Cruising to Singapore


Singapore was founded as a British trading colony in 1819. It joined the Malaysian Federation in 1963 but separated two years later and became independent. It subsequently became one of the world's most prosperous countries with strong international trading links (its port is one of the world's busiest in terms of tonnage handled) and with per capita GDP equal to that of the leading nations of Western Europe.


Location: Southeastern Asia, islands between Malaysia and Indonesia
Geographic coordinates: 1 22 N, 103 48 E
Map references: Southeast Asia
Area: total: 692.7 sq km


193 km

Maritime claims

Territorial sea: 3 nm
Exclusive fishing zone: within and beyond territorial sea, as defined in treaties and practice


Tropical; hot, humid, rainy; two distinct monsoon seasons - Northeastern monsoon (December to March) and Southwestern monsoon (June to September); inter-monsoon - frequent afternoon and early evening thunderstorms


Lowland; gently undulating central plateau contains water catchment area and nature preserve

Elevation extremes

Lowest point: Singapore Strait 0 m
Highest point: Bukit Timah 166 m


Singapore, a highly-developed and successful free-market economy, enjoys a remarkably open and corruption-free environment, stable prices, and a per capita GDP equal to that of the four largest West European countries. The economy depends heavily on exports, particularly in electronics and manufacturing. It was hard hit in 2001-03 by the global recession, by the slump in the technology sector, and by an outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2003, which curbed tourism and consumer spending.

The government hopes to establish a new growth path that will be less vulnerable to the external business cycle and will continue efforts to establish Singapore as Southeast Asia's financial and high-tech hub. Fiscal stimulus, low interest rates, a surge in exports, and internal flexibility led to vigorous growth in 2004, with real GDP rising by 8% - by far the economy's best performance since 2000 - but growth slowed to 5.7% in 2005.


Airports: 9 (2005)
Airports - with paved runways: total: 9
Pipelines: gas 139 km (2004)
Roadways: total: 3,165 km

Merchant marine

Total: 1,003 ships (1000 GRT or over) 29,116,937 GRT/46,517,745 DWT
By type: bulk carrier 149, cargo 85, chemical tanker 128, container 196, liquefied gas 45, livestock carrier 2, petroleum tanker 340, refrigerated cargo 8, roll on/roll off 2, specialized tanker 9, vehicle carrier 39
Foreign-owned: 554 (Australia 6, Bangladesh 1, Belgium 9, China 20, Denmark 44, Germany 7, Greece 8, Hong Kong 53, India 4, Indonesia 49, Japan 93, South Korea 17, Malaysia 35, Netherlands 1, Norway 96, Philippines 3, Slovenia 1, Sweden 12, Taiwan 49, Thailand 23, UAE 7, UK 10, US 6)
Registered in other countries: 277 (The Bahamas 14, Bangladesh 9, Belize 4, Bolivia 2, Cambodia 4, Cyprus 2, Dominica 11, Honduras 12, Hong Kong 25, Indonesia 14, Isle of Man 8, South Korea 1, Liberia 16, Malaysia 56, Marshall Islands 5, Mongolia 8, Nigeria 1, Norway 4, Panama 57, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 7, Thailand 9, Tuvalu 2, Venezuela 1, unknown 5) (2005)

Sailing Specifics: Ports and terminals



Disputes persist with Malaysia over deliveries of fresh water to Singapore, Singapore's extensive land reclamation works, bridge construction, maritime boundaries, and Pedra Branca Island/Pulau Batu Putih - parties agree to ICJ arbitration on island dispute within three years; Indonesia and Singapore pledged in 2005 to finalize their 1973 maritime boundary agreement by defining unresolved areas north of Batam Island; piracy remains a problem in the Malacca Strait    

Other Sailing Destinations in the Region

Brunei - Burma - Cambodia - China - East Timor - Hong Kong - Indonesia - Japan - Macau - Malaysia - North Korea -Philippines - Russia - Singapore - South Korea - Taiwan - Thailand - Vietnam

Further Reading

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