Singapore’s GDP contracts by 5.8 per cent in 2020

SINGAPORE (XINHUA) – Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry announced yesterday based on advance estimates, the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) for the whole of 2020 fell by 5.8 per cent year on year, compared to the 0.7 per cent growth in 2019.

For the fourth quarter of 2020, Singapore’s economy contracted by 3.8 per cent year on year, an improvement from the 5.6 per cent contraction recorded in the third quarter.

On a quarter-on-quarter seasonally adjusted basis, the economy grew by 2.1 per cent, following the 9.5 per cent expansion in the third quarter.

In a breakdown, Singapore’s manufacturing sector expanded by 7.1 per cent in 2020. It expanded by 9.5 per cent year on year but contracted by 2.6 per cent quarter on quarter in the fourth quarter.

The ministry attributes the sector’s year-on-year growth to output expansions in the electronics, biomedical manufacturing and precision engineering clusters, which outweighed output declines in the transport engineering and general manufacturing clusters.

The construction sector contracted by 33.7 per cent in 2020. It contracted by 28.5 per cent year on year but expanded by 34.4 per cent quarter on quarter in the fourth quarter of last year.

A cyclist takes a photo with his mobile phone in front of the Merlion statue in Singapore. PHOTO: AFP

Meanwhile, Singapore’s services producing industries contracted by 7.8 per cent in 2020.

For the fourth quarter, the services producing industries shrank by 6.8 per cent year on year but grew 2.4 per cent quarter on quarter.

The advanced GDP estimate figure released yesterday were computed largely from data in the first two months of the fourth quarter of 2020, according to the ministry.

These figures are intended as an early indication of the GDP growth in the quarter, and are subject to revision when more comprehensive data become available.

The ministry said it will release the preliminary GDP estimates for the fourth quarter and the whole of 2020 this February.