Singapore’s economy contracted by 0.6 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2013, compared to the 1.5 percent growth in the preceding quarter, Malaysia’s national news agency Bernama quoted the Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) as saying.

On a quarter-on-quarter basis, the economy contracted by 1.4 percent, down from the 3.3 percent growth in the previous quarter.

The manufacturing sector contracted by 6.5 percent in the first quarter, following a 1.1 percent decline in the previous quarter.

The sequential decline largely reflected a contraction in the output of the biomedical manufacturing cluster.

The construction sector grew by 7 percent year-on-year, compared to 5.8 percent in the preceding quarter. The rebound was mainly due to a recovery in the private sector’s building activities.

The services industries grew by 1.2 percent on a year-on-year basis following the 1.7 percent growth in the previous quarter. Growth was primarily supported by expansions in the finance and insurance and business services sectors and other services industries.

The ministry will release the preliminary GDP estimates for the first quarter in May, including performance by sectors, sources of growth, inflation, employment and productivity, in its Economic Survey of Singapore.-VNA