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News > Singapore exports up by 12.4% in May on year-ago

Singapore exports up by 12.4% in May on year-ago

Tuesday 21 June 2022

Singapore’s key non-oil domestic exports (NODX) jumped in May, on a year-ago low base, trade agency Enterprise Singapore (ESG) reported.

NODX growth surged to 12.4 per cent year on year, from 6.4 per cent in the month before – higher than the median estimate of 7.5 per cent in a Bloomberg poll.

Said Nicholas Mapa, senior economist at ING: “The stronger-than-expected gain for NODX will be supportive for a decent second-quarter gross domestic product report.

“Accelerating inflation will likely sap some momentum from retail sales but at least for now, both exports and industrial production have held up pretty well.”

Shipments in the linchpin electronics industry were up by 12.9 percent in May, against 12.8 percent in April. Non-electronics NODX expanded by 12.2 percent, up from 4.6 per cent before.

ESG attributed the electronics NODX growth to exports of integrated circuits and integrated circuit parts, as well as disc media products. Non-electronics NODX was buoyed by non-monetary gold, specialised machinery and measuring instruments.

Headline NODX to most of Singapore’s top 10 markets rose year on year in May, despite declines in exports to the United States, the European Union, Hong Kong and South Korea.

NODX demand was led by Indonesia, on demand for plastic plates sheets, petrochemicals and non-monetary gold. Exports to Malaysia were also up significantly, driven by shipments of integrated circuits, non-monetary gold and measuring instruments.

NODX to mainland China inched up by 0.2 per cent, against a fall of 10.6 per cent in April, as the 1.5 per cent uptick in non-electronics NODX offset a 6.3 per cent drop in electronics. That’s as Singapore’s biggest trade partner has implemented coronavirus-related lockdowns since the start of the year, with tight curbs in the major financial hub of Shanghai lifted only on Jun 1.

Mapa said: “Going forward, we could see moderate growth for exports bound for China in the near term as it follows a more flexible zero-Covid policy.”

NODX to emerging markets was higher by 61.9 per cent, against a dip of 1.5 per cent in April, thanks to the Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam region, Latin America and South Asia.

Non-oil re-exports – a proxy for wholesale trade – rose by 19.9 per cent, up from 14.5 per cent in April. Total trade increased by 32.4 per cent year on year, picking up from 21.6 per cent in the month before, which ESG attributed to increases in both oil and electronics trade.

On a monthly, seasonally adjusted basis, NODX was up by 3.2 per cent to S$17.1 billion, reversing the previous month’s 3.3 per cent decline.