SINGAPORE - The Singapore economy grew by 1.8 per cent in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period a year ago, just topping analyst forecasts, according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry's flash estimates released on Thursday morning (April 14).
Private economists surveyed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) last month had said they expected economic growth in the January to March quarter to come in at 1.6 per cent.
Growth was flat compared with the last three months of 2015, in contrast to the 6.2 per cent expansion seen in October-December quarter.
The estimates are subject to revision as they take into account only data from the first two months of the quarter.
The MAS survey had also shown that private economists expect full-year growth to come in at 1.9 per cent, down from a previous forecast of 2.2 per cent and below last year's reading of 2 per cent.
2015 marked the weakest pace of growth since the economy contracted 1.3 per cent in 2009, so if GDP growth does slip below 2 per cent this year, it will mark a new seven-year low.
The Government has said it expects the economy to grow by 1 to 3 per cent this year.