Singapore’s exports fall 5.6% in October; first decline in nearly 2 years

SINGAPORE: Singapore’s non-oil domestic exports (NODX) fell by 5.6 per cent in October from a high base a year ago, the first time exports have declined in nearly two years.

The last time exports declined was in November 2020. Exports in September grew by 3.1 per cent.

According to data released by Enterprise Singapore (ESG) on Thursday (Nov 17), both electronics and non-electronics decreased in October.

Exports to the top 10 markets as a whole declined in October, mainly due to China, the EU 27 and Malaysia. However, exports to the US, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea rose.

On a month-on-month seasonally adjusted basis, NODX decreased by 3.7 per cent, compared with the previous month’s 3.9 per cent decline. Non-electronic domestic exports declined while electronics grew.

The level of NODX reached S$15.9 billion in October, on a seasonally adjusted basis. This was lower than September’s S$16.5 billion and the levels a year ago.

NODX decreased over the year, mainly due to non-electronics, such as pharmaceuticals, non-monetary gold and petrochemicals. Electronics also declined.

On a year-on-year basis, electronics NODX declined by 9.3 per cent in October, following a 10.6 per cent contraction in the previous month.

Integrated circuits, disk media products and personal computer parts declined by 11.1 per cent, 45.7 per cent and 31.6 per cent respectively, contributing the most to the decline in electronics NODX.

Pharmaceuticals, non-monetary gold and petrochemicals contributed the most to the fall in non-electronic NODX.

Exports to the top 10 markets as a whole declined in October, with China, the EU 27 and Malaysia being the largest contributors to the drop.

NODX to China fell 32 per cent, a slower drop compared to the 33.7 per cent decrease in September. October’s decline was mainly due to non-monetary gold, specialised machinery and petrochemicals.

Meanwhile, exports to the EU 27 in October saw a slower decline of 19.5 per cent, after the 3 per cent rise in the preceding month. October’s decline was due to pharmaceuticals, non-electric engines and motors, and petrochemicals.

Exports to Malaysia declined by 16.1 per cent after the 1.1 per cent growth in September, due to non-monetary gold, diodes and transistors, and measuring instruments.

On a year-on-year basis, total trade increased by 8.6 per cent in October, easing from the 20.7 expansion in the preceding month. Total exports rose by 6.3 per cent, while total imports grew by 11.1 per cent.

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