Sunday, 21 December 2014

The Main Reason Why Things Are So Expensive in Singapore?



Recently, I came across a post on The Real Singapore. This post is written by a local writer/blogger named Low Kay Hwa. Read on.



In Singapore, I do stop my car at the road, leave the car and engine running, walk out and buy my food. If anyone wants to steal it, it takes just one step and one second: get in and drive off.

In Singapore, when I’m tired in school, I do leave my handphone and wallet around me and drop my head on the table for a nap. You just need to walk past me and you’ll own my handphone and wallet.

Think about it: Why am I so daring? Well, not really.

When I’m in Malaysia, I lock my car even when I’m driving. I don’t even bring my main wallet in. 99% of the time, my handphone is in my pocket.

See the difference?

I’ve a friend who told me that in the Philippines, he won’t take out his handphone and message on the go. “People would just snatch it,” he explained. I thought he was referring to the sub-urban area. “No,” he said. He was referring to the city, Manila—a developed city much like Singapore.

While we can complain about the high living expenses and the lack of opportunities, we cannot dismiss the fact that we’re in one of the safest countries in the world with the least corruption. Do I dare to eat anything being sold in Singapore? Yes, because I know AVA and HSA have them covered. Do I dare to do that in other countries? No, I don’t.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve always thought of the high living expenses are justified because of this efficiency. You pay for what you get. But have we taken things for granted? Despite such a safe environment and a system to prevent corruption, people still want more. Car prices increase and people want COE to drop (though not all). ERP is built and people complain. MRT breaks down and for some reason, we bring it to the top.

As we complain, have we even thought of why we do that—is it because Singapore has become too good that we’re not used to a little mistake like flooding? Have we become so complacent that we can’t tolerate small mistakes and expect drastic improvement?

Have we become so used to such a quiet environment that a wind gushing is considered noise?

I don’t speak for anyone, so I don’t know. But what I know is that when I lock my car, I’ve just appreciated Singapore a little bit more.


Low Kay Hwa


After reading through, I would like to know what does readers think? Do you agree?

Let's take a look at some of the commenters of this post on Facebook.






The writer justifies the high expenses in Singapore and feels it is reasonable for the high efficiency. Then I would like to ask this writer, has he seen for himself how the less fortunate in Singapore are doing? Is it fair for them to pay higher costs in return for the security and efficiency in Singapore?


"I don’t know about you, but I’ve always thought of the high living expenses are justified because of this efficiency. You pay for what you get. But have we taken things for granted? Despite such a safe environment and a system to prevent corruption, people still want more. Car prices increase and people want COE to drop (though not all). ERP is built and people complain. MRT breaks down and for some reason, we bring it to the top.

As we complain, have we even thought of why we do that—is it because Singapore has become too good that we’re not used to a little mistake like flooding? Have we become so complacent that we can’t tolerate small mistakes and expect drastic improvement?

Have we become so used to such a quiet environment that a wind gushing is considered noise?"


I ask readers, are we truly complacent that we can't tolerate small mistakes? Are the things that have been happening in Singapore all small mistakes? I don't know, it may be a marketing ploy for readers to find out more about him. But, personally I just lost whatever respect I used to have for this writer and his books.

Till next time,
Teenage Investor

10 comments:

  1. Hi Teenager,

    To prevent corruption, ministers are paid crazily high salaries.

    I hope my salary will increase to prevent me abandoning singapore during war.

    Ironic isn't it..

    Cheers!
    Jfree

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If high salaries are needed to prevent corruption, then perhaps these people shouldn't be in politics.
      Cheers Jfree!

      Delete
  2. Hi TI,

    Like to share my opinion if you do not mind. Everybody has a pair of coloured lens from which we see the world. For the author, he chose to equate a safe and secure environment with a high cost of living.

    I cannot comment whether his view is correct, as I have not collected data to analyse and come to a conclusion. As such, I can only acknowledge that this is just one view of how someone sees the world.

    Another person with the poor in mind may totally disagree and reject the notion put forth. Again, the other person is just seeing the world from another angle.

    When we are able to accept these different views without bias or judgement, wisdom is gained.

    Just sharing my view of the world. No offense. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi no offence taken SRSI!
      Agreed, many people view things differently. But the writer is coming across as either being too arrogant or he is not aware of what the less fortunate in SG are doing. I often volunteer at home shelters and pet shelters and all these people and animals could do so much better with the help from the government.

      Delete
  3. By the way, it's quite easy to throw a spanner into the author's argument.

    People often reminisce about the 'kampung spirit' in the olden days, where it is safe to leave the door of the house unlocked. The cost of living was still low then, isn't it?

    ReplyDelete
  4. Everyone sees things through his own filtered optics. Does Low see that most Singaporeans use multiple door locks and steel gates on front door and ALL windows? Most homes in other countries don't have steel gated windows and doors. Who is more unsecured?

    Singapore ranks among the "top" cities in the world. Is flooding just as common in London, New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul? Does public transport break down as often in those cities?

    Did he leave his car unlock in his neighbourhood car park?

    If he is so confident that no one will want his handphone, I challenge him to leave his iPhone 6 in a hawker center and wait for someone to return it to him.

    Btw, Manila is not as developed as Singapore as he claims.

    His view is just so skewed...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Anon! Yes his view is very skewed. He is not aware of what's really going on

      Delete
  5. This may make me sounds old but I do miss the old days in the 1990s to early 2000s... it seems like to me those were the better days and it has went downhill since then with most of the things here. I'm worried for my next generation if they are to continue staying in this island. Sigh...

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hey Stockskeeper! Yes I do miss the old days too, those were definitely happier days compared to now.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi TI,

    It's quite a colourful blog you have here, touching on topics besides investing. I also follow TRS but I have learnt to take everything with a pinch of salt as every side has its own agenda and may not be as unbiased as you might think.

    Personally, these social issues such as high cost of living, lack of a social welfare etc have made me realise the importance of financial planning and given me impetus to start investing now when I'm still young. It is not as simple as VTO as many TRS followers would proclaim. These social issues are complicated and out of our control, but at the very least we should control how we react to them.

    ReplyDelete