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Singapore’s economy contracts by 2.2% in the first quarter compared to a year ago

Singapore’s economy contracted by 2.2% in the first quarter from a year ago as countries around the world battle the coronavirus outbreak, official estimates by its Ministry of Trade and Industry showed on Thursday.

On quarterly basis, the Singapore economy shrunk by 10.6% compared to the previous three months, the official figures showed.

The Ministry of Trade and Industry also downgraded its economic forecast for 2020. It now expects the Singapore economy to register a change in annual gross domestic product to between -4.0% and -1.0% from its earlier estimates of between -0.5% and 1.5%.

The Southeast Asian country is one of the earliest to release data on gross domestic product in the first quarter, providing a glimpse on how the ongoing coronavirus outbreak could affect economies around the world.

Singapore’s estimates are based on data in January and February and intended as an early indication of the economic situation in the first quarter. More complete data on Singapore’s gross domestic product in the first quarter will be released a few weeks later.

Singapore was one of the earliest countries outside China to report cases of the coronavirus disease, which has been formally named COVID-19. The country recorded its largest daily jump of 73 confirmed cases on Wednesday, bringing its total to 631 including two deaths. 

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