Singapore's Merlion Bay (Source :internet)

Singapore (VNA) – The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for Singapore’s manufacturing sector increased slightly in March 2016, but tough times still lie ahead for the sector, the Singapore Institute of Purchasing (SIPMM) reported.

The sector’s PMI in March rose to 49.4 points in comparison with the previous month’s 48.5, although it is still under 50 points – a defining line between growth and decline.

New export orders, employment and business conditions all showed signs of recovery in March, while the index for the electronics sector fell for the ninth straight month, with a PMI of 49 points.

According to Head of Treasury Research and Strategy of OCBC Bank Selena Ling, new orders and new export orders in the manufacturing and electronics sectors both increased only slightly in the reviewed time due to current weak manufacturing activity.

The country’s economy depends largely on exports, but Singapore is facing severe problems from outside elements such as China’s economic slowdown, geopolitical risks and pressure to reduce energy costs.-VNA