Singapore Records Lower Retail, Higher F&B Receipts in December

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The sales performances may indicate which sub-sectors are hiring, as well as reiterate that certain companies may need to pivot to remain competitive, says company setup specialist, Rikvin.

Singapore company registration specialists

We urge companies to tap schemes to upgrade the skills of their existing workers so that they may become value-added workers and earn higher wages. In addition, some companies may need to pivot.

The Department of Statistics Singapore (SingStat) has recently published the December 2012 Retail Sales as well as Food and Beverage (F&B) Indices. Rikvin views the year-on-year sales performances as indicators of which sub-sectors could be hiring. It also recognises the trend as compelling certain companies to pivot, in light of current drives and constraints.

Both indices, which reflect the short-term sales performances of the various retail and F&B sub-sectors, showed that the F&B sector has prospered but the retail sector has altogether recorded lower receipts year-on-year (y-o-y) and at current prices.

According to SingStat, the indices are shown in current as well as constant prices to reflect changes of sales values which result from fluctuations in price and quantity as well as changes in the volume of economic activity.


Overall, the F&B sector enjoyed a 2.6% y-o-y increase in sales between December 2011 and 2012. Over the period, food caterers, restaurants and other eating places enjoyed 4.5%, 3.0% and 2.8% increase in receipts respectively. However, fast food outlets recorded 0.8% less in receipts over the same period.


In total, the retail sector contracted by 1.5% y-o-y. Excluding motor vehicle sales, the retail sector contracted by 0.4% on an annual basis.

On a y-o-y basis, retailers of food and beverages and supermarkets recorded 6.3% and 7.3% change in sales between December 2011 and December 2012, representing the biggest increase in sales at current prices between that period. Over the same period, sales in medical goods and toiletries (4.1%), watches and jewellery (3.2%), furniture and household equipment (1.9%) and provision and sundry shops (1.8%) also performed positively y-o-y.

On the other hand, telecommunications apparatus & computers demonstrated the biggest dip in sales y-o-y, representing a 12.1% fall between December 2011 vis-a-vis 2012. Optical goods and books, wearing apparel and footwear, petrol service stations, recreational goods and motor vehicles recorded lower sales ranging between 1.5% and 6.1% during the same period.

Ms. Christine Lim, General Manager of Rikvin, said, “Last week, we reported that the Restaurant Association of Singapore has appealed to the government for a review of Singapore work pass policies to boost the F&B industry. However, the latest SingStat figures show that restaurants have fared better than some other services sectors year-on-year. To have a better understanding of whether Singapore’s manpower measures truly need to be altered to aid the F&B industry, we must compare the year-on-year performance come July.”

“That said, we urge companies to tap the various public-funded schemes to upgrade the skills of their existing workers so that they may become value-added workers and earn higher wages. In addition, some companies may need to pivot and really reflect on what they can do to better serve their current loyal customer base and convert those who aren’t already loyal to them. Singapore, a shopper’s and food lover’s paradise, offers many options to consumers and present many opportunities for entrepreneurs. Unless the latter retain mindshare, it would be a challenge to remain in business in Singapore,” affirmed Ms. Lim.

Established in 1998, Rikvin has since partnered with thousands of investors, entrepreneurs and professionals in their pursuit to access business opportunities overseas. Rikvin’s areas of expertise include company incorporation, offshore company setup, accounting, taxation and other related corporate services. Rikvin is also a licensed employment agency with the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and offers a full spectrum of work pass services for foreign professionals who wish to relocate to Singapore.

20 Cecil Street, #14-01, Equity Plaza, Singapore 049705
+65 6320 1888

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