World Economy

Singapore Growth Double Its Forecast

Singapore Growth Double Its ForecastSingapore Growth Double Its Forecast

Singapore’s economy expanded 3.5% in 2017—more than double initial forecasts—thanks to an upswing in global growth, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in his New Year message on Sunday.

While 2017 “has been a good year”, Lee said, Singapore must continue strengthening its position at home and abroad to gear up for the challenges that 2018 will bring, CNA reported.

The Singapore economy, which grew 2% in 2016, picked up pace in 2017 on the back of surging global demand for electronic gadgets. Economists expect this trade-driven lift to continue in the new year.

Growth in 2017 came in at the top end of the ministry of trade and industry’s forecast, which has been progressively upgraded over the year. The official prediction, which was between 1 and 3% in February, has stood at between 3 and 3.5% since November.

MTI will release advance economic growth estimates for the fourth quarter and the whole year of 2017 on Tuesday morning.

“Incomes have gone up across the board, especially for low and middle earners. We have benefited from the global economic upswing,” Lee said. “But more fundamentally, our productivity has grown. Singaporeans are upgrading and learning new skills, while businesses are innovating and adopting new technology. That is how we will stay competitive and ready for the future.”

Lee said that 2017’s strong showing came despite uncertainties at home and abroad, including worries about security and terrorism, as well as a new administration in the United States “with a radical approach to international trade and foreign policy”.

“We are ushering in 2018 with confidence and strength”, he said.

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