Photo of Lee Hsien Loong from MCI

According to the latest report by the Economic Development Board (EDB) released yesterday (Jan 30), the already-worsening Singapore economy had sank again with business expenditures falling by 21.68% in 2017. Total business expenditures for 2017 was only S$6.5 billion, significantly lower than 2016’s S$8.3 billion.

However the EDB was quick to cover up the negative statistics with selectively reporting. In-bound investments for 2017 was stagnated at S$9.4 billion, but EDB claimed they “expected” more jobs and greater value-add. The EDB wrote a fake news with aplenty of positive “expectations”:

“After four consecutive years of decline, the Republic secured S$9.4 billion worth of in-bound investments last year, maintaining the level seen in 2016 but with more jobs and greater value-add expected to be generated…The results reflect the continued confidence of global companies in Singapore as a strategic location to base key business functions driving innovation and growth… The projected fixed assets investments (FAI) for 2017 to be between S$8 billion and S$10 billion. Once the projects are fully implemented, the investments last year are expected to create 22,500 jobs — 12 per cent higher compared with 2016. The investments in 2017 are expected to add S$17 billion per year to the Singapore economy, higher than that of 2016 (S$12.9 billion) as well as the forecast range of between S$12 billion and S$14 billion. In particular, investments in headquarters and professional services as well as research and development are expected to yield the highest value-add (about S$5 million), and create the most jobs (7,035).  This is followed by the engineering and environmental services industry (about S$4.3 million and 3,874 jobs).”

None of the expectations are real.

The EDB also claimed that the 2016’s higher total business expenditures as a “one-off” and do not reflect negatively on the economy:

“Those projects have a long investment cycle, and do not happen on a recurring basis.”