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Chart of the Day: SG Q1 GDP growth to climb 1.3% above pre-pandemic levels

The government's cautious approach in reopening boosted its growth.

This chart from Manulife shows that the final first-quarter (Q1) gross domestic product growth of Singapore was revised upward from 0.2% to a higher-than-expected 1.3% (on a year-on-year basis), owing to stronger growth in both the manufacturing and services sectors.

Although the economic recovery suffered a setback recently due to a jump in COVID-19 cases and the imposition of tighter mobility restrictions, which weighed on the services sector; there are still some reasons to be hopeful. 

Singapore’s economic output has already returned to pre-pandemic levels in Q1 ahead of its ASEAN peers, thanks to stronger fiscal and credit support measures; the government’s more cautious approach toward reopening the economy also helped. Crucially, the city-state made significant progress with its vaccination program. 

If the current pace of vaccination is sustained, it could have 70% of its population fully vaccinated by August and could potentially fully reopen the economy much sooner than its neighbours.

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