Precision Engineering, Chemicals and Biomedical Emerge as Top Singapore Industries in June 2014

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EDB’s June 2014 Manufacturing Performance update, published last week, signals that demand for chemicals and energy remains robust, says

Singapore’s heavy investments in R&D infrastructure and intellectual property rights protection make it ideal for companies keen on developing as well as marketing proprietary technologies.

Singapore’s manufacturing output grew 0.4% y-o-y in June 2014, marking an improvement from the previous month which saw Singapore’s manufacturing output decline 2.5% y-o-y. This is according the ‘Monthly Manufacturing Performance – June 2014’ released by Economic Development Board (EDB) on 25th July 2014.

The June Manufacturing Performance update also revealed that the chemicals, precision engineering and biomedical manufacturing were the top performing industries in June 2014. acknowledges that this is consistent with a Straits Times report on 26th May 2014 that Singapore’s oil & gas and chemicals sectors are growing at an unprecedented pace.


Singapore’s chemicals sector recorded the strongest growth in June and Q2 2014, partly because the petrochemicals segment contributed to the highest gain in the sector.

In June 2014, the chemical sector’s output expanded 10.5% y-o-y, driven by 23.2% growth in the petrochemicals segment. In May 2014, the chemical sector grew 8.6% y-o-y, attributed by 14.6% growth in the petrochemicals segment. In April 2014, 19.2% growth in the petrochemicals segment contributed to 8.9% y-o-y growth in the chemical sector.

Altogether, in H1 2014, the output of the chemicals sector grew 8.5% compared to the same period a year ago.

Precision Engineering

The precision engineering sector recorded 4.8% growth y-o-y in June 2014, up from 0.2% y-o-y in May 2014 and 4.2% y-o-y in April 2014. The machinery and systems segment demonstrated 4.6% growth supported by higher demand for lifts and escalators and mechanical engineering work. The output of the precision modules and components grew 5.2% due to production of fabricated metal products and metal precision components.

Cumulatively, in H1 2014, the precision engineering sector grew 3.7%, compared to same period last year.


The biomedical sector’s output grew by 1.6% y-o-y in June, an improvement from a 9.2% contraction y-o-y the previous month. The sector’s overall growth was driven by an 11% growth in the medical technology segment. The medical technology segment also expanded 9.6% in April 2014, due to higher export demand for medical diagnostic instruments and consumables.

After a robust growth (26.5%) in the pharmaceuticals segment in April, the segment’s output declined to 11.6% in May 2014 and declined by 0.3% in June. Cumulatively, in H1 2014, the the manufacturing sector’s output rose 9.5% compared to same period a year ago.

Optimistic About Q3 2014

According to EDB’s Business Expectations of the Manufacturing Sector, April to September 2014, published on 30 April 2014, business sentiment in the manufacturing sector is mostly positive for April until September 2014, due to improved economic conditions in Europe and the US. The precision engineering sector is most optimistic due to higher orders for semiconductor related equipment as well as higher demand for precision modules and components. The electronics sector expects to do well too due to demand for chips in smartphones and tablets. recognizes that the chemicals sector, though least upbeat, has performed well in Q2 2014. In addition, Chevron Oronite has expanded its Jurong Island plant on 15th July 2014. According to EDB’s forecast, 75% off manufacturers plan to invest in plant and machinery until March 2015.

Explaining further, Ms. Cheryl Lee, Operations Manager at said, “As one of the world’s leading energy and chemicals hubs, we expect Singapore’s manufacturing sector to expand as companies meet a growing demand for energy and chemicals. This will be further buoyed by U.S. and Europe’s growth. Domestically, Singapore’s heavy investments in R&D infrastructure and intellectual property rights protection make it ideal for companies keen on developing as well as marketing proprietary technologies. We are optimistic manufacturers will find Singapore company registration strategically beneficial.”

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