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Economy in Brief

Singapore and Thailand Show Rise in Q3 GDP but Officials Warn of Decline in Q4
by Louise Curley  November 21, 2011

Singapore and Thailand announced their third quarter GDPs today.  Singapore reported a year over year rise of 6.1% and Thailand one of 3.5%.  Year over year growth in the two countries is shown in the first chart.  Officials in both countries, however,  see trouble ahead.  Thailand, in particular, will be suffering from the after effects of the devastating floods that have been raging in the country since July.  The National Economic and Social Development Board in Thailand estimates that the fourth quarter GDP could decline by as much as 3.7%.  For the year as a whole, the Board estimates that GDP will increase by only1.5%, down from the 4% estimated before the floods.  The outlook for 2012, however, has been raised, again as a result of the floods.  This time it will be the getting back to work and the reconstruction of the damaged infrastructure that will spur economic growth.    Growth could be between 4.5% and 5.5%  in 2012.

Singapore's Ministry of Trade is also looking for a slowdown in the fourth quarter but, in contrast to Thailand, Singapore's ministry sees the slowdown continuing into 2012.  The Ministry estimates 2011 GDP at 5.0% , but believes 2012 GDP could be as low as 1.0% and no higher than 3.0%,  They are concerned that conditions abroad will continue to depress demand for those products of importance to Singapore, such as electronics and precision engineering and begin to affect its booming biomedical manufacturing operations.  The manufacturing of the clusters of these products are shown in the second chart.  The electronic  and precision engineering clusters  have been declining since mid year while the biomedical cluster has continued to boom.   

Y/Y Change in Real GDP Q3 11 Q2 11 Q1 11 2012E 2011E 2010 2009 2008
Singapore 6.1 1.0 9.4 1.0-3.0 5.0 14.54 -0.85 1.58
Thailand 3.5 2.9 3.0 4.5-5.5 1.5 7.78 -2.36 2.56
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