Latest News:  

English>>Foreign Affairs

Singapore FM says bus drivers' strike unlikely to affect ties with China


10:56, January 15, 2013

SINGAPORE, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- Singapore's Foreign Minister K Shanmugam said that he does not expect the bilateral ties between China and Singapore to be affected by a recent industrial action taken by Chinese bus drivers working in Singapore.

Responding to questions raised by lawmakers on Monday, Shanmugam said that the actions by the drivers are being dealt with in accordance with Singapore's laws.

"Our laws apply equally to all Singaporeans and foreigners residing in Singapore, so we see this strictly as a matter of law enforcement and do not expect the incidents to affect relations between Singapore and China," he told lawmakers.

More than 170 bus drivers took medical leaves at the same time in November last year in a rare protest against unequitable pay rises and discriminatory practices that the drivers said existed at local public transport operator SMRT. It was the first strike in decades in Singapore, where authorities discourage industrial actions by making them very difficult with legal restrictions. Instead, it has in place a tripartite consultation mechanism involving the employers, the workers and the government.

Singapore's Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin soon declared the incident an illegal strike. Five bus drivers were charged later and 29 others were deported to China.

One of the drivers charged pleaded guilty without a lawyer and was sentenced to six weeks in jail. Court proceedings were still ongoing against the other four, with lawyers representing them on pro bono basis.

We Recommend:

Unwise foreign policy turns Japan into its own enemy

Observe China through diplomatic hot words

China to surpass U.S. by 2049: report

BRICS remain engines for global economic growth

Can Abe's tortuous diplomacy contain China?

Cold War mentality fuels U.S. satellite export prejudice


Related Reading

Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name


Selections for you

  1. Carrier-based aircraft unit in flight training

  2. J-10 fighters over E. China Sea

  3. Countries with the cleanest air

  4. Chengdu braces for holiday travel rush

  5. The strongest left-behind children

  6. Heavy fog envelops Chinese cities

  7. North American auto show kicks off in Detroit

  8. Food and flower festivals

  9. Have fun picking strawberries in Jinshan

  10. Harbin International Ice and Snow Festival 2013

Most Popular


  1. Heavy smog reveals generation gap
  2. A very rash act by the US
  3. Message of caution for Japan
  4. Adding mortar to the BRICS
  5. Children without parents still lack help, protection
  6. Philippines moves in wrong direction
  7. Drinking water safety is not a simple problem
  8. Japan's envisaged 'warning shots' dangerous
  9. When Chinese wives meet American mothers-in-law
  10. Will you leave a city because of cold?

What’s happening in China

Extinction of river dolphin: What does it mean for the Yangtze River?

  1. Such 'evasion' is a shame of education
  2. Snow eases air pollution in Beijing, more or less
  3. Bureau tried to 'borrow' orphans from temple
  4. Shoppers snap up air purifiers to beat the smog
  5. Authorities to boost wild bird protection