Foreign Direct Investment

FDI by sector – Singapore was the fourth largest recipient of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflows in the world (2020) at US$ 2,141.8 billion with financial and insurance activities being the largest recipient. This was an increase of 11.3% versus 2019.

 The chart below describes the way the FDI has been divided across sectors. It is important to note that most sectors, besides wholesale and retail trade increased their stock from the previous year.

The table below shows the top 5 countries’ investments in Singapore (2019)

Special Economic Zones (SEZs) –Given that Singapore is the 20th smallest country in the world and has the 3rd highest population density, it is evident that Singapore does not possess the spatial capacity to have SEZs. However, it forms the world’s largest port by shipping volume, which is why it has partnered with the governments of Malaysia and Indonesia to create the Iskander SEZ in Johor Bahru, Malaysia and Batam Export Processing Zone, Indonesia. Furthermore, with Indonesia increasing business licensing opportunities, the authorities are planning to increase the SEZ by 8,000 hectares with Singaporean companies at the forefront of this investment.

FDI growth over time – FDI net inflows into Singapore have increased significantly over the last decade from US$ 53.3 billion in 2010 to US$ 2,141.8 billion in 2020.

However, it is also vital to see that Singapore is a prominent market for investors with having the not only high inflow compared to its regional peers but also in the global scale, ranking 7th in the world in terms of FDI inflow as of 2017.


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