MANUFACTURING | Staff Reporter, Singapore

59% of manufacturers don't think business will be better before October

Only 41% of manufacturing firms anticipate a favourable business situation for the coming six months.

The latest Business Expectations Survey for the Manufacturing Sector has been released, showcasing jittery conditions.

According to the survey, a net weighted balance of 38% of manufacturing firms are anticipating favourable business conditions for April to September compared to the last quarter.

Broken down, 41% of manufacturing firms think things will get better in the next two quarters, 56% believe things will stay the same, while 3% think things will get worse.

The electronics cluster is most optimistic, at 66%, riding the demand for semiconductors and other electronic components throughout the ongoing global chips shortage.

Despite an anticipation of higher overseas orders in both pharmaceuticals and medical technology, only 32% of biomedical manufacturing firms expect a positive business environment. The remaining 68% think conditions will stay the same.

In the precision engineering cluster, approximately 61% of firms think conditions will remain the same, 29% believe things will be better and 10% believe things will get worse.

For the transport sector as a whole, 24% are optimistic, 6% are pessimistic, and 70% think things will stay the same.

Moving forward, a net weighted balance of 28% of manufacturers expect better output in the second quarter, particularly in the biomedical cluster.

A weighted 77% of firms expect employment to remain the same.

Another weighted 72% believe that they would be able to export orders unhindered for the coming quarters.

For the next twelve months, 72% of manufacturers plan to invest in plant and machinery.

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