America is a great nation, not just because of your power and your wealth, but because of your high ideals, openness, and generosity of spirit.

We are looking for ways where you can have a sandbox, where you have a restricted environment within which people can try new things, and I can try new rules. And depending on what works, then I open up the sandbox, and it becomes the new rule for the whole system.

Criticism, any amount, we welcome it. Come, let's have a discussion - in Parliament, all the better.

You will always have politics being pushed towards multiracial politics because you have to field a team.

If you interview world leaders, everybody will say they are for free trade. But what they mean by it and what they do when they say they are pro free trade, you have to watch and see.

I think we are paying a lot of attention to China one way or the other. They are a big factor in the world. They are successful; they are growing. They want to grow their influence, and all the countries in Asia want to be their friend and want to benefit from China's development and success.

We do have to watch to see how the foreign workers and immigrants are fitting in with our community, and you have to watch them mix so that you don't overbalance the numbers or the tone of our society.

You need to have good people: honourable, capable, committed in politics, standing in public office. It's not a guarantee, but it's the ideal we have to aim for.

When people say they don't want a nanny state, they are, in fact, in a conflicted state of mind. On the one hand, they want to do whatever they want and not be stopped. On the other hand, if something goes wrong, they want to be rescued.

Nowadays, however strong an economy is, not all roads will lead only there. There will be other links between countries in Asia, with America, with Europe, and China will fit into this global network.

What we can do in Singapore may not be doable elsewhere. Some things you know you need: you want efficient government, you want clean government, you want to do away with corruption, you must educate your people. You want to get housing and so on. All these are not such secrets, not so special to Singapore.

At some point, there will be some other financial crisis. It's in the nature of a capitalist system.

The world is a diverse place. Nobody has a monopoly on virtue or wisdom.

America excels not just through sheer individual talent but by working together with others.

China is developing very quickly. At every stage, its needs are different.

In our society, which is multiracial and multi-religious, giving offence to another religious or ethnic group, race, language, or religion is always a very serious matter.

Everybody has his place; everybody is equal. Treated equally, equal standing, equal rights and status.

Chinese companies - telecommunications and technology companies - are some of the best internationally. Taobao, WeChat, Huawei - not only are they large companies, but they're also very technologically advanced.

If you go overseas and meet people, you can detect a Singaporean from across the street - the way he dresses, slightly; the way he talks; the way he acts. There is a persona which is recognizable and which we are proud of.

I would not say that the North Koreans will do anything that the Chinese want them to do.

The old model for India was to be self-sufficient. It was the ideal India became independent with, that you spin your own thread, make your own clothes.

To represent the nation, you must have multiracial representation.

It takes time, but I have a promising team of younger Ministers, and I am quite sure from amongst them, one leader will emerge.

We have long depended on an America which has got a clear sense of its stakes in the world and how much it depends on the world as well as how much the world and its allies and friends depend on the United States of America, and we hope this will continue.

We know India is very focussed on black money; it is a very high-focus subject and we have been very careful to make sure the investments into India are legitimate. There is no 'round-tripping' or hot money or bad money being funnelled through Singapore.

No government prospers by saying, 'I don't need to do anything. Just by being there, we have made the country thrive.'

Just as our forefathers saved and invested to build what we, the current generation, are enjoying today, so, too, we must plant trees so that our sons and daughters, and their sons and daughters, can enjoy the shade.

The key thing in Northeast Asia is North Korea. They are unpredictable; they are developing their nuclear capabilities and their missiles.

Overall, we think religion is a good thing. I mean, if we were godless society, we would have many other problems; the communists found that out.

The tactics we were able to use in the 1960s, 1970s - let's have a campaign, mobilize everybody and, therefore, social pressure - stop littering, or stop spitting, or be courteous to one another: I am not sure that kind of approach will work anymore.

The natural result of people preferring one of their own race is that a minority race president will find it hard to get elected, and so it's something we should do something about and which we can do something about.

In every American election, crazy things are said. Positions are taken which the winners try very hard to forget afterwards.

We are open to the world; the world is at our doorstep. It washes in, not just through the windows, but we are immersed in it completely - through the Internet, through the media, through people traveling, coming here, as well as Singaporeans going abroad.

The Chinese go around with lollipops in their pockets. They have aid. They have friendship deals. They build you a Prime Minister's office or President's office or Parliament House or Foreign Ministry. For them, trade is an extension of their foreign policy.

We are happy to see China prospering; we are happy to see China playing a constructive and positive role in the region.

I think if you look at the Singapore projects, we wanted to do industrial parks. They have taken very long to clear the issues of land, and these become politicised, and you can't settle it, and eventually the project languishes and nothing happens.

If we have no foreign workers, our economy suffers; our own lives suffer.

You have to have a sense of what it looks like, not from the point of view of the policymaker but from the point of view of those who are at the receiving end of your policies.

You look at the Americans. They don't lack fervour in moral causes. They promote democracy, freedom of speech, women's rights, gay rights, sometimes even transgender rights. But you don't see them applying that universally across the world with all their allies.

We are not in a situation where the minorities are demanding something and the majorities are pushing back saying 'We don't want it.'

It has to be good to live in Singapore because otherwise, nobody will stand for it.

No country can be an island unto itself or world unto itself. Not even the biggest country.

One of the reasons America is welcome in Asia is because with America... there is a certain idealism and a certain bigness of soul. You want the region to prosper; you want countries to do well, and you are prepared to help them.

I hope that soon after the next election, amongst them they will have decided, settled, and the leader will be ready to take over from me.

The Chinese are quite clear what their interests are and very consistent on pushing their interests.

If there are tensions between America and China, we will be asked to pick a side. It may not be directly, but you will get the message that, 'We would like you to be with us, and are you with us? If not, does that mean you're against us?' And that's to put it gently.

If you make a defamatory allegation that the Prime Minister is guilty of criminal misappropriation of pension funds of Singaporeans, that's a very serious matter.

You have an administration which understands America's international responsibilities and interests, but you have a population which is anxious, tired, and doesn't want to bear any burden and pay any price. And that's very difficult for whoever becomes president.

I don't have farmers I can convert into factory workers.