famous. I started performing out of love and passion, and I try to constantly remind myself of that,” she explained.

“Whenever I get an exciting audition, I focus on the joy of exploring new work, rather than the pain that might come with the rejection,” she said.

Believe that you are enough, says West End actress

Nathania’s strongest ally and supporter through it all? Her father, whom she calls “her biggest fan” and regularly reminds the actress how proud he is of her.

After her successful West End run, Nathania decided to return to Singapore in late 2023, as she was offered the part of Cinderella in ‘Into The Woods’, a musical theatre adaptation of well-loved fairy tales by Pangdemonium, a Singapore-based theatre company run by husband-and-wife duo Adrian and Tracie Pang.

She spends her time reconnecting with family and friends — all while making her mark in the local scene.

She also staged a solo charity concert at the Esplanade in aid of the Business Times Budding Artists Fund in December last year.

Source: @nattyong on Instagram

Asked if she had any advice for budding artists, Nathania said she wished someone had told her this when she first started her career: “You are enough. You are enough right now, and you were enough before you made something of yourself, you are always enough and much more than that.”

Nat Ho: Songwriter who hopped from Singapore to Taiwan, Los Angeles & Seoul

For 39-year-old songwriter, actor, artist, and entrepreneur Nathaniel Ho, also known as Nat Ho, the route to where he is today is a long and arduous journey.

These days, he is a full-time songwriter in Seoul, and has been there since August 2022.

artists overseas

Image courtesy of Nat Ho.

“Korea had never been part of my plans, primarily because of the language barrier, but I guess the Universe works in mysterious ways,” said Nat, who was a contestant in the first season of Singapore Idol in 2004.

In 2013, he decided to pack his bags and move to Taiwan after signing a nine-year management contract with a Taiwanese management company.

“The first year was very intense artist training,” he recalled. “In the second year, I released my first Mandarin mini-album ‘第二男主角 / The Second Leading Man’. The song broke into the Top 10 on Taiwanese radio stations.”

However, things went awry when the company’s hired CEO allegedly mismanaged the business’ funds, and the investors decided to pull out.

He returned to Singapore in 2015 when he got a role in the local longform English television series ‘Tanglin’. He also ran a food and beverage business until 2019.

“By then, I was completely burnt out and needed to refocus on myself, to rest and regroup. So I moved to Los Angeles (LA) in the middle of 2019 to study music production at Icon Collective,” said Nat.

He spent about two years in the US before returning to Singapore for Chinese New Year in 2021.

It was meant to be a brief visit; unfortunately, he could not return to LA due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Language barriers are a struggle for Singaporean artists living overseas

When travel restrictions eased, Nat travelled to South Korea in April 2022. He liked it so much there that he stayed for 1.5 months.

He then decided to move there in August after enrolling at Yonsei University to learn the Korean language.

In 2020, Nat pitched a song he wrote for an upcoming album for South Korean boy band Super Junior through a connection at a Korean publishing company. Even though the song did not make the cut, it was at that point that he decided to launch his professional songwriting career and pitch for more projects.

Moving abroad isn’t easy, he said, with most challenges coming in the form of finances or logistics. In his experience, it takes about half a year before one can resume a semblance of financial independence when they relocate to another country.

Nat acknowledges that he has been lucky enough to have a relatively stable income during the process of relocating from a variety of sources, such as online businesses and investments.

For those who do not, however, he suggests taking on more flexible projects such as part-time work or freelance work from online platforms such as Fiverr and Upwork.

There is also the need to familiarise oneself with the local language and culture to make friends and build a new support network, he added.

Recalling his first day of school in Korea, where he attended a beginner’s class, he said: “Besides myself and another boy from India, the rest of the class had actually already studied Korean for a minimum of six months to a year! The class was taught in full-Korean — not a single word of English.”

I honestly felt really stupid and helpless for those two weeks and I started doubting whether I had made the right decision. But eventually, I chose to stick with it and trust the process. Although I still speak Korean like a three-year-old, I’m definitely much better than when I first started.

Nat is finally able to see the fruits of his persistence.

“A year later, I finally have my work visa, and I’m able to properly make songwriting my full-time career. I’m immensely grateful to be here in Seoul, and looking forward to more exciting things coming this year.”

Embrace the adventure, says musician in Seoul

Asked why the multi-hyphenate decided to move overseas that many times, and he pointed to the small artistic market in Singapore.

