Singapore exports drop, show little improvement

Associated Press

The slump in Singapore’s non-oil exports eased only slightly in June, suggesting the city-state’s economy still faces a tough battle after emerging from recession in the second quarter.

Exports fell 11 percent in June from the same month of 2008 to 11.4 billion Singapore dollars ($7.9 billion) following a 12 percent drop in May, according to Trade and Industry Ministry figures released Friday. Compared to May, exports fell a seasonally adjusted 5.2 percent.

The island’s economy grew an annualized 20.4 percent in the second quarter from the previous quarter after contracting each of the previous four quarters. The government trimmed its forecast for 2009’s economic contraction earlier this week and now expects the economy to shrink between 4 percent and 6 percent.

Non-oil exports, which have fallen 14 straight months, were equal to about 60 percent of gross domestic product last year.

Electronic products – which account for 33 percent of non-oil exports – fell 22 percent while petrochemicals dropped 36 percent. Pharmaceuticals rose 1.1 percent in June after jumping more than 40 percent the previous two months, the ministry said.

Oil exports, which account for 27 percent of total exports, fell 44 percent in June as prices plunged from a year ago.

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