This is a very important article.
It shows you what the PAP has been doing with your CPF for the past 34 years and how the PAP has been trying to hide what it has been doing.
It is a short article with pictures. Please read.
In 2001, Lee Kuan Yew was quoted as saying, “GIC does not use CPF funds“.
He said: “I want to clarify that there is no direct link between the GIC and the CPF.”
In 2006, Lee Kuan Yew said that, “there is no connection between GIC’s rate of return and the interest paid on CPF accounts“.
In 2007, the Worker’s Party’s Low Thia Kiang asked in Parliament, “Does the Government Investment Corporation (GIC) use money derived from CPF to invest?”
Then-Manpower Minister Ng Eng Hen said, “The answer is no.”
In spite of the PAP’s denials, there were many rumours that the CPF is actually being taken by the PAP to invest in GIC and Temasek Holdings.
I wanted to look for evidence for myself to see if the GIC is really invested in the CPF, or not.
I trawled through the government websites to find out.
In 2012, I finally had the answer.
I found out that “CPF monies are invested in bonds.”
These bonds are “invested in reserves“.
“Our reserves are managed by three agencies – the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC), Temasek Holdings (Temasek) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).”
I finally found out the truth – Singaporeans’ CPF is indeed invested in the GIC and Temasek Holdings.
But I could not find one single website which had this information. I had to look through 4 different government websites before I was able to trace the information.
Why was the information not made available on one website?
In 2006, Lee Kuan Yew said that, “there is no connection between GIC’s rate of return and the interest paid on CPF accounts”.
He also said: “The GIC invests the Government’s reserves”.
And that: “The CPF invests members’ savings only in absolutely risk-free Singapore government bonds.”
But the truth is that Lee Kuan Yew knew that the government bonds are invested in the reserves, which are invested by the GIC. If so, why did he said that there is “no connection” between GIC and CPF?
In May last year, I was sued.
I was told to take down three articles where I had shown the evidence above of how the CPF is indeed being invested in the GIC and Temasek Holdings.
After I was told to take down the articles, the information suddenly disappeared from the government websites.
The PAP changed and deleted the information on these websites.
There are 2 specific changes.
First, the PAP initially said: “All the proceeds from the Government’s borrowing must therefore be invested in reserves”.
However, they removed the phrase, “in reserves”. This prevented Singaporeans from knowing that the SSGS (and thereby the CPF) is actually invested in the reserves.
What’s more, the whole PDF document which contained this statement was taken down, edited to remove this phrase and then uploaded onto a separate link.
Second, the PAP initially said: “Our reserves are managed by three agencies – the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC), Temasek Holdings (Temasek) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).”
But they changed it to: “The Government’s assets are mainly managed by GIC Private Limited. The Government also places deposits with the MAS; in turn, MAS as a statutory board holds its own assets on its balance sheet. In addition, the Government is the sole equity shareholder of Temasek Holdings (Temasek). Temasek owns the assets on its balance sheet.”
The PAP completely changed the information. It became impossible to know that our reserves (and our CPF) are managed by GIC, Temasek Holdings and the MAS.
At first, it was clear that the reserves (and our CPF) are managed by the MAS, GIC and Temasek Holdings.
However, the PAP changed and deleted the information, and thus prevented Singaporeans from knowing that the reserves (and the CPF) are actually being managed by the MAS, GIC and Temasek Holdings.
These two key changes that the PAP made thus effectively concealed the information that Singaporeans’ CPF monies are being invested in the three agencies, from Singaporeans themselves.
I was shocked to find out that the PAP had altered the information.
But even though the PAP tried to hide, they could not hide for too long.
After I was sued, the PAP finally admitted that they have been taking our CPF to invest in the GIC, for the first time in the past 15 to 20 years.
There was no where to run.
Singaporeans finally know the truth:
However, Temasek Holdings continued to deny that it has taken Singaporeans’ CPF to invest.
(Interestingly, The Straits Times article has now been removed.)
Temasek Holdings also has the audacity to say: “Temasek does not manage CPF savings (which are managed by the Board of the Central Provident Fund), Government surpluses, or Singapore’s Official Foreign Reserves (which are managed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore).”
