Singapore’s economy shrank at a slower pace in the third quarter as COVID-19 restrictions were eased, official data showed yesterday, but the city-state still faces a long road to recovery.
The financial hub plunged into its first recession since the 2008 global financial crisis in the second quarter, when the government closed businesses as part of drastic measures to contain infections.
“The worst is over for Singapore, but the path to recovery is still a bit bumpy,” CIMB Private Banking regional economist Song Seng Wun (宋城煥) said.
Third-quarter GDP shrank 7 percent year-on-year, according to preliminary data released by the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
While a heavy fall, it was better than the record 13.3 percent drop registered in April to June, with many businesses having reopened as Singapore’s outbreak slows.
Compared with the previous quarter, the economy grew 7.9 percent, rebounding from a 13.2 percent drop, the ministry said.
Manufacturing, which includes key semiconductor exports, was up 2 percent, a turnaround from negative growth in the second quarter.
The services sector also shrank at a slower pace, although it was still weighed down by the anemic performance of the key tourism sector as global air travel remains largely grounded.
Construction was down 44.7 percent, but that was better than the previous quarter’s nearly 60 percent plunge.
Singapore’s central bank yesterday also kept monetary policy unchanged, saying an “accommodative policy stance” was appropriate as the economy recovers.
Singapore’s trade-reliant economy is typically hit first by external shocks before ripples spread across the region. However, it usually also recovers quickly from any downturn.
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