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Mixed bag for Singapore terminals throughput

Singapore: Singapore port terminals handled 20.3% fewer containers in May from a year ago but traffic edged up 0.7% from April, Reuters writes citing data from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore.

The numbers show this year's shrinking trade at the world's busiest container port may have stabilised. Most containers passing through Singapore's port are transshipments between East and West, and so are a barometer of world trade.

The figures reinforce government data on Wednesday that showed Singapore's May non-oil exports rose a bigger-than-expected 5.6% from the previous month on a seasonally adjusted basis, but fell 12.1% from a year ago.

"Evidence of a fledgling recovery in Singapore exports and industry is growing," said HSBC economist Robert Prior-Wandesforde after the exports data. "We remain optimistic that Singapore GDP will have grown on a quarter-on-quarter basis in the second quarter."

The fall in May port trade from a year ago was still the steepest fall this year, after a 17.7% fall in April from a year ago.  [18/06/09]

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