Capitalism, Inequality, and Ideology in Singapore

Singapore has experienced one of the most rapid capitalist transformations in Asia. From the late 1960s to the early 1980s, this was accompanied by remarkable material and social improvements for the vast bulk of Singaporeans, and sustained political support for the People’s Action Party (PAP). However, its economic model is now generating uneven social impacts, heightened social contradictions and thus new political challenges for the ruling party.

The PAP suffered a combined loss of 15% support at the 2006 and 2011 general elections, amid widespread concerns about inequalities, living costs, declining social mobility, immigration and public infrastructure. In 2011, its vote share dipped to its lowest level since independence in 1965.[1]

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