Empty shelves in Singapore supermarket

Hindsight is 20/20 and stockpiling turned out to be the right decision.

Panic buyers who did not believe in Singapore government’s fake news has won the day. Those who made bulk purchases and stock up last month has seen savings of 35% on average over the inflated prices today.

Eggs, toilet paper, rice and face masks are in severe shortage today. Since the Malaysian shut down on Mar 17, Singapore see less food import with eggs primarily in shortage. This is because Malaysia suppliers are obligated by law to fulfil domestic demand first before exporting excess for profits.

With Malaysian farms also facing labour crunch from the virus outbreak, food production will be lowered further and the Malaysian government is likely to impose export limits to Singapore.

Singapore food prices has already gone up by at least 15% overall, and this is set to worsen. The Singapore government is now airfreighting food from Thailand, South Korea, Australia and Indonesia, but the costs are outstripping its benefits.

If Malaysia does not see an improvement in their 14 days quarantine, the state governments have already indicated they are prepared to extend the quarantine to 30 days or even more if necessary. This would only mean prices in Singapore are expected to go up another 15%.