Singapore Commodities: How Does This “Economic Tiger” Trade In 2020?

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Source: WikiMedia Commons

Economy of Singapore – Overview

Singapore is often described as one of Asia’s economic tigers and is additionally renowned for its conservatism and strict local laws, it is also currently ranked as the 14th largest export economy in the world.

The country has annual exports of $315 billion and imports of $259 billion, giving it a positive trade balance of $55.4 billion.

The GDP of Singapore is $296 billion and its GDP per capita is $87,900.

Export values have risen steadily in the last thirty years and Singapore has seen a rise in the last five years from $250 billion to $315 billion per year during that period.

Singapore’s Top 5 Commodity Exports

CommodityAmount (Annually)
Refined Petroleum $35.5 billion
Gold $1.91 billion
Diamonds $1.77 billion
Refined Copper $578 million
Raw Tin$520 million

Singapore’s Other Notable Exports

  1. Integrated Circuits – $65.5 billion
  2. Computers – $9.69 billion
  3. Semiconductor Devices – $8.68 billion
  4. Gas Turbines – $5.91 billion
  5. Broadcasting Equipment – $5.31 billion

Leading export destinations of Singapore are China ($42.9 billion), Hong Kong ($41.6 billion), Malaysia ($35 billion), Indonesia ($25.8 billion) and the United States ($22.6 billion).

Singapore’s Top 5 Commodity Imports

CommodityAmount (Annually)
Refined Petroleum $31.5 billion
Crude Petroleum $15.1 billion
Gold $2.22 billion
Diamonds $1.73 billion
Refined Copper $1.07 billion

Singapore’s Other Notable Imports

  1. Integrated Circuits – $36.4 billion
  2. Computers – $6.24 billion
  3. Semiconductor Devices – $4.58 billion
  4. Broadcasting Equipment – $4.77 billion
  5. Office Machine Parts – $4.1 billion

More Information on Singapore’s Imports/Exports

Refined Petroleum

Exports of refined petroleum account for 11% of Singapore’s total annual exports and the country ranks as the third largest exporter in the world with an 8.6% share of a global market worth $412 billion each year.

Asian destinations import $28.9 billion of Singapore’s annual $35.5 billion shipments of refined petroleum with Malaysia (25%) and Indonesia (18%) being the biggest recipients.


Exports of gold only account for 0.61% of Singapore’s yearly exports and the majority of their shipments are destined for Switzerland, who take 59%, followed by Hong Kong (19%).

Singapore does not feature amongst the top fifteen gold exporting countries, who account for 82.7% of total worldwide exports.


The global export market for diamonds is worth $127 billion annually and Singapore is the 13th largest exporter with a 1.4% market share.

The country is one of the fastest growing diamond exporters and has recorded the highest growth rate over the last five years, expanding the value of its exports by 161% in that period.

Refined Copper

The global export market for refined copper is worth $38.7 billion each year and Singapore has a 1.5% share with exports of $578 million.

China is a major export destination for the country’s refined copper exports and takes 87% of Singapore’s total shipments.

Raw Tin

Worldwide shipments of raw tin total $3.34 billion each year and Singapore ranks as the second largest exporter with a 16% market share, behind Indonesia (31%) and marginally ahead of Malaysia (14%).

The Netherlands is the leading export destination for Singapore’s raw tin exports with 23% of its total shipments heading to this European country, followed by the United States (18%) and Thailand (12%).

A Few Interesting Facts About Singapore

  • If you want to read the country’s national anthem you will find it written in micro-text on the back of their $1,000 note.
  • Singapore is one of only three current city-states in the world, Monaco and the Vatican City are the other two.
  • Despite the size of its economy, Singapore is in the top 20 of smallest countries in the world and is 15,000 times smaller than the United States.
  • Planners restrict the size of buildings in Singapore to a maximum height of 280 meters.

All figures based on OEC/IMF 2016 calculations and projections unless otherwise stated.

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