S’pore: More than 2pc growth pos­si­ble

New Straits Times - - Business -

SIN­GA­PORE: Sin­ga­pore ex­pects its econ­omy to grow more than two per cent this year on im­prov­ing over­seas de­mand af­ter gross do­mes­tic prod­uct (GDP) con­tracted less than ini­tially es­ti­mated in the first quar­ter, but it warned of risks to the out­look from tight­en­ing fi­nan­cial con­di­tions in China.

The city state has been among a number of ex­port-re­liant Asian economies to ben­e­fit from a gen­eral uptick in global de­mand from late last year, en­joy­ing strong sales of its tech prod­ucts.

The pos­i­tive mo­men­tum saw its econ­omy avoid a deeper slump in the first quar­ter, shrink­ing 1.3 per cent from the pre­vi­ous three months on an an­nu­alised and sea­son­ally ad­justed ba­sis, com­pared with the gov­ern­ment's ini­tial es­ti­mate in April of a 1.9 per cent con­trac­tion.

The data re­leased by the Trade and In­dus­try Min­istry yes­ter­day was slightly worse than the me­dian fore­cast in a Reuters sur­vey of a one per cent slump.

The min­istry kept its GDP fore­cast for the year un­changed at one to three per cent this year, but said that growth was likely to come in higher than two per cent “bar­ring the ma­te­ri­al­i­sa­tion of down­side risks”, and sup­ported by an im­prov­ing out­look for ad­vanced economies.

The gov­ern­ment re­vised its ex­port fore­casts for the year to four to six per cent growth from zero to two per cent pre­vi­ously. In the first quar­ter, the man­u­fac­tur­ing sec­tor grew eight per cent yearon-year af­ter a 11.5 per cent ex­pan­sion in the pre­vi­ous quar­ter.

De­spite the up­beat tone, how­ever, the gov­ern­ment warned of risks to the growth out­look from tight­en­ing fi­nan­cial con­di­tions in China and pol­icy un­cer­tain­ties in the United States and Bri­tain. Reuters

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