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The many ills plaguing Singapore’s chipmakers

SINGAPORE – Robust demand for Singapore’s electronics and semiconductors during the pandemic fueled the city-state’s fastest economic expansion in over a decade and big-ticket investments in chip-making capacity.

Now, the notoriously cyclical semiconductor industry is in the grip of a deepening downturn as geopolitical and inflationary headwinds buffet the global economy.  

Chip makers in the island nation are increasingly concerned about the near-term possibility of a recession, with many feeling the sting of soaring electricity prices linked to energy market disruptions worsened by Russia’s war on Ukraine.

Singapore-based semiconductor and related firms are also contending with a tight domestic labor market and regulations that have raised the cost of and otherwise discouraged hiring foreigners.  

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