Singapore in 1965 was neither underdog nor Third World

Ohhh yeee

Yours Truly Singapore

Underdog made good

I refer to the 25 July 2014 Straits Times letter “Underdog made good” by Mr Jeremy Cheong Weng Kee.

Mr Cheong characterized Singapore in 1965 as the underdog that overcame the odds to succeed. Far from it, Singapore was already ranked Third in Asia and 29th out of 109 countries in output side per capita GDP (2005 PPP USD) back in 1965 (Penn World tables version 8.0), not top notch but neither underdog either.

We were also more than just the underdogs because:

• Singapore had become a global port that could rival any other in the world by the time the Suez Canal opened in 1869 and with the advent of the steamship revolution in the latter half of the nineteenth century
[Derek Thiam Soon Heng, Syed Muhd Khairudin Aljunied, Singapore in Global History, page 57]

• Singapore was already the estimated 5th or 6th most…

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