Singapore

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A piece of science fiction is one step closer to reality this morning. In the skies above a major city in Southeast Asia this week, residents and visitors were treated to the sight of a flying taxi.

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One of the world’s richest inventors has dropped an ambitious plan for high-technology manufacturing in Southeast Asia. The decision means a shift for a well-known company and a leading regional economy. 

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New research out this week recalculates some of the costs of climate change. A report from the National Bureau of Economic Research finds the current pace of carbon emissions will cause the U.S. economy to shrink by more than 10% by the year 2100. One country in the Asia Pacific is taking new steps to tackle climate change.

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Following a recent trip to Singapore, State Senator Stanley Chang remains committed to adapting the island nation’s public housing model for Hawaii.

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Travelers are used to occasional schedule disruptions at airports — for reasons ranging from mechanical issues to weather. But over the past week there’s another factor that’s delayed flights at one of Asia’s busiest airports: drones.

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President Trump’s recent visit to Japan included a stop on a Japanese helicopter carrier. The president talked about military exercises involving regional allies, but China is having similar discussions this week.

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Hawai’i is not the only place where residents and governments are wrestling with vacation rentals. It’s a hot topic around the world — including a surprising development this week in one Asian city.

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Flying cars have been part of science fiction stories for many years, but developers are coming closer to produce a flying vehicle. And a company based in Singapore says they could be in the skies over California as soon as next year.

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There’s a new project that’s opening this week in Southeast Asia. It includes a botanical garden, a boutique hotel and the world’s largest indoor waterfall. And it’s opening at the airport.

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Hawaiʻi's state legislature has been looking at Singapore as a possible model for certain kinds of publicly-supported housing. But this week, there are new developments when it comes to another part of Singapore's urban planning.

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Eighty percent of Singapore’s 5.6 million residents live in public housing. A 2-bedroom, 1-bathroom apartment can be purchased on the resale market for around $250,000 U.S. dollars. The island nation’s success in making housing affordable has caught the attention of lawmakers in Hawaiʻi.

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The link between high sugar consumption and health problems has sparked a legislative response in a number of states and overseas. One target is sugary drinks – and one approach has been to apply a special tax on the beverages. In Singapore, that’s just one of the proposals in play, and lawmakers are entering a new phase in considering several ideas to cut sugar consumption.

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A number of countries, cities and counties put an extra tax on sugary drinks. In Hawaii, that policy has been suggested and rejected several times by the legislature. The tax is designed to fight obesity. But one country in the Asia Pacific is considering taking the concept one step further.

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Electric cars are growing in popularity — both on the mainland and in Hawaii.  That’s leading to plans for increased production — including in one Asian nation that may be a bit of a surprise.

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One vision about a space-age future may be closer than you realize. Flying taxis have made appearances in movies, but they may actually be tested as soon as next year in at least one Asia Pacific country — and maybe more.

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Trade tensions between the United States and its economic partners have started to hurt growth around the world. That’s the view of the International Monetary Fund — which this month cut its forecast for global economic growth for this year and next year from nearly 4 percent to 3.7 percent. But for the very wealthy, there is faster growth – especially in the Asia Pacific.

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If you have travel plans coming up that include a flight to Asia, you may be part of the newest wave of airport technology. The idea is to get passengers on their way more quickly — and without having to always take out a passport.

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It was a weekend of celebration in some communities across India – following last week’s Supreme Court ruling that legalized gay sex. The decision overturned a law that was on the books for more than 150 years, and the development is drawing attention from some of India’s neighbors.

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Hawai‘i has one of the lowest rates of smoking in the United States. About 13 percent of local residents smoke, compared to a little more than 17 percent nationally. Several Asian countries have some of the highest smoking rates in the world, but in one place they’re taking new steps to reduce it.

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It’s been a little more than a year since bike sharing hit the streets of Honolulu. The practice has been in operation for a little longer in Singapore, but recent changes in the law have led to some dramatic changes.

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Much of the coverage of President Trump’s meeting with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un has focused on nuclear weapons and missiles. But for the host city of Singapore, some local businesses have focused on less serious topics — including food.

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Singapore is set to host the meeting between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on June 12 – if it happens. But this week, defense ministers from around the Asia-Pacific are gathering there for an annual conference. We have more from Neal Conan in today’s Pacific News Minute.

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A multi-billion dollar rail project may be headed for extinction. The news has nothing to do with Honolulu, but it’s making headlines in Malaysia. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

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It’s official: President Trump will meet North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in about four and a half weeks, on June 12th. The meeting will be held in Singapore. But why that location? HPR’s Bill Dorman has some thoughts in today’s Asia Minute.

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President Trump is not the only world leader dealing with a changing cabinet. The leader of Singapore has announced a series of moves of that are drawing attention from outside the country. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

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A project deadline for a major urban rail project has been delayed—again. But this has nothing to do with Honolulu’s rail. This construction would connect two major urban centers in Southeast Asia. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

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Investigators in Singapore have uncovered what they call a “highly sophisticated” cheating scandal involving standardized school tests. The case involves allegations of a network of organizers and half a dozen clients. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

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One topic policy makers in Hawai‘i are still struggling with is short-term vacation rentals. Groups like Airbnb operate around the world—but in one location in the Asia Pacific, it’s still facing some very basic challenges. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

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A majority of states now allow the use of medical marijuana. And research in the area continues in a number of states. It’s also going on in other locations—including one in the Asia Pacific that may be surprising. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

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Within the Asia Pacific region, Singapore is often held up as an example where free markets and the rule of law have combined to produce a prosperous society. But Singapore is now coming under growing criticism for a lack of enforcement in one area of the law: a form of video piracy. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

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