Singapore - Transportation

Singapore's history is partly the history of the island-country's important regional role as a transportation link between East and West and between the mainland and insular portions of Southeast Asia. As long ago as 1822—only three years after the establishment of a British colonial presence on the island—1,575 ships called at the new port of Singapore from nearby islands, Europe, India, and China. With a natural deepwater harbor that is open the year round, Singapore now ranks as the largest container port in the world, with anchorage facilities that can accommodate supertankers. Ships of some 600 shipping lines, flying the flags of nearly all the maritime nations of the world, regularly call at Singapore. In 2001, Singapore's merchant fleet was comprised of 876 ships, totaling 20,686,612 GRT.

Commercial air service was inaugurated in Singapore in 1930. In 2001 there were 9 airports, all of which had paved runways. The two principal air facilities are Changi International and Seletar Airport. Singapore's own flag carrier is Singapore Airlines. In 2001, 16,373,600 passengers were carried on scheduled domestic and international flights.

There were 3,150 km (1,9,57 mi) of roadways in 2002, of which 3,066 km (1,905 mi) were paved, including 150 km (93 mi) of expressways. In 2001, there were 545,251 motor vehicles, of which 405,354 were automobiles. Singapore's sole rail facility is a 38.6-km (24-mi) section of the Malayan Railways, which links Singapore to Kuala Lumpur. There is also an 83-km (52-mi) mass transit system with 48 stations.

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