“Even though there are initiatives to help with the arts in Singapore, it is not enough,” he said.

“Remember the survey that ranked ‘artist’ as the number one non-essential job? That alone is reason enough to know that the arts will never be a priority in Singapore — and it’s totally understandable because as a tiny country with limited natural resources, we have to prioritise our survival and income-earning abilities. I don’t fault people for saying that.”

That said, Nat describes himself as a “very proactive” person who adapts by either changing himself or his environment, should he find himself in a situation where he is unhappy.

Responding to questions about what an aspiring musician like himself should do if they wish to embark on the same journey, Nat said: “Prepare enough money! Save as much as you can. These things are expensive. And especially in the area of music, it could take a while before being able to see any meaningful income.”

Lastly, he encourages everyone to follow their own “personal blueprint” and embrace the adventure. While naysayers or even well-meaning friends might have their own opinions on what should be done, Nat says it’s best to lead your own journey instead of paying heed to others.

He elaborated: “Anytime I have made any decision, people always have had comments and opinions about it — and it’s not always from a place of mean-spiritedness. Sometimes it can come from friends and family, too.”

“However, people tend to give opinions based on their own personal lived experiences, and it’s not going to always match my own experience, knowledge, and personal traits, so I only take in what I feel is useful and tactfully put aside the rest if I find it doesn’t apply.”

Have news you must share? Get in touch with us via email at [email protected]

Featured images courtesy of U.S. Praveen, adapted from @nattyong on Instagram, and courtesy of Nat Ho. 

The post ‘I dared to fail’: How these 3 gutsy S’porean artists are blazing their own path overseas appeared first on Must Share News – Independent News For Singaporeans.


Father of S’porean best international cadet fell ill, died while cadet was on course in UK

Singaporean Finest Global Cadet&#8217s father fell ill, died even though cadet was at Uk&#8217s Sandhurst

He was in the midst of a gruelling 44-7 days class at a prestigious British army academy when he been given terrible news: His father was in important situation again in Singapore.

Revealing this personalized tale on The Singapore Military&#8217s Fb website page, Lieutenant (LTA) Nicholas Tang Qing Feng reported it was in December past 12 months that he received the alarming cell phone connect with from property.

&#8220My father was in essential affliction and the medical doctor had encouraged that all household customers to check out him as before long as doable,&#8221 he stated.

Right after generating urgent preparations, he was able to return dwelling, he extra. &#8220I noticed my father for the past time in advance of his passing&#8221.

Then-Officer Cadet Tang with his sister, mom and late father at OCS. Source: The Singapore Army on Facebook

Even though speaking to his father, he had shared with him his achievements at The Royal Military services Academy Sandhurst, incorporating that he was properly taken care of by instructors and fellow cadets.

&#8220I built a guarantee to him that I would gain the Global Sword for him and make him proud, and I am immensely thankful and proud that I was in a position to continue to keep my promise to him.&#8221

The Singaporean was awarded the sword for his excellent performance all through the Frequent Commissioning Training course consumption 232 at the academy.

Resource: The Singapore Army on Fb

He acquired it at the Sovereign’s Parade on 12 April from France&#8217s Chef d&#8217état-big de l&#8217armée de terre, the French Military&#8217s Chief of Military Workers, Basic Pierre Schill, who was representing King Charles.

Recognized in 1947, the Royal Army Academy Sandhurst is the officer training centre of the British Military, wherever officers are properly trained to consider on the accountability of foremost their soldiers.

There has been 5,400 global college students properly trained at the Academy considering the fact that 1947, from 129 countries.

Supply: The Singapore Army on Fb

The Military in its publish congratulated LTA Tang for his &#8220outstanding achievement and traveling our Singapore flag high&#8221, adding that he had fulfilled an psychological guarantee to his late father.

Pointing out that he is grateful for the opportunity to represent Singapore on an intercontinental platform, he claimed: &#8220All this couldn’t have transpired without the enable of my superiors who fought difficult for me to attend the system, the psychological help supplied to me by my beloved kinds.&#8221

He also credited the long-long lasting friendships cast during the class, which experienced produced it 1 of his very best armed forces activities nonetheless.

Reflecting on his time there, LTA Tang reported the study course was not with no its bodily demanding difficulties &#8220that tested his bodily restrictions and psychological resilience&#8221.

There was a single exercising, for instance, that required officers to dig 24 trenches in 4 times. They had to dig for hours whilst emotion chilly and wet, he said.

