Singapore, nevertheless, faces several longer-term challenges,
including a recent lack of growth in total factor productivity (TFP) and
more intense competition from low-cost regional producers, resulting in
structural changes and declining employment, especially in
Although linked to the importance of external demand, the decline in TFP
(and associated decline in capital productivity) raises concerns
regarding Singapore’s active industrial policy. The Government has taken
steps to reduce business costs and is gradually redefining its role in
the economy, including by divesting some non-strategic public sector
companies. It is also planning to introduce an economy-wide competition
law and is continuing its liberalization of key services and utilities.
The reforms should increase competition in the economy and thus
efficiency, thereby strengthening the resilience of the Singapore
economy in dealing with these challenges.
The WTO report, along with a policy
statement by the Government of Singapore, will be the basis for the
fourth Trade Policy Review (TPR) of Singapore by the Trade Policy Review
Body of the WTO on 14 and 16 June 2004.
following documents are available in MS Word format.
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Trade Policy Reviews are an exercise, mandated in the WTO agreements,
in which member countries’ trade and related policies are examined and
evaluated at regular intervals. Significant developments that may have
an impact on the global trading system are also monitored. For each
review, two documents are prepared: a policy statement by the
government of the member under review, and a detailed report written
independently by the WTO Secretariat. These two documents are then
discussed by the WTO’s full membership in the Trade Policy Review Body
(TPRB). These documents and the proceedings of the TPRB’s meetings are
published shortly afterwards.
copies of previous TPR publications are available for sale from the
WTO Secretariat, Centre William Rappard, 154 rue de Lausanne, 1211
Genève 21 and through the on-line
TPR publications are also available from our co-publisher Bernan Press, 4611-F Assembly Drive, Lanham, MD 20706-4391, United States.
Schedule of forthcoming reviews
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Benin/Burkina Faso/Mali: 28
and 30 June 2004
Belize/Suriname: 12 and 14 July 2004
European Union: 21 and 23 July 2004