Huge Investments Set to Create 32,000 Job Opportunities in Singapore Despite Global Economic Uncertainties
Despite the global economic uncertainties of the challenging past year, Singapore beat expectations for investment commitment last year. SG$15.2 billion in investments were secured last year. This is expected to create more than 32,000 job opportunities in the coming years. The majority of these jobs will go to Singaporeans. This trend was seen between 2015 and 2018, where 60,000 jobs were created of which 50,000 were taken up by Singaporeans.
The key to the surge in investments last year was the manufacturing investments from semiconductors as well as energy and chemical companies. Giants in the technological and gas field have pumped in multibillion-dollar investments to expand their presence here. Technology firm Micron expanded its presence here with a multibillion-dollar investment, while gas giant Linde pumped in SG$1.9 billion to quadruple its footprint in the Republic by 2023.
This shows the confidence that these companies have in Singapore’s strong fundamentals and its strategic position in fast-growing Asia. The total investment exceeded the Economic Development Board’s (EDB) forecast of SG$8 billion to SG$10 billion for the year, and also exceed the figures in 2018. The electronics industry is responsible for approximately 28.4 per cent of investments.
Job Opportunities in Singapore Double the Forecast
Once fully implemented, the projects will create a total of 32,814 jobs, which is close to double the forecast of 16,000 to 18,000 positions. Half of these new jobs will be in the digital economy and approximately 60 to 70 per cent will be jobs for professionals, managers, executives, and technicians. It was highlighted that although Singapore drew strong investments in the previous year, there isn’t any room to be complacent as there is a global competition for talents in digital and technological sectors.
There is an expectation of contribution of SG$29.4 billion in value-added per annum due to the projects committed to last year. This will be a direct contribution to Singapore’s gross domestic product. Total business expenditure, which refers to the companies’ incremental annual operating expenditure, was SG$9 billion last year. It exceeded the forecast of SG$5 billion to SG$7 billion.
Main Reasons for the Strong Investment Commitments
There are three key reasons for the strong investment commitments last year. The first is Singapore’s position at the heart of a growing Asia which provides companies with access to the booming region. The second would be the trust in the Republic and the stability it offers. Last but not least, the sophisticated capabilities of its economy. The EDB will continue to strive and strengthen Singapore’s position as a platform for companies to tap opportunities in the region, reinforce its role as a hub in the development of digital solutions, and supporting companies in innovation.
On the other hand, EDB is moving away from yearly forecasts to long-to-medium-term ones to show how companies plan their investment positions. From a multi-year perspective, it is still expected by the EDB to draw SG$8 billion to SG$10 billion in investments and create approximately 16,000 to 18,000 jobs yearly. Based on the pipeline of projects, investment commitments for 2020 should come within the forecast bracket.