&#8220Whilst many of us identified it tricky to persevere at situations, the camaraderie and encouragement from fellow cadets and instructors, kept us heading,&#8221 he stated. &#8220It was hard, but genuinely really fulfilling.&#8221

Supply: The Singapore Military on Fb

LTA Tang stated his time in Sandhurst has made him &#8220much more self-assured and resilient as an individual&#8221 and as a chief &#8220who values teamwork and servant management&#8221.

&#8220Some a must have lessons that I’ve learnt from the study course is striving hard to keep on being concentrated and continue on thriving in difficult times fairly than only surviving, and getting to be a chief who cares for his individuals.&#8221

Also study: S’porean named most effective global cadet at British army academy, suggests he’s very pleased to signify place


S’porean named finest intercontinental cadet at British armed service academy, says he&#8217s very pleased to depict nation

Have information you should share? Get in touch with us by using e mail at [email protected].

Showcased impression adapted from The Singapore Military on Facebook and Facebook.

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Suspect in KLIA shooting incident arrested after more than 24 hours on the run

Police arrest suspect driving 14 April KLIA taking pictures incident

A lot more than a day just after he fled the scene of a taking pictures incident at Kuala Lumpur Global Airport (KLIA), the suspect has been arrested.

Law enforcement searching man who fired gunshots at KLIA &#038 fled, bodyguard seriously hurt

Police managed to nab him in Kota Bharu, Kelantan these days (15 April).

The authorities will release additional specifics regarding the circumstance later on.

Suspected KLIA shooter arrested in Kelantan

Citing Inspector-Common of Law enforcement Tan Sri Razarudin Husain, New Straits Moments (NST) reported that the arrest transpired on Monday (15 April).

Officers apprehended the suspect &#8212 Hafizul Harawai, 38 &#8212 in Kota Bharu, Kelantan at about 3pm.

Aspects bordering the arrest are scarce at the time of crafting. However, the authorities will give extra info at a afterwards time.

The hottest advancement comes just after the capturing incident that transpired at about 1.30am on Sunday (14 April).

Targetted spouse but skipped, spouse&#8217s bodyguard in hospital

Reports mentioned that Hafizul at first fired two pictures at shut variety at his wife, who was awaiting the arrival of a pilgrimage group at KLIA Terminal 1.

In its place of hitting his goal, one particular shot struck her bodyguard, who was instantly rushed to the clinic.

As of this report, the bodyguard is in secure condition.

Hafizul&#8217s wife had employed the bodyguard soon after filing reviews from her partner, who allegedly built threats versus her. The couple was reported to be in the course of action of divorce ahead of the incident happened.

Also read: KLIA taking pictures: Wife hired bodyguard soon after lodging stories towards suspect, couple in course of action of divorce

KLIA capturing: Spouse employed bodyguard soon after lodging studies versus suspect, pair in approach of divorce

Have information you ought to share? Get in touch with us through e mail at [email protected].

Featured graphic adapted from BERNAMA by using Malay Mail and Farah Cie on Facebook.

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E-bike riders allegedly travel at speeds of up to 140km/h at Marina Bay & Changi

E-bicycle riders filmed racing at higher speeds alongside Marina Bay & Changi Coast Highway

E-bicycle riders are typically accused of not practising warning on the road.

The latest footage of e-bicycle riders racing alongside Marina Bay and Changi Coastline Road definitely is not assisting their circumstance.

In accordance to the Facebook webpage that shared the clip, the illegally modified electric devices ended up travelling at speeds of up to 140km/h.

E-bicycle riders filmed racing at large speeds

On Monday (15 April), the SGRV Fan Facebook page posted a video clip compilation of various racing incidents involving e-bike riders.

The very first recording shows a few e-bicycle users zooming down an empty street, followed by another movie of a rider travelling at a equally higher speed.

Source: SGRV Lover on Fb

People today ended up also viewed observing alongside the sidelines and laughing at the rider.

In the subsequent clip, an additional e-bike rider is witnessed flying down a narrower route, all over again with bystanders filming and observing the &#8220race&#8221.

e-bike riders

Resource: SGRV Enthusiast on Facebook

A velocity take a look at screenshot states that the rider allegedly arrived at a most pace of 140km/h.

e-bike riders

Supply: SGRV Enthusiast on Facebook

The third clip exhibits a further two e-bicycle riders bolting down an empty highway.

e-bike riders

Resource: SGRV Enthusiast on Fb

The final clip depicts two riders swiftly hurtling previous the digicam, showcasing the acceptance of races inside the e-bicycle group.

e-bike riders

Resource: SGRV Fan on Facebook

Netizens get in touch with out riders for recklessness

Many Fb users termed out the e-bicycle riders for their reckless behaviour.