But I found out that the Temasek Holdings did.
In a book written by Linda Low who used to work in the Ministry of Finance, she said: “since the late 1970s, CPF’s reserves as part of public sector surplus have been co-mingled with other investments either domestically by Temasek Holding Ltd or abroad by the GIC”.
Last year, at the Forum on CPF and Retirement Adequacy organised by the Institute of Policy Studies, I asked Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam: “Temasek Holdings has said that they do not invest our CPF, is it possible to know if in the past Temasek Holdings had invested our CPF? Because the GIC was only set up in 1981, so prior to 1981, how was the CPF used and otherwise was it invested in Temasek Holdings?”
Mr Tharman said: “Temasek started off with a set of assets which were transferred by the Government at the time of inception … about $400 million worth of assets in the form of a set of companies.”
(The Channel NewsAsia article of the transcript of this exchange has also been removed.)
However, in 1982, Ong Teng Cheong revealed that these companies were built using our CPF.
He said: “CPF savings … are used for capital formation which means the construction of new factories, installation of new plant and equipment, expansion of infrastructure such as roads, ports and telecommunications, the building of houses and so on.”
Which means that “CPF savings” were used for the “capital formation” of these “companies” which were “transferred” to Temasek Holdings.
So Temasek Holdings did use our CPF:
Also, it was revealed in the book, “Reforming Corporate Governance in Southeast Asia”, that, “Temasek Holdings has acknowledged that it can access the reserves” because “In April 2004, a constitutional amendment that allowed the government to transfer reserves to key statutory boards and companies, and the transfer of reserves among them with the approval of the president, was introduced.”
The reserves also come from government bonds, which come from Singaporeans’ CPF.
Which means Temasek Holdings still has access to Singaporeans’ CPF.
So, Temasek Holdings has been taking our CPF to invest as well. But they denied it.
Worse still, Temasek Holdings says: “As an exempt private company, Temasek is not required to disclose financial information.”
This is even though Temasek Holdings said that it “recognise(s) that the ultimate shareholders of Temasek are the past, present and future generations of Singapore.”
If so, why does it not it disclose its financial information to Singaporeans?
Why does Temasek Holdings hide that it has taken Singaporeans’ CPF to use? Why does Temasek Holdings hide how it manages Singaporeans’ money from Singaporeans?
Yet, the PAP tried to make it look like it is not linked to the GIC.
The PAP claims that it “plays no role in decisions on individual investments that are made by GIC.”
The GIC also says that, “The Government … neither directs nor interferes in the company’s investment decisions.”
However, this is the GIC’s board of directors.
This (was) the government.
Yes, the GIC’s board of directors is also made up of the government, namely the prime minister, the two deputy prime ministers, several ministers and ex-ministers.
Then, can it be possible that, “The Government … neither directs nor interferes in the company’s investment decisions”?
Also, can it be possible that, “The Government plays no role in decisions on individual investments that are made by GIC.”?
But not only that, the GIC also kept changing its information after being found out.
Today, the GIC also said that, “It receives funds from the government … without regard to the sources, e.g. proceeds from securities issued, government surpluses.”
But this is untrue. The GIC used to know.
The GIC used to say: “The Government’s financial assets … are mainly managed by the GIC.”
It also said that there are two “fundamental sources of the Singapore Government’s funds” – “Sustained balance of payments surpluses and accumulated national savings”.
The “national savings” include Singaporeans’ CPF.
Yes, not only has the PAP been changing the information on the government websites, the GIC has also altered information on their websites.
So the GIC knows that it is using Singaporeans’ CPF.
Indeed, it was later found out that the GIC knows that it is using Singaporeans’ CPF. Then the GIC changed its information yet again.
In the past the GIC said: “GIC manages the Government’s reserves, but as to how the funds from CPF monies flow into reserves which could then be managed by either MAS, GIC or Temasek, this is not made explicit to us.”
