Business investment into Singapore surges to seven-year high

Singapore attracted S$15.2bn of investments last year, beating expectations

                                

Singapore exceeded its forecast for investment commitments in 2019, attracting S$15.2bn (£8.6bn, $11.3bn, €10.1bn); 39 per cent more than in 2018. This brought its investment commitments to a seven year high.

The increase, said Economic Development Board chairman Beh Swan Gin, can be attributed to specific sectors expecting a big rise in demand in the coming months, particularly the semiconductor, energy and chemical sectors.

Some chipmakers have also started predicting a recovery from the industry downturn, helped by a pick up in the smartphone market. The electronics industry accounted for 28.4 per cent of those commitments. Pledges for investments in fixed assets such as facilities, machinery and other equipment also surged.

Firms are investing for the long term and preparing for the eventual upturn in demand despite the challenging economic climate, said Dr Beh. This current wave of investment is expected to create 32,814 new jobs. However, some say this jobs bonanza will simply highlight a tech talent shortage in Singapore.

Dr Beh added: "The 2019 investment commitment numbers are testament to Singapore's position as the preferred location for companies to tap into Asia's growth, and Singapore's competitiveness as a hub for manufacturing, innovation and digital activities. We are cautiously optimistic that the investment flows in 2019 will continue into 2020.”

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