It was reported in the media that Singapore PR, Dr Tahir, has donated $500,000 to help needy individuals and families who are affected by COVID-19 in Singapore.
Dr Tahir, 68, is an Indonesian businessman who is the founder of the Mayapada Group, one of Indonesia’s biggest conglomerates with businesses in financial services, healthcare and real estate.
He will donate the monies to SPH’s Chinese Media Group, which will work with community development councils here to identify needy families affected by COVID-19.
Dr Tahir himself has been serving a 14-day quarantine at his house in Sentosa Cove. He was in Indonesia last month to attend a wake before returning back to Singapore. His quarantine will end this week.
During an online interview, he said, “Newspapers are the most important food for me, which have inspired me. In Singapore, the weaker groups need help. And I thought, since I’m doing okay, why not use this opportunity to contribute a little bit?”
“The Singapore Government has done well, and done so much. But I’ve had a strange observation – I don’t see Singaporean businessmen or tycoons responding, at least not yet.”
“So I hope that a small donation from a Singapore PR will encourage them to also participate.”
“(Fighting the coronavirus) is a combined government and public job. Everyone has an obligation and responsibility to participate.”
He has also made donations to Indonesia and China to fight the coronavirus. In Indonesia, he donated S$4.6 million to help taxi drivers and mosques. And in China, he has sent equipment to cities in Fujian province, as well as Beijing.
“This morning, I also told my daughter, in all our buildings in Jakarta, we will offer 1,000 free meal boxes every day from Monday to Friday for three months. Anybody can take it. We are also giving business to micro-businesses as well, to provide the meal boxes.”
“But this is not a time where you calculate how much money you donate. The fight with the coronavirus is like another world war. You fight, but you can’t see where the enemy is.”
“This is the time for us to give back, even if it’s just a little bit.”
Singaporean Li Xiting’s net worth increases by S$5 billion, thanks to COVID-19
Speaking of Singaporean tycoons, it was reported that new citizen Li Xiting’s net worth has increased by some S$5 billion from the huge price increase of his company’s shares. Li is the Chairman of Shenzhen Mindray Bio-Medical Electronics Co.
Driven by a spike in demand for ventilators in the outbreak, the shares of Li’s company have risen 40 per cent. There has been a flood of patients brought by the pandemic and many are struggling to breathe.
The net worth of Li, now a Singapore citizen, has increased USD$3.5 billion (S$5 billion) in 2020 with a USD$12.5 billion (S$17.93 billion) wealth as of end of Thursday (2 Apr), based on Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index. Thus, this registers him as the top fiver gainers worldwide (‘S’pore’s richest man Li Xiting gains almost S$5 billion on ventilators demand boom amid pandemic‘).
There is a worldwide shortage of ventilators amid the global health crisis. Ventilators are vital for treating the critically sick COVID-19 patients and keeping them alive. According to Mindray’s Board Secretary, Li Wenmei, current global demand for ventilators is at least 10 times what the manufacturers can supply.
It’s not known if Li, holder of a red passport, has donated anything to Singapore to help the country fights COVID-19.