Edited by Yung Chul Park, Takatoshi Ito and Yunjong Wang
Chapter 9: Recycling Asian Savings within the Region: The Role of Singapore
Ngiam Kee Jin 1. INTRODUCTION A source as well as a sink for internationally mobile capital, Singapore has successfully created a ﬁnancial hub within the Asian region wherein eﬃcient, well regulated capital markets co-exist with adequately capitalized and ﬁnancially sound banking groups.1 The country can boast of an established and well-oiled market infrastructure within which market makers, clearing systems, settlement procedures and knowledgeable investors set high standards for the region and beyond. A liberalized ﬁnancial system which provides easy access to foreign investors as well as issuers results in a cosmopolitan business environment. The freedom for foreigners to invest here is evidenced by the fact that 92 per cent of the non-Singapore dollar debt issued in the oﬀshore market is held by foreigners. Foreign ﬁrms and professionals are welcomed into the country. Firms originating in nations across the globe operate in this island nation. The importance of the country to their activities is underscored by the fact that of the 6000 foreign companies presently in Singapore, 60 per cent use the country as their Asian headquarters.2 Active and eﬀective governmental participation and encouragement with regards to the development of domestic capital markets as well as networks with markets and economies regionally and globally create a unique ﬁnancial center that can function as a springboard to developed markets of the West. Singapore is blessed with an unassailable record of political and ﬁnancial stability and low corruption. This combined with the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s (MAS) commitment to adequate...
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