Singapore’s growth will weaken further this year after slowing in 2011, constrained by a “difficult” global environment and government efforts to cut foreign-worker inflow, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said.
Malaysia may need to adjust the degree of monetary policy accommodation to avoid a broader build-up in financial and economic imbalances, the central bank said after keeping interest rates unchanged for an 18th straight meeting.
When dozens of Chinese bus drivers held Singapore’s first strike in 26 years last week, the island deported the perpetrators. Getting rid of the soaring prices that are emboldening calls for higher wages won’t be as easy.
Singapore said it will spend S$9 billion ($7 billion) on health care and other benefits for the elderly, while providing companies with more funds to increase efficiency as the economy adjusts to a tighter labor supply.
Singapore’s inflation accelerated to the fastest pace since January as transportation and housing costs increased, maintaining pressure on the central bank to allow the currency to strengthen even as growth falters.