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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs   28 October 2013  

Singapore's manufacturing output rises 9.3% on-year in Sept

SINGAPORE: Singapore's manufacturing output in September grew 9.3 percent on-year, largely boosted by improving export demand in the electronics cluster.

That is much higher than market estimates of a 5.7 per cent increase.

Economists say September's industrial production numbers lend support to the recovery story in the electronics sector.

And this means earlier estimates of third quarter GDP (gross domestic product) growth could be revised up.

Daniel Wilson, Asia-Pacific economist for ANZ, said: "So we think with this data for September, together with the NODX data, which was also surprising on the upside, Q3 GDP will be revised higher. We're looking for somewhere around 5.4 per cent year-on-year, and this compares to the early estimates of 5.1 per cent."

Across sectors, electronics output rose 20 per cent year-on-year in September.

At the same time, transport engineering output grew 14.4 per cent, supported by the marine and offshore engineering segment.

All segments in the chemicals cluster recorded growth last month, accounting for an overall growth of 5.8 per cent for the cluster.

Meanwhile, manufacturing output from the biomedical cluster was up marginally by 0.1 per cent on-year in September, and the general manufacturing cluster saw output increase 2 per cent.

Bucking the trend, output from the precision engineering cluster fell 0.8 per centon-year in September, partly due to weaker demand for semiconductor-related equipment and mechanical engineering work.

Leif Eskesen, India & ASEAN chief economist at HSBC, said: "We're also seeing signs in the rest of the region that things are on the mend at the moment.

"I think in China, we are seeing some recovery taking place on the back of the fine-tuning measures. Some of the numbers we've had out of Korea and Taiwan -- good bellwethers for the rest of the region -- have firmed a little bit. So I think there are some signs of at least a slight recovery in economic conditions in Asia."

Economists say if the strong momentum in the manufacturing sector keeps up, full-year GDP growth could hit or exceed the upper end of the official forecast of between 2.5 per cent and 3.5 per cent.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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