China overtook the European Union as the top export market for Singapore in 2013, according to statistics released on Friday by trade agency International Enterprise Singapore.
Singapore's non-oil domestic exports (NODX), a key gauge of the city state's export performance, to China grew by 10.6 percent year on year to 23.5 billion Singapore dollars (18.5 billion U.S. dollars) in 2013.
In contrast, its NODX to the EU fell by 25.5 percent to 19.3 billion Singapore dollars (15.2 billion U.S. dollars), while its NODX to the United States fell 6.6 percent to 15.5 billion Singapore dollars (12.2 billion U.S. dollars). The United States remained Singapore's third largest export market.
For the year 2013 as a whole, Singapore's NODX fell by close to 6 percent to 167.7 billion Singapore dollars (132 billion U.S. dollars).
Singapore's total trade, including petrochemical products, fall by 4.8 percent to 980.2 billion Singapore dollars (771.8 billion U. S. dollars) in 2013, with China overtaking Malaysia as its top trading partner.
The non-oil domestic exports in December rose by 6 percent year on year. The rise, which was better than market estimates, came after a surprise contraction of 8.9 percent in November.
The growth was attributed to an increase in non-electronic exports, which grew by 10.6 percent, in contrast to the decrease of 8.9 percent in the previous month.
Electronic exports, however, contracted by 3.1 percent in December, after the 8.9 percent decline in the preceding month.