Source: Fb

Some cracked jokes, sarcastically remarking that the riders must clearly show off their &#8220expertise&#8221 professionally.

Source: Fb

In general, most pointed out the dangers these functions could pose for pedestrians and other highway buyers.

Supply: Fb

In accordance to the Land Transport Authority (LTA), motorised mobility units are only permitted to attain a highest speed of 25km/hr. 

Also examine: S’porean Children Balance Precariously On E-Bike At Significant Speeds, Called Out For Lack Of Protective Equipment

S&#8217porean Children Balance Precariously On E-Bike At High Speeds, Called Out For Deficiency Of Protective Equipment

Have information you need to share? Get in touch with us through e mail at [email protected].

Highlighted picture adapted from SGRV Supporter on Fb.

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Like father, like sons: get to know this tight-knit family of ICA officers

How a person father motivated his sons to abide by in his footsteps

Singapore may possibly be a small state, but it is also household to some of the busiest journey checkpoints in the earth.

To take care of such a high volume of travellers although also maintaining our borders protected involves a crew of focused staff. That is the place the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) comes in.

MS Information not too long ago fulfilled a household of three ICA officers to find out additional about their life inside of and outdoors of work, and as it turns out, there’s a large amount additional to getting at ICA than you may think.

The father who joined ICA more than 40 yrs ago

When Abdul Hamed, 63, joined ICA as a shiny-eyed and bushy-tailed twentysomething in 1981, it technically did not exist back then.

It was only in 2003 that the Singapore Immigration & Registration and the Customs & Excise Department’s checkpoint features merged to type the ICA that we all know today.

“Back then, I just required to give it a test,” he mused. “A government occupation is prestigious, and I felt I could lead.”

Quick ahead pretty much 45 yrs, and Mr Hamed is nevertheless fortunately utilized at ICA as a Deputy Crew Leader at Changi Airport Terminal 3, in which he manages the daily functions and seems to be out for the well-being of his colleagues.

Obtaining been around for so extensive, Mr Hamed has witnessed all forms of variations and speedy enhancements in technological innovation, which he admitted that he struggled to embrace at initial.

When he received utilized to it, though, he was stunned at how technology made sure duties so much much more productive.

“From manually verifying travellers’ passports to possessing automated gates and seamless clearance, vacation and immigration procedures have noticeably enhanced. I’m so proud to be a part of it!” he exclaimed.

When questioned about his most unforgettable situation, he recalled serving to a expecting lady who gave start to twins on a cruise ship in international waters. At that time, he was a person of the several officers picked to direct Final Port Clearance, exactly where he experienced to go on board to tackle clearance matters.

Mr Hamed and his colleagues instantly stepped in to settle all the required paperwork. They organized for the toddlers to have the documentation they required and ensured an ambulance was waiting around for them when they received to port.

Like any one who has been in a specified market for a very long time, Mr Hamed is heartened to see far more men and women from the youthful technology signing up for ICA.

ica family

“They have so considerably to contribute, and as technology advancements, I consider we really should embrace new means of executing items, far too,” he mused.

Of program, some points really don’t alter when it will come to remaining an ICA officer, these kinds of as great ‘old-fashioned’ values like willpower.

“You ought to uphold the regulation in get to serve the public nicely,” Mr Hamed emphasised. “And I am grateful to see my youngsters residing up to that expectation and carrying on my legacy.”

The older son who was the initially to comply with in his father’s footsteps

Like lots of other young adult men in Singapore, Zainal Abidin A. Hamed was not positive what he preferred to do with his everyday living after National Service (NS).

It turned out that inspiration was suitable in entrance of him all together in the sort of his dad, Mr Hamed.

“I observed how information my father was with his lifetime, which produced me question if joining ICA was something that I would like to do as perfectly,” the 36-12 months-old shared.

This 12 months marks Mr Zainal’s 13th yr in ICA. As Staff Leader at Tuas Checkpoint, his role is quite related to that of his outdated man’s, top a crew of officers, running traffic, and being in charge of his colleagues’ very well-being.

