Singapore officially the Republic of Singapore, sometimes referred to as the Lion City or the Little Red Dot, is a sovereign city-state in Southeast Asia. It lies one degree (137 km) north of the equator, at the southern tip of peninsular Malaysia, with Indonesia's Riau Islands to the south. Singapore's territory consists of one main island along with 62 other islets. Since independence, extensive land reclamation has increased its total size by 23% (130 km2), and its greening policy has covered the densely populated island with tropical flora, parks and gardens.
Singapore is a global commerce, finance and transport hub. Its standings include: the most "technology-ready" nation (WEF), top International-meetings city (UIA), city with "best investment potential" (BERI), second-most competitive country, third-largest foreign exchange market, third-largest financial centre, third-largest oil refining and trading centre, and the second-busiest container port. The country has also been identified as a tax haven.
Singapore ranks 5th internationally and first in Asia on the UN Human Development Index, and 3rd highest per capita income. It is ranked highly in education, healthcare, life expectancy, quality of life, personal safety, and housing, but does not fare well on the Democracy index. Although income inequality is high, 90% of homes are owner-occupied. 38% of Singapore's 5.6 million residents are permanent residents and other foreign nationals. There are four official languages on the island: Malay, Mandarin, Tamil and English. English is its common language; most Singaporeans are bilingual.