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In this SWOT analysis of Singapore, you’ll discover the key strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats affecting the country. Some things you’ll learn may be surprising, such as the limited way in which the country creates money. Or the major threat plaguing the minds of the government and security agencies (but not the minds of the public).

Get ready to dive and learn about this beautiful country’s stagnation, growth, and ridicule.

Strengths: The acceptance of Singaporeans knows no bounds

Singaporeans encourage diversity — within day-to-day life and the workplace. In 1965, when the country gained independence, the many different cohabitants of Singapore were forced to work together to develop the country. Since then, most citizens have been taught to live harmoniously, regardless of race or religion.

The country is filled with people of all walks of life and the schooling system encourages everyone to assimilate and work together. Diversity translates well into the workplace with 89% of Singaporeans believing that diversity fosters success and innovation.

Additionally, the communities in Singapore are becoming more accepting of different sexualities, going so far as to openly celebrate LGTBQ. This could be because of the country’s continuous need to adapt, accept, and improve itself.

Another strength is that the country is gradually accepting more galleries, arts, and museums. Before, most of the streets were occupied by a cascading river of banks. Having more cultural pieces and appreciation is a benefit for all inhabitants of the country.

Singaporeans are known to be gracious, welcoming, and polite — not too surprising with how accepting they are. If you’re in need of assistance with directions or you’re suddenly feeling unwell, many people will step in to help you.

Negative press isn’t welcome by the community. Any cases of homophobia, racism, or xenophobia are met with disapproval by many Singaporeans. If possible, they will distance themselves from the culprits. This is because one individual’s (negative) thoughts or views don’t speak for the entire country.

Weaknesses: Falling exports in an export-focused country

Singapore’s economy relies heavily on the exportation of goods to various countries, but especially to the United States. This breeds trouble. If the economy in these countries were to suffer, by proxy, so would Singapore’s. In fact, Singapore would have a difficult time bouncing back until the other countries do.

In the event of a global recession, traded items will be limited. Most consumers will be in tough spots financially, and thus will focus on buying the basic necessities. If these aren’t products Singapore exports, the country will suffer.

Although we’re not in a global recession at the moment, Singapore is still having problems with exporting. The sales for non-oil domestic exports have fallen by 6% in 2018. Electronics too, another product exported by Singapore, fell by 12% in February of 2018.

Singapore is attempting to break into other markets, particularly the Chinese and Indian markets. Unfortunately, these two countries are subject to climate change and extreme economic costs. If the countries can’t offset these problems, it’ll impact Singapore too.

Trade and Industry Minister Chan Sung Sing of Singapore says Singaporeans need to understand the region to increase the success of entering the South-east Asian market. This is his response to the belief that Singaporeans only focus on issues within the country. Instead, in his opinion, people should learn about international countries to understand global perspectives. In the Minister’s words, he believes this is a weakness of the people and only when it’s corrected can the business truly thrive.

But the people wonder, is the government aware of its weaknesses? The government boasts about the continuous aid supplied to civilians. However, that doesn’t mean everything’s fine. Some people wish the government would do an introspection of itself rather than pointing fingers at the public.

Read: PESTLE Analysis of Singapore

Opportunities: The expansion of industries, buildings, and jobs

Singapore offers several job opportunities for international companies. Several key industries, including digital technologies, aviation, healthcare, and energy are expanding. This may mean more products to export or opportunities for international business partnerships.

Additionally, Singapore is expanding various buildings within the country. By 2030, a new Airport terminal is expected to be built. The sewerage system is expanding too, although completion will take six years. And the government is funding nearly $2 million USD for smart city projects like new hospitals and the restructuring of one of the oldest hospitals in the country.

The country is expanding infrastructure projects, water technology, solar panels for electricity, and network technologies for more reliable gas transmission and distribution. All of these new expansions will increase the quality of life for Singaporeans while also potentially supplying new job opportunities as well.

Threats: The chance of radical terrorism and cyber security breaches

Terrorism is a high threat in Singapore. But just a threat. The country has avoided attacks thanks to security agencies. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) monitors citizens and foreigners, on the lookout for potential terrorist propaganda. Even though many Singaporeans don’t feel terrorism is an immediate threat, the MHA rather be safe than sorry.

For instance, 14 radicalized foreigners have been found since 2015. Although no attacks were planned or carried out by these workers, the security agencies are staying on top of this to prevent devastation to the country.

Another threat is linked to cybersecurity. The need for cybersecurity professionals is on the rise. In fact, between 2017 to 2018, the need for cybersecurity jobs leaped by 110%. At the moment, over 3000 cybersecurity exports are in demand to fill wanted roles by 2020. This threat is also an opportunity — it’s clear technology is advancing and more jobs are needed to protect this technology.

SWOT Analysis of Singapore: Conclusion

Singapore is built on diversity. Since the country gained independence in 1965, people of all walks of life have worked together to encourage prosperity, success, and growth. Even now, most Singaporeans believe diversity is the key to innovation and encourage it in the workplace.

One major problem of Singapore is their over-reliance on exporting to other countries. If anything were to happen to the economies of these countries, Singapore could face financial devastation. Luckily, opportunities are rising. Not only in new industries which lead to job opportunities, but also in an increased quality of life thanks to the development of new types of energy.

Cybersecurity jobs are in dire need as technology advances. However, this also means many businesses are vulnerable until these jobs can be filled. And the biggest threat of all (at least to the government) is the possibility of terrorist attacks on Singaporeans. Nothing has happened yet, and that’s how the MHA wishes to keep it.

Image by Jason Goh