When MS Information frequented Mr Zainal at his place of work, it was the to start with day of Ramadan. This period delivers again recollections as he joined ICA throughout the fasting thirty day period, which built adjusting to 12-hour shift work a little bit of a wrestle.

Immediately after a when, however, he began to enjoy the versatility of staying free of charge for the duration of the typical 9-to-5 place of work several hours anytime he was on the night time shift.

ica family

But the memory that Mr Zainal retains closest to his heart is of his late mom, who was so proud of getting a few ICA officers in the spouse and children that laundering their uniforms was a privilege to her.

She would not even enable any of them iron their own uniforms and insisted on undertaking it herself.

“She was the major supporter for Arifin and myself because she thought that [ICA] stood for self-discipline and protection,” he shared.

As the 1st son to stick to in their father’s footsteps, Mr Zainal had the option to influence his more youthful brother, Mr Arifin, in his selection to do the exact as perfectly.

He claimed:

It feels very good to continue my father’s function, and also inspire my brother.

The more youthful son who felt the force to dwell up to his role models’ achievements

Compared with Mr Zainal, Zainul Arifin Abdul Hamed was in the beginning hesitant to do the job at ICA. Nonetheless, the for a longer time his father and brother stayed there, the extra his scepticism waned.

The 34-year-aged joined in 2016 and is now deployed at Woodlands Checkpoint, where he profiles travellers, scans cars for anomalies and assists in managing the dynamic website traffic ailments at the checkpoint.

ica family

He admitted that he felt the tension to live up to his family’s achievements — just after all, he stated that all people in ICA is aware him as “Hamed’s son and Zainal’s brother”.

On the dazzling side, he could go to them for information. Mr Arifin smiled as he recalled some sage terms from his father that obtained him through extensive and challenging days.

“He always tells me to imagine of the positives rather than the negatives,” he explained. “For example, if I crystal clear a whole lot of travellers, he would say that I’m allowing far more readers to enter Singapore and strengthen the country’s economic system.”

Mr Hamed has also often led by illustration.

“Our father never pushed us to be a part of ICA,” Mr Arifin clarified. “I think we ended up affected by what we noticed increasing up, these as the willpower he done at household.”

Even with their distinctive schedules and the simple fact that they perform on opposite corners of Singapore, the loved ones normally tries to come across time to meet.

MS Information received a glimpse at how tight-knit the trio is when we viewed them split fast alongside one another in Mr Zainal’s house.

“If you think about it, there’s not a day we don’t discuss about our get the job done!” Mr Zainal laughed as the a few of them tucked into their chicken rice.

Not that any of them are complaining, while — it is a precious prospect to master from every other even though also increasing nearer as a family members.

Come across your aspiration career at ICA

When you have a few customers of the exact same family doing the job in the identical company for a merged full of 62 many years, it is sufficient to make you wonder what encourages them to stay.

Over and above the satisfying factor of encouraging travellers and safeguarding the country’s borders, owning a very good function-everyday living balance and loads of time for their family members is a large furthermore position.

For occasion, Mr Arifin can get his two young sons to university in the morning right before driving to work.

There are also alternatives to learn, increase, and check out new things. In Mr Zainal’s situation, he could meet persons from close to the entire world and improve his communication capabilities.

Mr Hamed also highlighted that staff welfare, rewards, and remuneration fees have improved significantly, so any one who joins will be in superior hands. Hey, there is got to be a motive he’s been there so long, right?

As a Guardian of Singapore’s Borders, ICA:

  • Detects threats right before they enter Singapore
  • Keeps Singapore related to the globe
  • Develops border safety industry experts as a result of specialised schooling

If you, way too, would like to examine a profession in ICA, check out the site listed here. You can also follow them on Fb, Instagram, and TikTok for updates and insights into lifestyle there.

This submit was brought to you in collaboration with the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority.

Showcased picture by MS News. Images by Hui Wen Chan.

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M’sian Ringgit drops close to lowest value against US Dollar in 26 years

Malaysian Ringgit nears least expensive price in opposition to US Greenback in 26 yrs

The Malaysian Ringgit (MYR) ongoing its downward trend on Monday (15 April), with 1 US Greenback (USD) equating to RM4.77885 in the late afternoon.

In accordance to Bloomberg, this marks a .2% depreciation, bringing the MYR shut to its lowest benefit from the USD in 26 decades.

