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Singapore manufacturing output up 0.9% in May

Friday, June 24, 2016 - 14:23
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Singapore's manufacturing output rose by 0.9 per cent in May compared to a year ago, following an expansion in the biomedical manufacturing cluster's output.

SINGAPORE'S manufacturing output rose by 0.9 per cent in May compared to a year ago, following an expansion in the biomedical manufacturing cluster's output.

The rise still fell slightly short of economists' estimated growth of industrial output. A Bloomberg survey of 15 economists had put the median estimate for May's industrial production at a one per cent year-on-year increase.

The biomedical manufacturing cluster expanded 13.2 per cent in May compared to the same period a year ago, with the pharmaceuticals and medical technology segments growing by 14.2 per cent and 9.2 per cent respectively.

However, excluding biomedical manufacturing, output last month fell by 2.3 per cent, data released by the Economic Development Board (EDB) on Friday showed.

The electronics cluster saw a year-on-year rise of 5.9 per cent, boosted by higher output in semiconductors (16.6 per cent) and other electronic modules and components (4.5 per cent). However, this was offset by declines in other electronic segments.

All other clusters faced a decline in output, with the transport engineering cluster suffering the largest drop of 17.2 per cent year on year in May.

Growth in aerospace and land transport segments by 21.7 per cent and 10 per cent respectively was not enough to salvage the cluster's output following the 34.2 per cent contract in the marine & offshore engineering segment.

The decline was on account of lower-level rig-building activity and weaker demand for oilfield and gasfield equipment amid the low oil price environment, said EDB.

The chemicals cluster's output fell 0.8 per cent year on year. There was a robust growth of 22.3 per cent in the other chemicals segment. Output of the precision engineering cluster decreased one per cent in May compared to the same period last year.

General manufacturing industries cluster's output decreased 2 per cent year on year. This was mainly attributed to the miscellaneous industries and printing segments, which recorded declines of 4.6 per cent and 14.5 per cent respectively.

On a seasonally adjusted month-to-month basis, manufacturing output decreased by 0.4 per cent in May compared to the previous month. Excluding biomedical manufacturing, output fell 1.4 per cent.

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