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PM Lee: Manufacturing Is Key Pillar Of Singapore’s Economy

“Singapore’s economy is changing, but manufacturing will remain a key pillar,” said Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

This was the statement of Mr Lee during the 40th-anniversary celebration of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), a known pharmaceutical and healthcare company, which has invested S$1.6 billion in Singapore. The company helped spur growth in the biomedical sciences industry in the country.

According to Mr Lee, manufacturing creates good jobs for Singaporeans, integrates well with services and innovation and helps broaden the economic base of the cosmopolitan state.

With the boom of biomedical industry in Singapore and its influence in the country’s economy, Mr Lee said that the state will continue to invest in the biomedical sciences sector, which is a high value and knowledge-intensive sector. The industry, he said, commands high premiums and requires good individual skills, tight system discipline and rigorous Intellectual Property Rights (IPR).

Mr Lee underscored the importance of manufacturing industry in turning the wheels of Singapore’s economy. He mentioned that the manufacturing sector accounts for about 20 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Contributing largely to this are the biomedical and the electronics sector.

Meanwhile, biomedical sciences industry, which includes drug and medical devices production, research and development, accounts for nearly five percent of Singapore’s economy. The sector provides 18,000 good jobs, 70 percent of which are held by Singaporean workers.

GSK has maintained a fruitful partnership with Singapore over the years. Mr Lee noted that the company had contributed a lot to Singaporeans, not only in spurring economic growth, but also contributing to the society and to education. The country’s partnership with the reputable company also gave other companies confidence to invest in Singapore.

The company has announced its plans to invest S$40 million to S$60 million in Singapore to upgrade its plant in Quality Road. At present, GSK manufactures 14 drugs out of Singapore for global markets.