Throughout the Asian Financial Crisis of 1998, the trade rate was valued at RM4.8850 for every USD.

1 USD equates to RM4.77885 on afternoon of 15 April

According to the USD to MYR chart on, the trade fee stood at RM4.77885 for each USD at 5:15 pm right now.


More than the previous thirty day period, the Malaysian Ringgit (MYR) has persistently weakened against the USD.


In contrast to the Singapore Greenback (SGD), RM1 equated to S$3.51448 at the time of creating.

On 20 Feb this yr, the MYR fell to its cheapest level versus the SGD, with RM1 investing at S$3.57.

USD appreciates amid geopolitical tensions in the Middle East

The latest geopolitical tensions in the Middle East have boosted the attractiveness of the USD as a &#8220secure haven currency&#8221, The Star famous.

Dr Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid, chief economist of Financial institution Muamalat Malaysia Bhd, pointed out:

Given the elevated degree of uncertainties, markets are envisioned to continue to be defensive by positioning themselves in protected haven currencies these kinds of as the US Greenback.

This self esteem in the buck as a responsible store of value is driving its ongoing strengthening amid the conflict.

ringgit us dollar

Source: Burst on Canva

Meanwhile, Bloomberg highlighted that China&#8217s weak economic outlook is a different aspect triggering the MYR&#8217s depreciation, presented that each countries are critical investing partners.

The Worldwide Monetary Fund (IMF) echoed these fears in February, forecasting a modest progress of 4.6% for China&#8217s economy this yr, the South China Morning Publish described.

Also read through: S’pore Greenback equates to RM3.57 as M’sian Ringgit drops even further on 20 Feb

S&#8217pore Greenback equates to RM3.57 as M&#8217sian Ringgit drops more on 20 Feb

Have news you should share? Get in contact with us by means of e-mail at [email protected].

Featured picture adapted from Reuters.

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6 things you might not know about incoming Prime Minister Lawrence Wong

Lawrence Wong factors to know, like his spouse & his e-book listing

Currently (15 April), the Key Minister’s Business office (PMO) announced that present-day PM Lee Hsien Loong will relinquish his publish for the incoming Lawrence Wong on 15 May perhaps.

Through his social media accounts, the Deputy PM showcases his social media activity as very well as his guitar abilities, like this delightful fingerstyle guitar include of Taylor Swift&#8217s Adore Tale.

Watch this submit on Instagram

A write-up shared by Lawrence Wong (@lawrencewongst)

But past that, Mr Wong, who is also the Finance Minister, is a fairly non-public individual, only noting that he is a bookworm, guitar player, and dog lover on his social media profile.

In this article&#8217s a appear at some other details about Mr Wong that you could not have previously acknowledged, which includes his ebook passions and what his wife, Ms Bathroom Tze Lui, does.

1. Present-day wife has a history in banking

Mr Wong has been married twice &#8212 he amicably ended his initially marriage when he was 28 due to incompatibility. The Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC Member of Parliament, who is not recognised to have any children, had lived by yourself for quite a few a long time.

In accordance to this The New Paper write-up, he was seemingly rather adept at cooking and cleaning when he was a bachelor.

He later married Ms Loo Tze Lui, who caught the notice of netizens when she appeared alongside Mr Wong at the inauguration of President Tharman Shanmugaratnam at the Istana very last September.

Currently being the wife of the PM-to-be is plenty of to garner notice, but it was Ms Bathroom&#8217s magnificence that genuinely built her stand out in the group.

Source: @bluebirdconfessions on TikTok

Ms Bathroom is a former banker who formerly sat on the board of administrators of the YMCA until finally 2023.

In 2022, Ms Bathroom appeared in photographs with Mr Wong when they visited Brunei, posted by Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean.

Source: Teo Chee Hean on Facebook


A graduate of Enterprise Administration, Finance from the College of Southern California in 1993, Ms Bathroom has run a solitary-family business office (SFO) given that 2011.

An SFO, in accordance to the Financial Authority of Singapore, is an entity that manages property for or on behalf of only a person household and is wholly owned or controlled by users of the same spouse and children.

2. Maritime Parader who selected to show up at educational facilities nearby

Mr Wong grew up in Maritime Parade, exactly where his Hainan-born father, who died in 2021 at age 86, went to Malaysia as a boy, then arrived to Singapore to perform in a income occupation.

