Snapshot: Sourcing from Singapore

A sovereign city state off the southern tip of Malaysia, Singapore is a global financial, manufacturing, and logistics hub. Leveraging its highly developed manufacturing sector, skilled workforce, and excellent infrastructure, Singapore exported more than US $390 billion worth of goods in 2019. This article explores some of the advantages to sourcing from one of Asia’s most resilient ‘Tiger’ economies.

According to World Exports, Singapore’s top export products include:

  1. Electrical machinery, equipment: US$120.7 billion (30.9% of total exports)
  2. Machinery including computers: $59.3 billion (15.2%)
  3. Mineral fuels including oil: $47.9 billion (12.3%)
  4. Optical, technical, medical apparatus: $20.9 billion (5.4%)
  5. Gems, precious metals: $17.8 billion (4.6%)
  6. Plastics, plastic articles: $14.6 billion (3.7%)
  7. Organic chemicals: $12.9 billion (3.3%)
  8. Perfumes, cosmetics: $9.7 billion (2.5%)
  9. Pharmaceuticals: $8.1 billion (2.1%)
  10. Aircraft, spacecraft: $8 billion (2%)

A Behemoth in Global Logistics

Did you know: At any given moment, there are around 1000 ships docked at the Port of Singapore!

A tiny country of just over 721 square kilometers with practically no natural resources, Singapore’s export economy benefits from the country’s strategic location in the Straits of Malacca and its highly developed Maritime Infrastructure. The Port of Singapore is the second world’s largest in terms of container volume, being only slightly edged out by the Port of Shanghai in the past decade. Connected to over 600 ports in 120 countries, Singaporean producers can source raw materials and components quickly and easily from practically anywhere in the world.

Ease of Doing Business

Singapore is among the easiest countries in the world to do business, ranking number 2 globally by the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index in 2019. Singapore is also ranked very well in terms of corruption, ranking number 4 in the world by Transparency International with a score of 85/100. In addition to having a highly developed economy and infrastructure, Singapore boasts an excellent legal system that protects the rights of international businesses: with English as an official language and a highly developed Common Law court system and no force majeure provisions (unlike China), those doing business can be assured that their contracts will be upheld to the highest international standards.

Another significant advantage is that Singapore levies no Goods and Services Tax (GST) and exemptions on imports for domestic manufacturers’ materials and components. All of these factors make Singapore an attractive place for sourcing, despite the high labor costs associated with a highly developed economy.

About HQTS

With over 25 years of experience in quality assurance, HQTS is ready to help your business build strong, meaningful, and transparent supplier relationships across Asia. Our many service locations are ready to be your one-stop shop for your inspection needs, including  factory audits, translation services, production monitoring, pre-shipment and sorting inspections, and everything in between. Contact us today for more information on how we can help you in your sourcing journey.