Singapore economy beats estimates as government warns of risks

In Q1, Singapore experienced a 0.4% growth in its economy despite its government’s cautionary statements on the global economic outlook.

While this figure surpassed expectations, it fell short of the previous quarter’s 2.1% growth. The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) cautioned about the emergence of “downside risks” such as the increase in interest rates and the escalation of the war in Ukraine.

Nevertheless, MTI retained its growth forecast for 2023 at between 0.5% and 2.5%.

The trade ministry permanent secretary, Gabriel Lim, stated in a news conference that Singapore’s external demand for the rest of the year has weakened.

As a major financial hub that is largely reliant on trade, Singapore is often perceived as a gauge of the global economy due to its exposure to global conditions.

The ministry projected that this year’s growth would probably fall in the middle of its estimated range.

“Singapore’s external demand outlook for the rest of the year has weakened,” Lim told a news conference.

“Apart from the expected slowdown in the advanced economies, the electronics downcycle is likely to be deeper and more prolonged than earlier projected.”

Singapore’s economy grew 3.8 percent in 2022, down from 7.6 percent the year before, as the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions and border controls helped buoy economic activity.

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