Caught in the trade war between the two giant countries; China and the United States, political concerns over Chinese telecoms company Huawei & decelerating consumer demand, Singaporean chipmakers have started reducing the production & cutting off hundreds of jobs, the company told Reuters.
The slump in a sector which almost made up a third of Singapore’s manufacturing output in the previous year is buttressing expectations that the export-driven economy might slide into recession in the upcoming months.
Manufacturing microchips for everything from smartphones to cars has long been vital to the success of Singapore, the small trading island seen as a bellwether for the global economy.
The Executive Director for the Singapore Semiconductor Industry Association, Ang Wee Seng stated that we are already witnessing that this downturn is different.
He added that he was preparing for the worst to come & had put his staff on standby to help the laid-off workers in trying & finding new jobs.
The semiconductor industry is a wider term for companies manufacturing electronic components inclusive of memory chips & microprocessors. In Singapore, many of the biggest chipmakers in the world have operations.
John Nelson, The Chief Executive Officer of UTAC, which is a Singapore headquartered company that tests & assembles chips, informed Reuters he had started a “consolidation process” in Singapore which might result in a 10 to 20 percent headcount reduction in the city-state by end of the year.
Backed by private equity firm TPG, UTAC, has around 10,280 employees all over the world of which around 1,700 are based in Singapore.
Nelson stated that we taking suitable actions to ensure there is a future for our business in Singapore. He further added that they might also add more days where the factory is closed and workers take unpaid leave.