Singapore's manufacturing output grows 30% in May, biggest gain in about a decade

Singapore's manufacturing output grows 30% in May, biggest gain in about a decade

A worker welds steel at a factory in the industrial zone of Jurong in western Singapore
FILE PHOTO: A worker welds steel at a factory in the industrial zone of Jurong in western Singapore. (Photo: REUTERS/Edgar Su)

SINGAPORE: Singapore’s manufacturing output grew for a seventh consecutive month in May, increasing 30 per cent year-on-year, official data showed on Friday (Jun 25).

This is the biggest increase since November 2010, Reuters reported, and outpaced the previous month's 2.1 per cent.

Excluding biomedical manufacturing, output grew 29 per cent year-on-year in May, due in part to the "circuit breaker" measures in place in May last year, said the Economic Development Board (EDB).

On a seasonally adjusted month-on-month basis, manufacturing output increased 7.2 per cent in May, data showed.

READ: Private-sector economists raise Singapore’s 2021 growth forecast again to 6.5%: MAS survey

INCREASE ACROSS ALL CLUSTERS

All clusters saw year-on-year increases in May, headlined by precision engineering, which grew 58.6 per cent.

This was led by the machinery and systems segment, which rose 73.4 per cent on account of higher production of semiconductor equipment to cater to the "strong capital investment in the global semiconductor industry", said EDB.

The precision modules and components segment also rose 30.4 per cent, as production of optical products, metal precision components and plastic precision products increased.

READ: Still possible for Singapore’s economy to grow 6% or more this year, economists say

The transport engineering cluster expanded 44 per cent year-on-year in May, with the marine and offshore engineering segment growing 71 per cent. This was due to domestic circuit breaker measures and movement restrictions at foreign worker dormitories that "adversely affected" production last year, said EDB.

The aerospace segment grew 21.3 per cent from a low base last year due to the grounding of aircrafts amid travel restrictions brought on by COVID-19.

Biomedical manufacturing output increased 35.6 per cent year-on-year in May. The medical technology segment grew 47.6 per cent on the back of higher export demand for medical devices, while the pharmaceutical segment saw a 38 per cent rise with the increase in production of active pharmaceutical ingredients and biological products.

General manufacturing output rose 27.8 per cent year-on-year in May, with miscellaneous industries growing 96.1 per cent from a low base last year, when many of the construction related industries had to either stop or reduce production due to circuit breaker measures. The printing segment also grew 8.7 per cent.

The electronics cluster expanded 23.2 per cent year-on-year in May, as all segments recorded a higher level of production. The semiconductors segment grew 25.5 per cent, supported by demand from 5G markets and a low production base last year, EDB said.

Chemicals output increased 16.2 per cent year-on-year in May, with all segments also recording output growth.

Within the cluster, the specialties segment rose 24.8 per cent with higher production of industrial gases and mineral oil additives, while the petrochemicals segment grew 19.7 per cent from a low base in 2020 due to plant maintenance shutdowns.

The next monthly manufacturing performance release will be issued on Jul 26.

Source: CNA/ga

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