Production reverts to expansion in May
SINGAPORE - Singapore's industrial production rebounded last month after two months of contraction as increased output of pharmaceuticals and petroleum countered a decline in electronics.
Manufacturing climbed 6.6 per cent on-year after a revised 0.2 per cent decline in April, the Economic Development Board said yesterday. Economists had forecast a 6.1-per- cent gain. Compared with the previous month, output increased a seasonally adjusted 1.8 per cent in May.
Yet some experts said they are expecting a pull back this month, on slower demand due to the euro crisis.
"We will most probably see a pull back in sequential growth" said DBS senior economist Irvin Seah. "Although the year-on-year number will see an improvement, that's largely because in the second quarter of last year, the earthquake in Japan essentially dislocated the global supply chain … Based on more recent data, we're likely to see very modest subdued growth in the second quarter."
Electronics production fell 9.7 per cent on-year last month, compared with a revised 12.3 per cent decrease in April, which analysts attributed to continuing cyclical weakness in global demand and companies moving to cheaper production centres in Vietnam and Thailand.
Pharmaceutical output rose 39.1 per cent after dropping 7.6 per cent in April, while transport engineering output expanded 35.4 per cent after rising 30 per cent in April.
By Yvonne Chan
27 June 2012