Singapore and China digest (22-26 January)

2023 was Singapore’s 4th hottest year on record

2023 was Singapore’s joint fourth-warmest year since records started in 1929, with sweltering temperatures logged in May and October breaking records for those months. The Meteorological Service Singapore (MSS) said on Jan 22 that 2023 also ranked the seventh-wettest here in more than 40 years, with annual rainfall being 13.1 per cent above the long-term average, or the average over 30 years.

Robot deliveries, unmanned 7-Eleven store at retail innovation hub
Workers in South Beach’s office tower can now get purchases such as ready-to-eat meals, drinks and snacks from a nearby 7-Eleven store delivered directly to them by a robot. The fleet of seven robots by home-grown start-up QuikBot Technologies can navigate the maze of lifts, walkways and office gantries autonomously, and even hand items over to one another along the way. Orders are placed through the QuikBot app. Bot delivery is part of a host of concepts now in operation under Hive 2.0, a high-tech retail innovation hub at Esplanade Xchange. The air-conditioned underground retail strip linked to Esplanade MRT station is operated by SMRT’s business arm Stellar Lifestyle.
Famous popiah and Peranakan kueh chang shops are latest additions to NHB’s heritage galleries

The shop now has a “mini museum” showcasing artefacts from its earlier years, as part of an initiative by the National Heritage Board (NHB) to document the heritage of businesses in Singapore. These artefacts include a coin that was placed in a rice steamer and used as a makeshift alarm, as well as a pair of sandals worn by Madam Lee, which is adorned with Peranakan motifs that symbolise love and harmony.
China's grain output hits record high in 2023
China's grain output hit a record high of 695.4 million tonnes in 2023, an increase of 8.8 million tonnes compared to the previous year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs on Tuesday. This is the ninth consecutive year China registered a grain harvest of over 650 million tonnes. The per-capita grain output exceeded 490 kilograms, surpassing the internationally recognized security line of 400 kilograms.
Asia Financial Forum leading financial cooperation in the region

The Asia Financial Forum (AFF) is being held in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region from January 24 to 25. As one of the most influential economic events in Asia, it carries the crucial mission of promoting financial cooperation and fostering regional economic development. The standing of the AFF in Asia is undeniable. With the globalization process, Asia's prominence in the global economy is steadily rising. Serving as an engine for global economic growth, Asia encompasses not only some of the world's largest economies but also gathers many emerging markets and developing countries. The AFF serves as a common platform for governments, financial institutions, businesses and international investors across the region, fostering economic cooperation and dialogue.