Business Guide · August 10, 2021

Singapore electronics sector

1. Industry Background

A Key Node for Electronics

Pick any electronics gadget today – a mobile phone, computer, video game console or a car navigation system. There’s a good chance that part of it was designed or made in Singapore.  Electronics is the bedrock of the Singapore manufacturing sector.  From its modest beginning as the only TV assembly plant in Southeast Asia in the 1960s, Singapore’s electronics industry has grown from strength to strength to become a vital node in the global electronics market.

Demand is Powering Ahead

Singapore is the choice location for companies to create and manage new markets, products and processes, technologies and applications.  From research and development, manufacturing, integrated circuit (IC) design, supply-chain management, logistics and distribution, to HQ activities, Singapore offers a total solutions environment of shared services for players in the electronics industry.

World Class Electronics Hub

Our vision is for Singapore to be a dynamic electronics capital that extends and expands the frontiers of high technology.  We aim to transform Singapore into a world class innovation-driven electronics hub, providing technology, manufacturing and business solutions; and enabling the development of new growth areas.

Backbone of Singapore’s economy

Electronics is the major industry underpinning Singapore’s economic growth, and contributes 30.6% of the city-state’s manufacturing VA.  Of S$11.8 billion in fixed asset investments in 2009, electronics accounted for almost 41.5% of the total investments. Employment for the industry stands at 76,000, which is 19% of total manufacturing jobs. In addition, the manufacturing of finished electronics products creates many spin-offs to other segments of the economy, such as precision component manufacturers, chemicals and materials suppliers, electronic manufacturing systems companies and logistics service providers.

End-to-End Manufacturing Capabilities

Singapore is the choice location for electronics companies to create and manage new markets.  Today Singapore is home to:

  • 14 silicon wafer fabrication plants
  • 20 semiconductor assembly and test operations
  • About 40 integrated circuit design centres
  • The world’s top three wafer foundries
  • Three of the world’s top five outsourced semiconductor assembly and test companies
  • Nine of the world’s top 10 fabless IC design companies.
  • About 80% of the world’s enterprise hard disk drives
  • 40% of the world’s hard disk media volume

Singapore has a full suite of activities to meet business requirements; from R&D to development, manufacturing, supply chain management, logistics and regional and global headquarters functions.

Pro-Business Environment

Singapore provides a business environment with respect for intellectual property, integrity, productivity and reliability. The human capital that Singapore provides is a ready pool of global talent, achieved by encouraging qualified personnel of all nationalities to work here. We welcome talents from all over the world to live, work, study and visit Singapore. Today, Singapore has built up a base of high quality engineering talent to cater to investors’ needs.  Our electronics sector is also constantly upgrading its workforce and anticipating future demand.  In 2008, 52% of research scientists & engineers in manufacturing industries were employed in the electronics industry. Electronics also accounted for 73% of Singapore’s manufacturing research and development expenditure in the same year.

Capability Development Schemes

Recognizing that talent is an important driver of economic growth, we have put in place a comprehensive set of capability development schemes to address the electronics industry’s talent needs.  In Jun 09, EDB announced that it would invest S$16mil in the IC Design Postgraduate Scholarship (ICPS), which will help to nurture high quality IC designers by providing 100% sponsorship to 150 IC design postgraduate students over 5 years.  In addition, EDB has been actively co-funding scholarships for undergraduate and postgraduate electronics studies in specializations such as wafer fabrication and IC design.

DOWNLOAD List:

  • Electronics Brochure
  • Electronics Factsheet
  • Exciting world, new discoveries
  • Singapore Electronics Industry Directory
  • Singapore Manufacturers’ Association
  • Industrial Design Supplement

2. Facts and Figures

  • In 2009, manufacturing output in the electronics sector reached S$63.9 billion1, contributing 30.6% to Singapore’s manufacturing VA in 2009. A total of 76,209 people were employed in the electronics sector in 2009.
  • Of the S$11.8 billion in fixed asset investment (FAI) Singapore received in 2009, electronics was the largest contributor, accounting for 41.5%. When fully implemented, the S$3.0 billion in electronics FAI is expected to contribute S$1.1 billion in value added (VA) per annum to Singapore’s GDP.
  • There are 14 silicon wafer fabrication plants, 20 assembly and test operations and about 40 IC design centres in Singapore. This includes four 12-inch fabrication plants, the world’s top three wafer foundry companies, three of the world’s top five assembly and test subcontractor companies, and nine of the world’s top 10 fabless IC design companies. In 2009, Singapore accounted for 11.2% of the global semiconductor output.
  • Singapore is a leading manufacturer of enterprise hard disk drives with Seagate and Hitachi Global Storage technologies having significant presence in Singapore. We are also a major HD media mfg location accounting for about 40 per cent of the world’s HD Media volume. Top players like Seagate, Showa Denko and Hoya are expanding their operations here.
  • 6 of the world’s top 10 EMS companies have significant presence in Singapore. Their operations range from design, high-value manufacturing, supply chain management and regional management. Key players include Flextronics, Sanmina, Celestica, Jabil Circuit and Venture. Prominent ODM players such as Asustek, Lite-On and Wistron also have HQ and R&D activities in Singapore.