Tourism is an
important economic pillar for Singapore. As the lead agency for Singapore
tourism, STB strives to ensure sector excellence through long-term strategic
planning, by forging partnerships, and driving innovation. It continues to
market Singapore’s multi-faceted appeal as a premier business and leisure
destination, and offer empowering and customised experiences through the “Your
Singapore” destination brand.
STB also regularly
reviews and updates the tourism regulatory framework to ensure its relevance in
the current business environment, while providing support and incentives to
catalyse the private sector to take the lead in investing for growth.
To navigate the
tourism sector through an increasingly complex tourism landscape, STB is
pursuing Quality Tourism – a model of tourism development that emphasises
economic contribution, innovative and competitive industry and an engaged local
populace, it calls for four pathways to success:
The choice of the Merlion as a symbol for
Singapore has its roots in history. The Merlion commemorates the ancient name
and the legend taken from the "Malay Annals" (literary and historical
work from the 15th or 16th century) explaining how Singapore received its
In ancient times, Singapore was known as Temasek which is Javanese for the sea.
It was then, as it is today, a centre of trade.
At the end of the 4th century A.D, Temasek was destroyed by the Siamese,
according to some historians, but by the Javanese according to others. As
recorded in the legend in the "Malay Annals," Prince Nila Utama of
the Sri Vijaya empire rediscovered the island later in the 11th century A.D. On
seeing a strange beast (which he later learnt was a lion) upon his landing, he
named the island Singapura which is a Sanskrit word for Lion (Singa) City (Pura).
The Merlion, with its fish-like body riding the waves of the sea, is symbolic
of the ancient city of Temasek. At the same time, its majestic head recalls the
legend of the discovery of Singapore by Prince Nila Utama in the 11th century,
when Singapore received its present name.
The Merlion, a symbol to welcome all visitors to Singapore, has since moved. On
15 September 2002, it settled into its new home at Merlion Park, located next
to One Fullerton, overlooking scenic Marina Bay, with the park opened by Singapore’s
Founding Father Mr Lee Kuan Yew.
Tourism Board (STB) is the country’s leading economic development agency for
tourism, one of Singapore's key service sectors.
Our Vision: A vibrant and inspiring Destination
Singapore that we are proud of.
To shape a dynamic tourism landscape for
Singapore in partnership with industry and community.
The Business Improvement Fund (BIF) aims to
encourage technology innovation and adoption, redesign of business model and
processes in the tourism sector to improve productivity, competitiveness and the
delivery of an enhanced consumer experience.
The enhanced Business Improvement Fund
launched in 2015 includes another component – the BIF Plus which provides
funding support to hotels and technology developers for a year.
Find out more about BIF.
Find out more about BIF