Singapore — The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) announced that the economy is expected to grow by between 6 and 7 per cent for this year, which is higher than earlier projected forecasts of 4 to 6 per cent.
The economy is proving to hold up stronger than expected for the first half of 2021, along with a stabilisation in the local pandemic situation.
The country’s vaccination effort is one key reason given for the improvement in Singapore’s economic outlook, with about 70 per cent of the population already completely vaccinated, which had been the government’s aim for National Day (Aug 9).
Moreover, 79 per cent of the population has already received the first Covid vaccine jab.
MTI said on Wednesday (Aug 11), “Barring a major setback in the global economy, the Singapore economy is expected to continue to see a gradual recovery in the second half of the year, supported in large part by outward-oriented sectors.
The progressive easing of domestic and border restrictions as our vaccination rates continue to rise will also help to support the recovery of our consumer-facing sectors and alleviate labour shortages in sectors that are reliant on migrant workers,” added the ministry.
Singapore’s 70 per cent vaccination rate, one of the highest in South East Asia, is also what’s allowing the easing of Covid measures starting from this week.
However, MTI warned that risks to the global economy remain, such as the geopolitical uncertainty of major economies, the higher-than-expected rate of inflation, as well as the Covid-19 pandemic, which is still wreaking havoc in many countries, especially due to the more highly transmissible Delta variant.
Singapore’s economy grew by 14.7 per cent in the second quarter of this year in comparison to 2Q 2020, which is higher than the official estimate of 14.3 per cent and the 14.2 per cent growth that analysts predicted in a survey conducted by Reuters.
In Jun, a survey by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) already showed that the economy is expected to expand faster than it was originally predicted.
This was largely due to an increased pace of growth in manufacturing, non-oil domestic exports, and finance and insurance, outweighing the slower growth in other sectors.
MAS’ survey of external professional forecasters showed that they expect the country’s gross domestic product to grow by 6.5 per cent this year, which is higher than the 5.8 per cent predicted last Mar.
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