Singapore’s economy probably hasn’t slid into recession yet, though the government is monitoring conditions closely and will step in with support measures if needed, said Indranee Rajah, minister in the Prime Minister’s Office.
“We’re not new to difficult economic situations, we’re not new to recessions,” Rajah, who is also Singapore’s second minister for finance and for education, said in an interview Thursday with Bloomberg Television’s Juliette Saly. “We don’t think we’ve gone into a recession as yet, but we’re keeping a very close eye on it.”
Export-reliant Singapore has acutely felt the pressures of the US-China trade war, with officials lowering 2019 growth forecasts almost to zero after the economy contracted an annualized 3.3 percent in the second quarter from the previous three months. Third-quarter figures are due this month.
“If there is a need to, and the government needs to step in with assistance, we will do so,” Rajah said. “If we need some safety nets and buffers, then our agencies will have to step in.”
With an election looming in the country, Rajah said Singapore needs a government that can provide stability, grow the economy, focus on jobs and build a nation for the future.