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Singapore's electronics manufacturing contracts

Posted: 28 Aug 2015 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:electronics? manufacturing? semiconductor? computer peripherals?

Low output in electronics caused the manufacturing sector in Singapore to fall year-on-year for the sixth straight month, according to the country's Economic Development Board. Low production in the pharmaceuticals and rigs sectors also contributed to the decline.

According to a Channel News Asia report, the electronics manufacturing sector fell 5.8 per cent year-on-year in July with the semiconductors and computer peripherals segment registering weak output. However, not everything is on the down side as the electronics modules and components and data storage segments recorded output growth.

Taken as a whole, the electronics cluster logged a 2.3 per cent drop in its output from January to July compared to the same period last year.

In another cluster, biomedical manufacturing also recorded poor output with a 13.4 per cent decline compared to a year ago. While the medical technology segment had an increase in output of 10 per cent, the pharmaceuticals segment experienced a reduction in its output.

The same trend is evident in transport engineering, which registered a decline in output of 6.1 per cent year-on-year in July. Although the aerospace sector grew 4.3 per cent, this was offset by decreases in the marine and offshore engineering and land transport segments.

Low level of activities in rig building, ship-building and repairing resulted in a contraction of 10.2 per cent in the marine and offshore engineering segment, according to EDB.

One industry, however, turned out to be just fine. The chemicals cluster increased output by 4.4 per cent year-on-year in July, owing to the performance of the specialties and petroleum segments. The two posted growth of 8.6 per cent and 5.9 per cent, respectively.

Semicon collaboration

Earlier this year, Singapore signed a memorandum of understanding with India in order to establish and develop trade and technical cooperation links between the electronics and semiconductor industry of both countries.

India and Singapore are two countries with varied strengths and opportunities in their respective ESDM industries. India has a huge domestic ESDM market, but lacks adequate manufacturing capacity. The demand-supply gap is expected to widen up to $300 billion by 2020 as the ESDM industry size is expected to reach $400 billion, while local production and services is estimated to be around $100 billion.

Singapore, on the other hand, is one of the leading countries in manufacturing of electronics products and semiconductors. With approximately 40 IC design companies, 14 silicon wafer fabs and 20 assembly and test units, Singapore nurtures an end-to-end ESDM ecosystem.

- Stephen Padilla

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