In the meantime, Mr Wong&#8217s Singapore-born mother, was a major university trainer. He&#8217s close to his mother, whom he has explained as a &#8220superwoman&#8221.

Both equally he and his more mature brother have been in the most important faculty she taught at — Haig Boys&#8217 College.

Resource: Lawrence Wong on Fb

In a The Sunday Moments interview with Sumiko Tan, Mr Wong admitted that he chose not to go to an elite school like Raffles Institution as it was &#8220incredibly organic&#8221 to continue on training at Tanjong Katong Secondary School, which was around to residence and wherever all his good friends were being.

Later, Mr Wong attended Victoria Junior School, then earned a Authorities scholarship and selected to go to the United States as it was &#8220dwelling to his favourite musicians&#8221.

The rock, blues, soul, and jazz fanatic counts legendary guitarist Eric Clapton, as perfectly as singers Nina Simone and Ella Fitzgerald among the his favourites.

He obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s levels in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor respectively.

This was adopted by a Grasp in Community Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School.

3. Busked in the US when he was an undergrad

We know that just one of Mr Wong&#8217s statements to fame is his expertise at stringed instruments, notably guitar. He commenced to engage in when he was 8, soon after his father gifted him the instrument.

The 51-12 months-aged obviously enjoys executing. Though in the US studying economics at the College of Wisconsin-Madison, he went busking with his guitar jointly with his American roommate.

If they have been lucky, they&#8217d get paid US$30 (around S$41) actively playing for an hour, but it was only a little something he enjoyed accomplishing, Mr Wong reported in a 2012 job interview.

Be it electrical or acoustic, Mr Wong has played it.

He has even tried his hand at the sitar.

See this article on Instagram

A submit shared by Lawrence Wong (@lawrencewongst)

Mr Wong mentioned in an Instagram put up that tunes and actively playing the guitar enable him to unwind and unwind.

&#8220I never get to perform as a great deal these days. But I nonetheless consider to come across time when I can,&#8221 he explained.

4. Was turned down from the MFA when young

Mr Wong has had a community job that could be explained a stellar &#8212 following all, he has held a variety of ministerial roles, this kind of as Minister for Tradition, Local community and Youth and Instruction Minister, ahead of his latest portfolio.

He was also the Principal Private Secretary to PM Lee between 2005 and 2008, and CEO of Strength Market place Authority prior to he stepped down to enter politics.

However, he promises he lagged behind his peers when he to start with started off doing work.

He disclosed in 2022 that he&#8217d as soon as utilized to join the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) but was rejected.

&#8220They made the decision possibly I was not great sufficient,&#8221 he stated. He eventually joined another ministry, even however he acquired offers from the personal sector soon after graduating.

His colleagues, he mentioned, did better than him at the start off of his occupation, and &#8220moved up quicker&#8221 than him. &#8220But it was high-quality,&#8221 he mentioned. &#8220My person personalized philosophy in life is, don&#8217t compare. You do the finest you can.&#8221

Asked if he ever considered he&#8217d be on this trajectory, he said: &#8220No, of system not,&#8221 describing his daily life as a course of action of discovery. He &#8220unquestionably didn&#8217t&#8221 wake up a single working day and decided he desired to be DPM, he explained with a chortle.

5. Avid reader of sci-fi and international affairs

Rising up, Mr Wong cherished visiting the previous Marine Parade library, wherever he&#8217d borrow sci-fi textbooks as effectively as guitar tomes.

In accordance to this Straits Times post, he&#8217d head there virtually each individual Saturday afternoon and browse for several hours on conclusion.

These times, Mr Wong however possesses a appreciate for books. At the time a year, he&#8217d share his ebook listing on social media, which holds a assortment of genres this sort of as AI, area, leadership, geopolitics, and leadership.

Supply: Lawrence Wong on Facebook

Notably, many of these textbooks have been introduced just months just before Mr Wong study them, which implies he is a person to preserve up with the most recent reserve releases.

In situation you&#8217d like to delve into the mind of what a DPM reads, right here&#8217s a helpful searchable checklist:

  • Eighteen Times in Oct by Uri Kaufman
  • Hidden Likely: The Science of Achieving Bigger Things by Adam Grant
  • Management: Six Research in Entire world Technique by Henry Kissinger
  • How To Know A Human being by David Brooks
  • The Coming Wave by Mustafa Suleyman
  • Accidental Conflict: The united states, China, and the Clash of Phony Narratives by Stephen Roach
  • When The Heavens Went On Sale by Ashlee Vance
  • Under no circumstances Adequate by Jennifer Breheny Wallace
  • How Major Items Get Completed by Bent Flyvbjerg & Dan Gardner

6. Dog lover

Mr Wong&#8217s other recognized wonderful enjoy, besides his guitar and textbooks, is puppies.

