Singapore’s economic growth is set to dip to “close to 2 percent” this year after the city-state avoided a technical recession, the government said yesterday, with a potential further slowdown seen for next year.
The decline from a growth rate of 2.9 percent last year reflects the impact on Asia of slowing demand for its exports from major world economies including the US, China and Europe.
Next year, trade-dependent Singapore’s GDP is expected to grow between 1 and 3 percent.
The latest forecast by the Singaporean Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) is on the lower end of an earlier projection for growth of between 2 percent and 2.5 percent.
“Global economic conditions have remained sluggish, with full-year growth for 2015 likely to come in weaker than in 2014,” the ministry said in a statement.
It said growth was weighed down primarily by the weak performance of the manufacturing sector, which covers such big-ticket items as semiconductors, pharmaceuticals and oil rigs.
GDP for the third quarter ended September was up 1.9 percent year-on-year. It was also up 1.9 percent quarter-on-quarter, reversing a contraction in the previous three months and allowing the economy to escape a technical recession.
“For the rest of the year, Singapore’s GDP growth is expected to remain resilient amidst a challenging external environment,” the ministry said.
While manufacturing and other sectors linked to external demand are expected to be under pressure, industries dependent on domestic factors should be firmer, it said.
“Taking these factors into consideration, MTI expects the Singapore economy to grow by close to 2 percent for the whole of 2015,” it said.
One of the downside risks for next year is if China’s economic rebalancing falters. This could shake the country’s financial system and lead to a sharp fall in economic growth, it said.
“With low commodity prices, the anticipated normalization of US monetary conditions and volatility in the Chinese stock market, regional countries could face sudden and large capital outflows, resulting in added pressures on their currencies and asset markets,” it added.
Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) yesterday launched its first electric bicycle, the Gogoro Eeyo 1, in Taiwan, after unveiling the bike in New York in late May and in France on Tuesday. The company said it would also introduce the series in other European countries such as Germany and the Netherlands. The “Eeyo project” is the fourth of Gogoro’s eight projects that concentrate on smart transportation, which includes Gogoro’s electric scooter, battery swap system and electric scooter sharing service, company founder and chief executive officer Horace Luke (陸學森) told a media briefing in Taipei. “There are various types of city commuters. We will not
With the US dollar expected to weaken in the next 12 months due to near-zero interest rates, investors should consider purchasing US corporate bonds, Standard Chartered Bank Taiwan Ltd (渣打台灣銀行) said on Thursday. The bank said that the US Federal Reserve since last month has been buying bonds issued by US companies to curb default rates. The US dollar is forecast to be weaker against the pound, the euro and the yen, as well as the Canadian dollar, the Swedish krona and the Swiss franc, as the greenback lacks high investment returns after the Fed in March slashed the benchmark interest rate
BAD RAP: The exchange said Tatung had seriously breached shareholders’ rights and failed to give a satisfactory explanation of its board election dispute Tatung Co (大同) shares yesterday plunged by the maximum daily limit of 10 percent to NT$18.90, the lowest in three months, after the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TWSE) on Tuesday evening changed the company’s classification to a full-delivery stock effective tomorrow. The TWSE’s move follows the company’s failure to give a clear and satisfactory explanation of why it deprived dozens of shareholders of their voting rights during a board election at the annual shareholders’ meeting on Tuesday morning. Under the exchange’s regulations, investors are not allowed to engage in margin trading of a full-delivery stock, TWSE spokeswoman Rebecca Chen (陳麗卿) told
SIZE MATTERS: Medium-sized hotels that do not have the support of parent groups are more vulnerable and are forced to take action, a REPro Knight Frank researcher said About 50 hotels across Taiwan are seeking to exit the market as they succumb to the bleak business outlook amid international travel restrictions imposed to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Yomi Hotel (優美飯店) on Minsheng E Road, Sec 1, in Taipei is seeking to transfer ownership with an asking price of NT$950 million (US$32.15 million) and a pledge for a lease contract that guarantees a 3 percent return. The budget hotel, with room rates that start from NT$1,400 per night, maintains normal operations, but has been struggling since March, when the government placed restrictions on inbound and outbound travel. Occupancy rates for hotels in