Singapore's May manufacturing output grows at slower pace of 5%

Workers at Panasonic's refrigerator compressor factory in Bedok.
Workers at Panasonic's refrigerator compressor factory in Bedok.ST PHOTO: JOYCE FANG

SINGAPORE - Singapore's manufacturing output rose by 5 per cent in May from a year ago, easing from the 6.7 per cent increase in April, as the electronics segment grew at a slower pace.

This marks the 10th straight month that manufacturing output has grown year-on-year, according to figures released by the Economic Development Board on Friday (June 23).

Leaving out biomedical production which was hit by the slump in pharmaceuticals, May's output grew 13.1 per cent year-on-year.

On a month-on-month, seasonally adjusted basis, manufacturing output fell by 3.5 per cent in May, and declined by 4.2 per cent when biomedical production was excluded.

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Cumulatively, overall manufacturing output was up by 7.4 per cent from January to May this year.

Electronics output rose by 35.1 per cent year-on-year last month, down from the 48.2 per cent surge in April, due to a pullback in the semiconductors, data storage and other electronic components segments.

 

The chemicals industry also saw an increase in output in May, rising by 5.3 per cent year-on-year - reversing the 1.9 per cent decline in April.

Output from the precision engineering cluster, meanwhile, grew 19.1 per cent, up from April's 15.7 per cent growth.

In contrast, biomedical manufacturing output shrank by 22.2 per cent against May 2016, dragged down by the weak pharmaceuticals segment which recorded a 32.7 per cent drop in production last month.

Transport engineering and general manufacturing industries also posted declines.

Weighed down by the weak marine and offshore engineering segment, the transport engineering cluster booked a 12.8 per cent drop in output; while general manufacturing industries' production slipped by 9 per cent.