, Singapore

Slightly positive business outlook seen in manufacturing sector firms

A net weighted balance of 7% expects an improved situation.

Business sentiments in the manufacturing sector were slightly positive, even as firms continue to record weak demand in geopolitical and economic headwinds, read the recent data from EDB. 

"A weighted 19% of manufacturers expect business conditions to improve while a weighted 12% foresee a weaker business outlook," read the statement. 

Overall, 7% of manufacturing firms anticipate a better business situation for the period October 2023 – March 2024, compared to the third quarter of 2023.

Within the manufacturing industry, the transport engineering cluster stands out as the most optimistic, with 35% more firms anticipating a favorable business environment for the period between October 2023 and March 2024, when compared to Q3 2023. 

This positive outlook stems from the aerospace and marine & offshore engineering sectors, driven by strong global air travel demand and a rise in orders from the oil & gas and renewable energy industries.

In the electronics cluster, there is a net weighted balance of 23% of companies that foresee improved business conditions from October 2023 to March 2024. 

"This positive trend is mainly attributed to the semiconductors segment, where ongoing adjustments in customer inventories are expected to contribute to a gradual recovery in demand," read the statement.

Within the general manufacturing cluster, a net weighted balance of 6% of companies predicts more promising business prospects for the next six months.

Businesses in the food, beverages & tobacco sectors expect an uptick in business as the year-end festivities approach, whilst firms supporting the construction sector within the miscellaneous segment expect higher demand for construction-related products due to increased construction activity.

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