The Brenthurst Foundation
Strengthening Africa's
economic performance

Why Singapore Works, Taking The Right Lessons

Olusegun Obasanjo

Former President, Republic of Nigeria; Chairman, The Brenthurst Foundation

Greg Mills

Director, The Brenthurst Foundation

Book / Publication · Published 28 June 2017



Following our recent publication tracing the role of Singapore’s defence forces in the rapid development of the once-impoverished South East Asian city-state, this Discussion Paper ‘Why Singapore Works: Taking the Right Lessons’ seeks to dispel some of the common myths associated with Singapore’s remarkable success.

In the African context, the Singapore ‘story’ has become enmeshed in fervent debates about colonialism and the apparent virtues of authoritarian leadership. The co-authors of this Discussion Paper, the Foundation’s chairman former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo and director Greg Mills, assert that it is as wrong to extol the virtues of colonialism as it is to promote the benefits of authoritarianism.

African leaders, they argue, have paid insufficient attention to the fundamentals of Singapore’s success – from its relentless focus on building institutions to its innovative trade and investment policies – which could be effectively applied to their own countries.



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