Singapore - Essay Example

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Singapore is a small, heavily urbanized, island city-state in Southeast Asia, located between Malaysia and Indonesia (Geography and climate). It is one of the "world cities" and the fastest growing port of Asia. Singapore city is the capital, largest city, and main port…
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Download file to see previous pages Singapore's main territory is a diamond-shaped island, although her territory includes surrounding smaller islands. Of Singapore's dozens of smaller islands, Jurong Island, Pulau Tekong, Pulau Ubin and Sentosa are the larger ones. Most of Singapore is no more than 15 meters above sea level. The highest point of Singapore is Bukit Timah, with a height of 164 m or 538 feet and made up of igneous rock, granite. Hills and valleys of sedimentary rock dominate the northwest, while the eastern region consists of sandy and flatter land (Geography and climate).
Singapore does not have any natural lakes or rivers, however, reservoirs and water catchments areas were constructed to collect fresh water for Singapore's water supply. Singapore has reclaimed land with earth obtained from its own hills, the seabed, and neighboring countries. As a result, Singapore's land area has grown from 581.5 km in the 1960s to 697.1 km today, and may grow by another 100 km by 2030 (Geography and climate). Singapore has no noteworthy natural resources other than its deep-water harbor. Less than 5% of Singapore's land is used for agriculture; tropical fruits and vegetables are intensively cultivated and poultry and hogs are raised. There are no profitable natural resources in the country (Economy).
Singapore was a trading center in the Srivijaya Empire before it was destroyed in the 14th cent. by the Majapahit empire. It later became part of Johore in the Malacca Sultanate. The thinly populated island was ceded (1819) to the British East India Company through the efforts of Sir T. Stamford Raffles; he founded the modern city of Singapore there that same year. In 1824, Singapore came under the complete control of the British and, although containing only a little fishing and trading village, quickly attracted Chinese and Malay merchants. The port grew quickly, soon overwhelming Penang and Malacca in importance. Then Singapore became part of the Straits Settlements in 1826 (The development of Singapore).


Figure 2 Statue of Thomas Stamford Raffles
by Thomas Woolner, erected at the spot where
he first landed in Singapore (Singapore).

The progress of Malaya under British rule in the late 19th and early 20th cent. made Singapore one of the most important ports of the world for the export of tin and rubber. The construction of a railroad through the Malay Peninsula to Bangkok swelled Singapore's trade, and the building of airports made it more than ever a communication center. A naval base at Sembawang, begun in 1924, was completed in 1938; the island, sometimes called the Malta of the East, was reinforced in the early days of World War II (The development of Singapore). After the speedy Japanese crusade in Malaya, however, Singapore was successfully attacked across the Johore Strait, and on Feb. 15, 1942, the British garrison surrendered; Singapore was reoccupied by the British in Sept. 1945. In 1946, Singapore, no longer a part of the Straits Settlements, was constituted a crown colony, with Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands. Following a decade of Communist terrorism, Singapore, separated from Christmas Island ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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