Singapore digest news (12.09-16.09)

Photo from URA Singapore

Singapore Design Week set to showcase excellence and diversity of southeast Asian design

Design Week will open in Singapore for the first time since 2019.
Over 50 events will take place during Singapore Design Week in September 2022, which presents a range of exhibitions, workshops and talks made possible by over 200 designers and creatives.

Organised by DesignSingapore Council, Singapore Design Week (SDW) is one of Asia's largest design festivals, which returns this September after a two-year hiatus to present the “best of design from Singapore and beyond”.

The design week aims to showcase Singapore's "distinct brand of creativity" and takes place from 16 to 25 September 2022.

“We are excited to unveil the brand new Singapore Design Week which will grow recognition of our UNESCO Creative City of Design as a leading design hub, establish our design thought leadership, and raise awareness of the value of design,” said executive director of DesignSingapore Council, Dawn Lim.


New microbiome research centre to tackle obesity and chronic diseases

NTU Singapore today launched the Centre for Microbiome Medicine – a research facility that aims to improve human health and find new ways to treat diseases by leveraging the microbiome, which are naturally present microorganisms that play a vital role in our wellbeing.

The research centre at NTU Singapore’s LKCMedicine will work with partners including the National Healthcare Group, Imperial College London, and the Singapore-based precision gut microbiome company AMILI to unravel the mechanisms behind microbiome and diseases. 

The new research centre is led by Programme Director, Associate Professor Sunny Wong from LKCMedicine, and the facility will focus its research in the areas of Nutrition and Metabolism, Airway and Environment, Cancers, as well as infections and other neurological and skin diseases.


Singapore to allow national flag to be displayed more often; raises penalty for misuse

The Singapore flag can be displayed more often, including potentially outside the National Day period, after a Bill was passed in Parliament on Tuesday (Sep 13).

It comes after feedback from the public to allow greater flexibility in the use of the national symbols during various consultation exercises conducted over the last two years.

Speaking in Parliament, Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth Low Yen Ling said Singaporeans have increasingly sought to use the flag and other national symbols to show their national pride and solidarity in ways not anticipated by the 1959 rules.


Singapore wealthtech investments up 605% in 4 years amid Asian wealth boom

VENTURE funding in wealth management startups in Singapore surged in recent years as companies looked to address gaps in the market neglected by traditional wealth managers.
Driven by its financial hub status and growing high net worth population, Singapore recorded a jump in wealthtech investments to US$161 million in 2021 from US$23 million in 2017, according to a report by KPMG and digital wealth manager Endowus.

During this period, Singapore’s share of Asian wealthtech investments grew from 2 per cent to 7 per cent, according to the report, which analysed data from PitchBook. Asian wealthtech funding doubled to US$2.2 billion from US$1.1 billion.


Total employment hits 99.5% of pre-pandemic levels, but labour market recovery still 'uneven across sectors': MOM

With firms now filling more job positions, the total number of people employed here in the second quarter this year reached 99.5 per cent of pre-Covid-19 levels, fuelled by a "significant increase" in non-resident employment.

Total employment in the second quarter increased by 66,500, which was significantly higher than the 42,000 increase in the first quarter, a report released by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) on Wednesday (Sept 14) showed.

In the second quarter alone, resident employment rose by 7,100, while non-resident employment increased by 59,400. Across the first half of this year, total employment – which excludes foreign domestic workers — had expanded by 108,500.

The increase was mainly contributed by non-residents (95,400), particularly in the construction and manufacturing sectors, as "employers backfilled positions following the significant relaxation of border controls in April 2022", MOM said.