Singapore’s economy in Q3 contracts less than expected

<p>SINGAPORE – Singapore’s economy contracted at a slower pace in the third quarter after the pandemic-related restrictions eased and growth improved in some major export markets.

The Southeast Asian city-state’s gross domestic product fell 5.8% in the third quarter from a year earlier, according to revised data from the Ministry of Trade and Industry on Monday.

The anticipated third quarter GDP estimate had shown a 7.0% contraction. GDP fell 13.3% in the second quarter.

Manufacturing increased 10.0% in the third quarter from a year earlier, after declining 0.8% in the second quarter. Construction fell 46.6%, compared to a 60.0% contraction in the second quarter.

Production of services fell 8.4% from a year earlier in the third quarter, compared to a 13.4% contraction in the second quarter, the data showed.

On a quarterly basis, GDP grew 9.2% in the third quarter on a seasonally adjusted basis. This is compared to the anticipated estimate of a 7.9% expansion. GDP contracted 13.2% in the second quarter compared to the first quarter.

Singapore’s GDP is expected to contract between 6.0% and 6.5% this year, compared to an earlier projection of a contraction between 5.0% and 7.0%, MTI said.

Singapore’s economy is expected to return to growth in 2021, given the improving outlook for major economies and further easing of global travel restrictions and national public health measures expected in the coming year, MTI said.

According to the ministry, the economy is expected to grow between 4.0% and 6.0% in 2021.

Write to Ronnie Harui at ronnie.harui@wsj.com