He had a golden retriever named Summer months, who died in July 2020. In his tribute to Summer season, Mr Wong mentioned:

&#8220Thank you for bringing so significantly love and joy to our life.&#8221

While it does not appear that he has owned a different pet considering the fact that, he professed in a social media write-up in 2023 that he likes all doggy breeds.

Having said that, he still seems to like golden retrievers most, as according to him, they are affectionate and pretty mild. &#8220The moment you present them some adore and affection, they&#8217ll return it in spades&#8221.

They are also attractive to cuddle and snuggle with, he mentioned.

Have news you need to share? Get in touch with us by way of e-mail at [email protected].

Featured picture tailored from Teo Chee Hean on Fb and Lawrence Wong on Facebook.

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‘Rainbow clouds’ seen in Tampines on 13 April, iridescence dubbed as S’pore’s Northern Lights

Netizens share wonderful photos of rainbow colors alongside clouds in Tampines

Though the famed &#8220Northern Lights&#8221 will under no circumstances make an look in Singapore, some men and women consider we have our very own model.

Final Saturday (13 April), breathtaking rainbows were viewed along with clouds in Tampines.

Resource: Andrew Teo by way of CloudSpotting & SkySpotting Singapore on Fb

The phenomenon, identified as cloud iridescence, has also been likened to Paddle Pop ice cream.

Rainbow clouds noticed in Tampines

Gorgeous pictures of the iridescence ended up shared by netizen Andrew Teo in the CloudSpotting & SkySpotting Singapore Fb group over the weekend.

He mentioned he took them at about 6pm final Saturday (13 April), from a site in Tampines.

In his pics, the fantastic rainbow colours have been at the edges of the clouds, as nevertheless they had been staying included by them.

Supply: Andrew Teo by way of CloudSpotting & SkySpotting Singapore on Facebook

The swirls of multicoloured light-weight lit up the darkening sky about them and caused other clouds to be bathed in the bright hues as well.

Supply: Andrew Teo by way of CloudSpotting & SkySpotting Singapore on Fb

Rainbow clouds in Tampines when compared to Northern Lights

Mr Teo compared the sight to the Northern Lights, normally witnessed only in high-latitude areas all-around the Arctic and Antarctic.

Other individuals have also likened it to Paddle Pop, an ice product popsicle acknowledged for obtaining similarly whimsical colors.

Source: Pleased Ice

Nonetheless, Mr Teo also described the phenomenon as iridescent clouds.

According to EarthSky, this is brought about by small ice crystals or water droplets in the air that diffract the gentle, developing the rainbow-like influence.

Iridescent clouds are not to be confused with circumhorizon arcs. In the latter, the colors are related but are neatly organised in a band with pink on major and violet at the base.

Netizens share photographs of iridescent clouds

In reaction to the publish, other netizens shared their shots of the iridescent clouds taken on the same day.

An additional image taken in Tampines showed the lively scene higher than a block of flats.

Supply: Charlotte Chua on Fb

A netizen was lucky enough to catch a portion of it above Our Tampines Hub.

Resource: Shizuka Liew on Facebook

The iridescence wasn&#8217t confined to Tampines, as a netizen also saw the pigments in the skies above the Singapore Expo at about 7pm.

Resource: Pauline Eri Na Na on Fb

A person girl didn&#8217t have to go considerably, capturing the scarce eyesight from the vantage issue of her balcony.

Supply: Lyn Da Bren on Facebook

The very last time iridescent clouds had been documented in Singapore was in May 2023, when they had been noticed in the sky earlier mentioned Seletar Aerospace Park.

Also read through: Iridescent Clouds On 24 May well Look Like Northern Lights, S&#8217poreans Marvel At Uncommon Sight

Iridescent Clouds On 24 May well Look Like Northern Lights, S&#8217poreans Marvel At Exceptional Sight

Have news you will have to share? Get in contact with us by using e mail at [email protected].

Featured image tailored from Andrew Teo through CloudSpotting & SkySpotting Singapore on Fb.

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