Unversity education in Singapore has become more unaffordable relative to household income, a new article by CNBC has revealed. While median income has grown by 10% since 2007, tuition fees were up by 38%.

In 2007, tuition fees for a general arts degree cost between S$6,000 to S$7,000 a year when it has skyrocketed by as much as 51% to between S$8,000 and S$11,000 now. The jump for a law degree at NUS increased even more, with costs rocketing from S$6,100 in 2009 to more than double at S$12,400.

The pressure for children to get good grades can clearly be seen in an Asian culture. In 2014, a Household Expenditure Survey by the government showed that Singaporean families spent more than S$1 billion on university tuition in 2014, a large jump from S$650 million a decade earlier.

Nevertheless, the government has continued to lavish scholarships generously to foreign students – a recent estimate has shown that the government has failed to stick to its plan to cap the number of international students at 18% as promised.

At the same time, an AGO report has raised control deficiencies in foreign scholars defaulting on their bonds. To add insult to the injury, Minister Khaw had previously told Singaporeans that it was not necessary to get a degree for the sake of getting one.

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