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Foreign Trade in Figures

Singapore's trade represented 337% of its GDP in 2022 (World Bank, 2023), the country being the 15th importer andexporter worldwide (WTO). Main exports include electronic integrated circuits (23.7% - as Singapore is a global leader in the production of semiconductors and integrated circuits), petroleum oils (12.3% - the country is a major refining centre, processing crude oil from various sources and exporting refined petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel), machines and apparatus of a kind used for the manufacture of semiconductors (4.1%), gold (3.0%), turbojets, turbo propellers, and other gas turbines (3.0%). Imports, on the other hand, were led by electronic integrated circuits and parts thereof (22.7%), petroleum oils and oils (20.8%), turbojets, turbopropellers, and other gas turbines (3.7%), and gold (3.7% - data Comtrade).

The main export destinations include China (12.4% of all exports in 2022), Hong Kong (11.2%), Malaysia (10%), the United States (8.8%), and Indonesia (7.2%), while most imports arrive from China (13.2%), Malaysia (12.5%), the United States (10.8%), South Korea (6.4%), and Japan (5.6% - data Comtrade). The strategy adopted by the country is to promote exports while minimizing barriers to imports. Singapore has signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) with 14 other Indo-Pacific countries. This free trade agreement is the largest trade deal in history, covering 30 per cent of the global economy. It includes the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) and ASEAN’s free trade agreement partners (Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea). The RCEP covers goods, services, investment, economic and technical cooperation. It also creates new rules for electronic commerce, intellectual property, government procurement, competition, and small and medium-sized enterprises.

The country has a structural trade surplus. According to WTO data, in 2022, exports of goods amounted to USD 515.8 billion and imports reached USD 475.5 billion (+12.7% and +17% y-o-y, respectively). With regard to services, Singapore’s exports reached USD 291.2 billion, agaist USD 258.6 billion in imports. The overall trade balance was estimated to be in surplus by 36.2% of GDP by the World Bank. Singapore has revised its full-year predictions for non-oil domestic exports and total merchandise trade in 2023, downgrading them due to a less robust performance in the initial three quarters. The decline is primarily attributed to the trade of oil and electronics. The new outlook anticipates a year-on-year contraction of 12% to 12.5% for non-oil domestic exports and approximately 10% for total merchandise trade in 2023.

 
Foreign Trade Values 20192020202120222023
Imports of Goods (million USD) 359,266329,830406,226475,578423,448
Exports of Goods (million USD) 390,763362,534457,357515,802476,252
Imports of Services (million USD) 206,508210,642247,003294,949295,498
Exports of Services (million USD) 219,792216,739282,559336,511328,033

Source: World Trade Organisation (WTO) ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Indicators 20182019202020212022
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 325.2321.7332.8333.3336.9
Trade Balance (million USD) 104,43797,828106,416125,748136,535
Trade Balance (Including Service) (million USD) 111,190111,112108,710149,453169,176
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 7.4-0.0-1.112.0-1.9
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 7.80.20.411.7-1.3
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 147.8146.1150.8149.0150.3
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 177.4175.6182.0184.3186.6

Source: World Bank ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Forecasts 20232024 (e)2025 (e)2026 (e)2027 (e)
Volume of exports of goods and services (Annual % change) 5.69.84.53.93.7
Volume of imports of goods and services (Annual % change) 6.711.35.24.54.3

Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook ; Latest available data

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 
International Economic Cooperation
Singapore is a member of the following international economic organisations: IMF, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), ICC, Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Colombo Plan, Common Wealth, G-77, WTO, among others. For the full list of economic and other international organisations in which participates Singapore click here. International organisation membership of Singapore is also outlined here.
Free Trade Agreements
Singapore is a member of Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) signed on 15 November 2020. The complete and up-to-date list of Free Trade Agreements signed by Singapore can be consulted here.
 

Main Partner Countries

Main Customers
(% of Exports)
2022
China 12.4%
Hong Kong SAR, China 11.2%
Malaysia 10.0%
United States 8.8%
Indonesia 7.2%
See More Countries 50.3%
Main Suppliers
(% of Imports)
2022
China 13.2%
Malaysia 12.5%
United States 10.8%
South Korea 6.4%
Japan 5.6%
See More Countries 51.3%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

Main Products

515.0 bn USD of products exported in 2022
Electronic integrated circuits; parts thereofElectronic integrated circuits; parts thereof 23.7%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 12.3%
Machines and apparatus of a kind used solely or...Machines and apparatus of a kind used solely or principally for the manufacture of semiconductor boules or wafers, semiconductor devices, electronic integrated circuits or flat panel displays; machines and apparatus specified in note 9 C to chapter 84; parts and accessories, n.e.s. 4.1%
Gold, incl. gold plated with platinum, unwrought...Gold, incl. gold plated with platinum, unwrought or not further worked than semi-manufactured or in powder form 3.0%
Turbojets, turbopropellers and other gas turbinesTurbojets, turbopropellers and other gas turbines 3.0%
See More Products 53.9%
475.4 bn USD of products imported in 2022
Electronic integrated circuits; parts thereofElectronic integrated circuits; parts thereof 22.7%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 13.1%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals, crude 7.2%
Turbojets, turbopropellers and other gas turbinesTurbojets, turbopropellers and other gas turbines 3.7%
Gold, incl. gold plated with platinum, unwrought...Gold, incl. gold plated with platinum, unwrought or not further worked than semi-manufactured or in powder form 3.7%
See More Products 49.5%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

To go further, check out our service Import-Export Flows.

 

Main Services

274.9 bn USD of services exported in 2022
36.79%
30.36%
11.44%
7.53%
4.49%
4.29%
2.69%
1.05%
0.94%
0.30%
0.12%
249.6 bn USD of services imported in 2022
36.76%
32.40%
9.74%
6.33%
6.12%
4.36%
2.39%
1.17%
0.40%
0.24%
0.09%

Source: United Nations Statistics Division, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

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