The semiconductor sector is currently the largest manufacturing segment of Singapore, contributing 7% of its GDP in 2021. Notwithstanding the 4.1% year-on-year decline in semiconductor manufacturing output in July 2022, the sector has grown at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 10.6% over the past ten years. Medium-to-long term growth is expected in the semiconductor industry to be robust given the megatrends of automation, industrial Internet of Things, 5G and Artificial Intelligence.

Value added by the semiconductors manufacturing industry in Singapore from 2012 to 2021. Source Statista 2022.

Today, Singapore accounts for 11% of the global semiconductor market, and 20% of global semiconductor equipment is manufactured in Singapore. Our semiconductor industry is poised for further growth, with around 2,000 more jobs expected to be created in the next 3 to 5 years.

Global competition for semiconductor investments to intensify, for economic and strategic reasons. The CHIPS and Science Act is an example of how other countries are introducing measures to attract semiconductor investments. Under the Act, a total of US$52.7bn in subsidies is earmarked to support semiconductor manufacturing and research, of which US$39bn is dedicated to subsidising the building of new fabs in the US. Spurred by the recent passing of the Act, companies such as Intel have announced plans to increase semiconductor production in the US.

Singapore has recently attracted investments from leading global semiconductor companies such as GlobalFoundries, Siltronic, and UMC. These companies invest in Soigapore because of the skilled talent, excellent global connectivity, ease of doing business, and well-developed semiconductor research and manufacturing ecosystem. In turn, they further drive the growth of Singapore's semiconductor industry and contribute greatly to Singapore’s R&D ecosystem with high value activities. JTC has developed four Wafer Fab Parks (WFPs) to meet the specific needs of the industry. The WFPs will be rolling out a series of physical enhancements, such as new lifestyle amenities, to create a more vibrant and conducive environment for companies and their employees.

In addition, JTC is also building semiconSpace in Tampines Wafer Fab Park, which is a new plug-and-play development that will meet the stringent requirements of semiconductor companies, such as vibration-sensitive flooring. The first phase is targeted to be completed this year.

In March 2022, Singapore launched the M2030 Careers Initiative to support companies to develop attractive career options in manufacturing, and make these job opportunities more accessible for locals. They are working closely with the team at SSIA on the measures under this initiative. The Singapore Precision Engineering and Technology Association (SPETA) will work with partners like SSIA and Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs) to develop the Manufacturing Employer Handbook to help companies develop structured career progression pathways for their employees. Partnership with SSIA and companies to offer high-quality internship opportunities for students from the Institute of Technical Education (ITE), to spark their interest in joining the manufacturing sector is done.

There are shorter-term risks of disruptions to supplies of raw materials and equipment due to the conflict in Ukraine and lockdowns in China. However, the overall outlook for the industry is very positive – the global market for semiconductors is projected to continue growing to reach US$1 trillion over the next decade, which is more than double the size of the semiconductor market in 2021.