Comparing Singapore and the Philippines

It is unavoidable that, as at the moment, the place and standing of Singapore is a little farther up the ladder than Philippines. A myriad of factors have, over a number of decades, led to the varied differences to nations that once appeared peers. Whereas it is logical to attribute the differences to the efficient and industrious nature of the Singaporean people, due caution should be observed in drawing such conclusions in the face of an inextricable web of different situations that have faced both countries over time. In addition, both countries have faced serious economic upheavals in the last century that clearly defined the future of each nation. These are not without economic ramifications on each nation. This article explores the consideration that the two countries are different, albeit in almost abstract terms.



Human Development index 


To begin with, Singapore has an enviably low unemployment rate (1.90%) as compared to that of Philippines. Arguably, the higher GDP of Singapore (in excess of $67,000) contributes to this phenomenon. As a result, a person living in Singapore is much likely to make 13.3 more money in plying their usual trades than one would make while in the Philippines. When employees make more money, the resulting indication is the fact that the country’s businesses will be performing better and with positive projected income margins. This is necessary in improving a country’s human development index. As a result, the Human Development Index (HDI) is higher in Singapore than Philippines. The result is a better predisposition to realization of aspirations and individual human development in Singapore than in Philippines.


Crime Rates


Only 0.30 people in a sample population of 100,000 people are likely to die in Singapore as compared to the significant number of more 9.30 people in similar populations in Philippines. The high rate of crime in the Philippines can be attributed to the drug menace that the country face — and has tried to eliminate, although in equally unlawful means, in recent days. The statistics point to the idea that criminal tendencies are particularly notable in the densely populated residential areas occupied by the low class masses in Manila and other towns. These areas are particularly plagued with incessant government and drug cartels fights. Notably, the higher crime rates in Philippines not only hurt the image of the country (and lowers chances of foreign investments) but also its people!


Singapore, on the other hand has been lauded as the best place where one can do business with ease. Among the factors that are considered to reach this conclusion is safety. Of course safety has to do with the progress of a country in significant ways. For instance, businesses, property and people have to be safe in order to normally function.


Tax Regime


Filipinos pay higher taxes than Singaporeans. Accordingly, a comparison of taxes in a number of nations reveal that the Corporate Income Tax in Philippines stands at 30% based on taxable profit. This figure can be termed unfair when compared to Singapore’s 17%. Further, employer based contributions for its workers (as based on their gross salaries) stands at a single figure of 16% in Singapore as compared to Philippines 2.89- 6.50% for social security contributions, 1.16%- 1.19% for health insurance, and a host of other taxes that comparably raises the figure to that of more than the 16% charged by Singapore. In addition, the threshold Value Added Tax (VAT) is 12% in Philippines as compared to Singapore’s 7%.


The significant variations in tax have led to clarion calls for tax reforms in Philippines. Objectively, higher taxes are a turn off to investments and greatly hamper the developmental agenda of the Philippine people.


Cost of Healthcare


It is undeniably that the economy of Singapore sustains its medical facilities and makes them some of the most efficient and effective. Nevertheless, that does not come without cost implications on the consumers of the medical services of the country. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a Singaporean is likely to spend 20.4 times on access to healthcare than a typical person in Philippines. The implications may include, but not limited to, significantly higher medical cover premiums, higher costs of pharmaceutical products and better service quality. An average Filipino may not, after all, access the quality of medical care that Singaporean may be entitled to.


Class Divide


According to the CIA world fact book, the GINI index is essential in determining how countries distribute family income. In this sense, Singapore’s score of 46.30 makes it to experience 3.35% more of a class divide as compared to Philippine’s score of 44.80. The lower the GINI index, the more equal a country is. According to this index, Singapore is slightly more inclined to experience potential consequences that result from class divides than Philippines. To explain this, it is arguable that the existence of a significant gap in cumulative family income fares better in the case of Philippines when plotted against the number of families arranged from those that are poor to the wealthiest.




In conclusion, Philippines faces major obstacles that competitively harm its position and standing in the region. The country has a comparatively high tax regime. This effectively hurts the masses, whose jobs attract almost mediocre wages except those in senior positions. In addition, Philippines’ high crime rates are a pointer to the higher index of poverty and unemployment. A combination of these and other factors contribute to the reduced levels of human development— whose index is much lower than that of Singapore.

On the other hand, Singapore needs to level some effort in bringing down the cost of healthcare. Government subsidies, better medical cover agreements and proper utilization of government health facilities may be the necessary efforts needed cushion the consumers of the country’s healthcare against potential exorbitant medical costs. In addition, Singapore consistently scores lower than most other regional countries in terms the class-divide. When left unattended to, this is a major contributor to dissatisfaction with government and general discontentment.