After the COVID-19 pandemic last year the bulk of Singapore’s economy is projected to rebound in 2014. Some sectors – for example transport, tourism and aviation – will take longer, Premier Lee Hsien Loong said on Friday (Feb 12).
Mr. Lees said to reporters after a visit to Singapore Airlines and Changi General Hospital the first day of his Chinese New Year: “Last year, it was a duration of less than five to six per cent, especially because we had a ‘circuit breakers’ period that was of great importance to activities.
“I am not sure that even if we bounce back, we will be able to get back beyond where we were in 2019, before COVID-19 hit,” he said.
According to previous estimates published last month, Singapore’s economy shrank a historic 5.8 percent in the 2020 pandemic strike, while the fourth quarter last year saw a certain rise in most sectors as COVID-19 constraints were decreased.
The recovery of Singapore in 2021, as well as the rates of similar initiatives in other countries, particularly in the United States and Europe, would rely on the development of its vaccination campaign, says Mr. Lee.
In view of migrants’ jobs and secure management steps, the Prime Minister said the construction industry however, has their own range of problems, “but we will address that separately”
Passenger traffic is “a long way from recovery” Mr. Lee said, since several countries “very severely restricting international travel” particularly with evolving virus new and possibly hazardous variants.
“You can’t hope to return for a few days to purchase a ticket to go for a weekend to Bangkok or Hong Kong, for a bit.
“It will be a lot of years,” even IATA said for four – five years. “That will be a couple years. In the meantime, the airlines have to change the tide during this era and the Government shall do whatever necessary to assist them.
“But it cannot just be that we write checks for the salaries and then no adjustment is made. These are ongoing conversations between us and the industry,” says Lee.
The Prime Minister has even commented on vaccines and alternatives in place to interrupt vaccine supply.
“First of all, we have hedged our bets for vaccinations, and have purchased and pre-ordered multi-subject vaccines. I trust all are not disturbed.
“The way we saw earlier could be interruptions and delays. I assume that the flows are like a fair chance to get underway and do well… You see, for example, that Pfizer-BioNTech would restart its plant and then raise its output.
“I am reasonably confident that we will get the vaccines we need this year,” he said.
When the vaccinations are tardy, “our vaccination programme will have to stretch out a little bit” and Singapore will need to try to maintain more stringently and longer its other healthy management acts, Mr. Lee said.
“But we can live with that. Even if we have vaccinated most of the people in Singapore, I do not think that it will enable us to go back completely to normal … We will have to move to living with COVID-19 in some form for quite some time,” he said.
Mr Lee said he hoped that this measure would not be needed again, as it “have a big impact” when questioned if the different sectors could survive potential lock-downs.
From 7 April to 1 June last year, Singapore was subject to a disruptive loop that stopped non-essential activities with regard to COVID-19 spread.
“You can be resilient, you can have capabilities, but if we cannot do business for two-three months, it is going to hurt,” said Mr. Lee.
He added that Singapore ensures that it enhances its employees with the preparation of its expertise and that businesses develop ability to ensure company in a modern environment since the COVID 19.
However, the focus is the welfare of the citizens and the adoption of secure management initiatives, he added.
“That is why, this Chinese New Year, at most eight visitors and please only visit two households,” said Mr Lee.
“It has to be a more subdued mode. There will be time to celebrate in a more carefree way later on.”