Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said the President-elect Barack Obama win in Tuesday's elections did not mean race was no longer an issue in the United States, dpa reported.
"People were tired, they wanted something different, and Mr Obama represented something different," the Sunday Times quoted Lee as saying.
Obama's victory marked a "historic change" for America, he said during a community dialogue on Saturday.
Lee pointed out that after 20 years of George Bush and Bill Clinton presidencies, Americans wanted a change.
"He (Obama) was an effective candidate, charismatic candidate and able to mobilize young people and enthuse them, inspire them," said Lee.
Obama won 52 per cent of the popular vote against opponent John McCain's 46 per cent, but a closer look at how ethnic groups voted showed that race remained a factor, said Lee, responding to a question on whether pre-dominantly Chinese Singapore will have a non-Chinese Prime Minister from the minority groups.
He noted that just 43 per cent of whites voted for Obama, compared to 60 per cent to 65 per cent of Latinos and Asians and 95 per cent of Blacks.
(In Washington, analysts say that Obama's loss among whites has been typical for Democrats over past elections. Former president Bill Clinton received only 39 per cent of the white vote in 1992 and 43 per cent in 1996, according to New York times exit polls.)
The Singapore Premier, however, in discussing the results of Obama's victory, added: "To say that's socio-economic, nothing to do with race, I don't think so," the Singapore Premier pointed out.
"The factor is still there, but there are other factors which are important and in this case they all added up, enough for Mr Obama to score a good majority and become president," said Lee.
On a non-Chinese Prime Minister for Singapore, Lee said though it is possible, it will not happen soon.
Winning votes was the issue, said Lee, acknowledging that Singaporeans' attitudes towards race have shifted in the last two to three decades.
A survey of 1,824 Singaporeans, carried out by a local institution last year, found that 94 per cent of Chinese polled said they would not mind an Indian as Prime Minister and 91 per cent would not mind a Malay in the top post.
Singapore's population currently has 74.7 per cent Chinese, 14 per cent Malays and 8.9 per cent Indians.