August 11th 2001


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Articles from this issue:

Cover Story: The building industry's Royal Commission

Canberra Observed: Telstra creates headache for Beazley pledge

Straws in the Wind: Peter's Friends

Western Australia: WA Liberals' preference deal could be decisive

Red light districts don't work

The Media

Singapore funds (letter)

Tony Abbott criticised (letter)

Birth dearth (letter)

Parenting payments (letter)

Tree cover (letter)

Drug Deaths (letter)

Middle Ages climate (letter)

LAW: International Criminal Court: the dangers

The companies driving US-Australia free trade agreement

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Singapore funds (letter)


by Dr Michael Barr

News Weekly, August 11, 2001
Sir,

Your editorial "Singapore: Lessons for Australia" (NW, July 14, 2001) contained a fundamental error of fact. It stated that Temasek Holdings (through which the Singapore Government maintains its ownership of a large proportion of the Singapore economy) is capitalised from the Central Provident Fund (CPF).

This is completely untrue. Temasek Holdings is capitalised by direct government investment. The CPF invests much more conservatively (mortgages, bonds, some national infrastructure, etc.) and certainly does not "bankroll Singapore's moves into industries, such as banking, computers and communications" throughout Singapore and the region.

Of course this error does not negate the general points you wish to make and with which I completely agree: that Australia should "mobilise its huge superannuation funds for domestic investment" and that "small countries ... cannot build world class competitive industries ... and keep them in domestic hands without government co-operation and support".

Dr Michael Barr,
Centre for Community and Cross-Cultural Studies,
Queensland University of Technology,
Carseldine, Qld




























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