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Manufacturing only sector to shrink, at 6.2%, expected to remain weak in 2016

Wednesday, November 25, 2015 - 08:03

SINGAPORE'S manufacturing sector was the only sector that posted a contraction in the third quarter of this year, at 6.2 per cent year-on-year, while the wholesale and retail trade sector posted the strongest showing at 6.8 per cent year-on-year.

Contraction in the manufacturing sector extended last quarter's 4.8 per cent decline, and is expected to remain weak next year, said the Ministry of Trade and Industry in a report published on Wednesday morning.

The sector's contraction was primarily due to a fall in the output of the transport engineering, electronics and precision engineering clusters.

Growth in the wholesale and retail trade sector was primarily driven by the wholesale sector, helping it grow at a faster pace than last quarter's 6 per cent.

The construction sector grew 1.6 per cent year-on-year, from 2.2 per cent in the previous quarter as public sector activity slowed down.

Stronger showing by the air and land transport segments helped the transportation and storage sector grow 0.3 per cent year-on- year, compared to the 1.0 per cent contraction in the second quarter.

The information and communications sector grew by 4.8 per cent year-on-year, slower than the 5.6 per cent growth in the preceding quarter.

Fund management, insurance and related services led growth in the finance & insurance sector to 4.8 per cent year-on-year, from 6.9 per cent in the second quarter.

The accommodation and food services sector grew by 0.9 per cent year-on-year, an improvement from the 0.9 per cent decline in the preceding quarter.

The business services sector expanded by 1.5 per cent year-on-year, similar to the 1.6 per cent growth recorded in the second quarter.

Looking ahead, the "continued slowdown in the Chinese economy, the services-driven nature of growth in the US, as well as the trends of in-sourcing in China and the US", together with a tight domestic labour market, will continue exert a drag on Singapore's manufacturing sector next year, said the ministry.