Singapore today unveiled plans to become a world leading global hub in retail premises demolition, refurbishment and re-construction by 2025. Speaking from a hastily erected podium littered with rubble at iconic shopping destination Orchard Road, the Minister for National Redevelopment launched the strategic roadmap to much fan-fare.
“Since we realised we spend almost as much time demolishing and rebuilding our shopping malls as we do actually shopping in them, it seemed sensible to leverage our experience in this field into a new – seventeenth pillar – of our economy.”
“This is definitely the most important strategic ten-year plan we’ve kicked off so far this week” the minister continued. “Yesterday’s Intellectual Property Masterplan was of course significant, not to mention last month’s Space and Satellite Strategic Review, but given the scarcity of land in Singapore, nothing makes more sense right now than relentlessly demolishing and rebuilding the same shopping malls over and over again as a show of our strength in an industry we predict will only get bigger”
There were a few awkward moments at the post-launch press conference when some analysts wondered out-loud whether Singapore’s economy would not be better served with shopping centres which are actually open for people to shop in. These concerns were quickly put to rest however with a presentation on the spiralling cost of living in the city-state that leaves locals with less and less disposable income each month. “Since no one has cash in hand to fritter away on fancy goods these days, there is actually no point to open our malls for retail business anymore” an aide helpfully clarified.
The significance of this master plan was underscored by a supporting press release from Singapore’s two sovereign wealth funds. Penned jointly by senior management from Temasek Holdings and GIC, the statement made clear that both funds see this project as central to Singapore’s economic development.
“Of course we are very much in support of this, since it was in fact originally our own idea. We were making love one night when suddenly the Chairman of GIC was overwhelmed with a feeling of great euphoria. I thought he had finished too quickly, but it turned out that he had actually just conceived this ten-year master plan, one which will solve all our economic problems in the blink of an eye.
“Most importantly, an endless cycle of mall-refurbishment programs will allow us to collect increased foreign workers levies indefinitely into the future, and with these revenues my husband / GIC Chairman / the Prime Minister may not need to raise GST beyond 13% after the next election. Furthermore, there will be practically no limit to the number Real Estate Investment Trusts that Temasek and GIC can list locally, overseas or in fact in outer space.
“Although falling disposable incomes means spending opportunities for locals in our malls will be reduced, we do plan to offset this by dictating significantly increased employer CPF contributions. The clever part is that these increased deposits will not be used to buy worthless government debt as CPF funds usually are, but will rather be invested in our own listed REITs. These inflows will then be used to fund further and ceaseless rounds of demolition and re-construction of retail premises. There is literally nothing that could possibly go wrong with this plan.”