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Singapore's 2008 growth slumps to 1.5 pct, PM says

Singapore's 2008 growth slumps to 1.5 pct, PM says

Singapore's economic growth slumped to 1.5 percent in 2008, its slowest pace in seven years, as a severe global downturn hurt tourism and demand for the city-state's exports, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said Wednesday.
"The fall in worldwide demand has hit our exports, our tourism sector and our broader economy," Lee said in a statement. "Our economy will probably contract further."
The growth data reflects the rapid deterioration of global trade in the second half of the year. The government originally expected the economy to grow at least 5 percent in 2008 and 2.5 percent as recently as last month.
Gross domestic product expanded 7.7 percent last year.
Lee said the government plans to announce measures next month that will help companies, which will likely layoff more workers in 2009. The government's official economic growth forecast for next year is a range between a 1 percent contraction and a 2 percent expansion.
"More companies will be forced to downsize," Lee, 56, said. "I expect more retrenchments in the next few months."


Updated : 2020-12-05 19:29 GMT+08:00