[About this blog] Inspired by local soccer player Mike Lim during my rookie reporter days at Singapore Polytechnic, I set up this blog in August 2002. I feel that blogging is a novel platform to document interesting facets of my life and my thoughts on certain issues. [Email blogger] ephraim@singnet.com.sg

Monday, July 23, 2007

[Meeting the Party Secretary of Shantou]
1. I was delighted to meet the present Party Secretary of Shantou Mr Huang Zhiguang this morning. He is visiting Singapore as the guest of the Singapore Teochew Poit Ip Huay Kuan. He gave me a good briefing on the developments in Shantou. After quite a few years in the doldrums following Beijing's clampdown on smuggling, the local economy is booming again. The growth rate last year was 11.6%. The growth this year is expected to exceed 12%.

2. Among the major projects underway is a major bridge to the island of Nan'ao, which is also a county. I visited Nan'ao many years ago especially the Song Jing, a well by the sea which was a source of sweet water. During the last days of the Southern Song Dynasty, the boy emperor, who was the last in the dynasty, took refuge there for a few months. Later in a great sea battle near Hongkong, the Mongol Yuan forces defeated the Song and, rather than having the emperor taken a prisoner, an official carried the boy and jumped into the water. Nan'ao is a beautiful island rich in seafood. Secretary Huang promised me to take me there once the bridge is built. About a hundred years ago, when Nan'ao was split between Guangdong and Fujian Provinces, a massive earthquake occured. Some of the people there migrated to Taiwan, then a Japanese colony, where their descendants still live near Hengchun.

3. Recently, a Ming Dynasty ship wreck was discovered near Nan'ao with some 70,000 pieces of pottery. CCTV will be covering the lifting of the ship from the sea in September which promises to be an exciting event. Secretary Huang will send me a video recording of the salvage operation. I have not visited Shantou for a few years now and look forward to going again.

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG


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