However, by the end of June 2014, the GIC changed it to: “GIC, along with MAS, manages the proceeds from the Special Singapore Government Securities (SSGS) that are issued and guaranteed by the government which CPF board has invested in with the CPF monies. So while the CPF monies are not directly transferred to GIC for management, one of the sources of funds that goes into the Government’s assets managed by GIC is the proceeds from SSGS.”
The GIC tried to change the information to look like it knows that it is using Singaporeans’ CPF, without actually knowing.
Do you buy this?
The fact of the matter is that the PAP knows that it has taken all of our CPF to invest in the GIC.
Then why does the PAP keep pretending that it does not know?
The PAP says: “GIC is a fund manager, not an owner of the assets. It merely receives funds from Government for long-term management, without regard to the sources of Government funds, e.g. SGS, SSGS, government surpluses. The Government’s mandate to GIC is to manage the assets in a single pool, on an unencumbered basis, with the aim of achieving good long-term returns. The Government does not specify to GIC the sources of the assets that are placed with it.”
But the truth?
The was what the PAP said: “CPF monies are invested by the CPF Board (CPFB) in Special Singapore Government Securities (SSGS).”
It then said: “However, as a major portion of these assets are of a long-term nature, such as those that provide backing for long-term Government liabilities like SSGS, such assets are transferred to GIC to be managed over a long investment horizon.“
(After I wrote an article about this, the PAP changed this information yet again.)
This means that all our CPF is invested in the GIC.
Then why does the PAP still keep denying that all our CPF is invested in the GIC?
Moreever, if the GIC’s board of directors is also made up of the prime minister, the two deputy prime ministers, several ministers and ex-ministers, can it be possible that the GIC can say that it does not know if it is using Singaporeans’ CPF to invest?
Also, how can the GIC not know if it is using Singaporeans’ CPF to invest when a previous member of the CPF Investment Committee was also president of GIC Asset Management?
Not only that, the current President who is supposed supposed to look after our reserves was once on the GIC’s board of directors. If so, isn’t there a conflict of interest?
In fact, President Ong Teng Cheong said: “When I came in in 1993, I asked for all this information about the reserves. It took them three years to give it to me.”
He also said: “they said it would take 56-man years to produce a dollar-and-cents value of the immovable assets… we came to a compromise. The government would not need to give me the dollar-and-cents value, just give me a listing of all the properties that the government owns. It took them a few months to produce the list. But even when they gave me the list, it was not complete.”
The PAP would not even tell the President what it was doing with Singaporeans’ CPF, when the President is supposed to look after our reserves, and our CPF.
Singaporeans, we have been treated as fools.
All these started in 1981. In 1981, the PAP set up the GIC and brought Rothschild in to advise on the GIC.
In 1982, the PAP changed its party constitution to remove the objective of “abolishing wealth inequalities” and replaced it with asking Singaporeans to be self-reliant.
From then on, the PAP started creating policies to lock up more and more of our CPF from the 1980s – CPF Minimum Sum, Medisave, MediShield, CPF interest rates were reduced from 1986, and HDB flat prices and university tuition fees were suddenly increased by several times from 1987.
GIC was also set up under mysterious circumstances. Lee Kuan Yew asked Goh Keng Swee to become the chairman of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). Goh Keng Swee then brought in officials from the Ministry of Defence to review the MAS. They produced “a critical report accusing the MAS of inefficiency and poor management of the country’s reserves“. Several people from MAS were kicked out or resigned. Goh Keng Swee then set up GIC. Several people who left MAS then suddenly joined the GIC.
Lee Kuan Yew and Goh Keng Swee then got Rothschild in to advise on the GIC.
The PAP Old Guards were then kicked out of government by the late-1980s.
Income inequality started to worsen from the 1990s. The PAP increased its own salaries to millions of dollars in 1984 and the wages of Singaporeans became depressed since then, for the past 20 years now.
Today, we are finally seeing the effects. It all started in 1981. The PAP has been hurting Singaporeans for more than 30 years now.
It is still not too late to change things and turn things around.
It is time for change. It is time to protect your future and your children.
Vote for a new government that will finally implement policies to protect Singaporeans.
Before it is too late.