Singapore exports slump again amid trade tensions

Singapore exports slump again amid trade tensions

Singapore’s non-oil exports slumped by their most in more than six years in June, in the latest sign of trouble for the island nation’s economy amid global trade tensions and slowing growth.

Data from government agency Enterprise Singapore published on Wednesday showed that shipments of non-oil goods shrunk by 17.3 per cent year on year during the month, or far worse than the 9.9 per cent fall forecast by economists polled by Reuters. 

June marked the fourth month in a row that exports from the Southeast Asian country’s have fallen. In May they dropped by 16.3 per cent year on year, revised figures show.

Shipments of electronics products were particularly weak, falling by 31.9 per cent last month compared to a year ago. Exports of goods to China and Hong Kong were down by 15.8 per cent and 38.2 per cent, respectively, reflecting recent weakness in the Chinese economy. Those to the EU, Singapore’s third biggest export destination, fell by 22 per cent in June compared to May’s 10.1 per cent slide. 

Singapore last week said that its economy experienced its slowest rate of growth in a decade in the second quarter, highlighting how the slowing global economic outlook and trade ructions are weighing on Asian economies.

The country’s dependence on high-tech exports has made it particularly vulnerable to trade tensions, which have disrupted supply chains across Asia.

Fears over Singapore’s economy were compounded earlier this week when the International Monetary Fund lowered its growth outlook for the nation for 2019 to 2 per cent from 2.3 per cent, citing rising trade upheaval globally. 

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