Speaking at the appreciation dinner for this year’s National Day Parade (NDP) participants, Defence Minister complained that it is too expensive to hold more NDP celebrations at the new National Stadium and next year, the event will be held at the floating platform.
This is the first time Singapore held its NDP celebration at the newly-constructed stadium that cost S$1.3 billion to build. Every year, Singapore conducted its NDP celebration at the National Stadium without fail since independence. The Marina Bay floating platform was actually meant to be a temporary solution while the old National Stadium was under a 10 year construction, and not intended for permanent use.
The current National Stadium, now known as the Sports Hub, is owned by a private company and it charges S$39.4 million alone in rental for the NDP celebrations this year (2016). Last year, it cost S$40.5 million, and the figures are unlikely to come down in the near future. There is no explanation why the country’s national stadium is not nationalised and state-owned.
Conducting the NDP celebration at the floating platform cost less than half the price at the Sports Hub, at between S$15.7 million and S$17.9 million. There is no explanation why tax dollars were paid to build the Sports Hub, yet Singaporeans still have to pay rental for the venue.