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President Obama will welcome the Prime Minister of Singapore to the White House

President ObamaAccording to White House today, President Obama will welcome the Prime Minister of Singapore to the White House. The United States and Singapore have strong economic and security ties, and our strategic partnership reflects a shared commitment to working together to ensure the continued peace, stability and prosperity of the Asia Pacific region. The President looks forward to discussing with Prime Minister Lee a broad range of strategic and economic issues affecting the Asia Pacific region.

Singapore has a highly developed and successful free-market economy. It enjoys a remarkably open and corruption-free environment, stable prices, and a per capita GDP higher than that of most developed countries. The economy depends heavily on exports, particularly in consumer electronics, information technology products, pharmaceuticals, and on a growing financial services sector. Real GDP growth averaged 8.6% between 2004 and 2007.

The economy contracted 1.0% in 2009 as a result of the global financial crisis, but rebounded 14.8% in 2010, on the strength of renewed exports, before slowing to 4.9% in 2011 and 2.1% in 2012, largely a result of soft demand for exports during the second European recession. Over the longer term, the government hopes to establish a new growth path that focuses on raising productivity, which has sunk to a compound annual growth rate of just 1.8% in the last decade. Singapore has attracted major investments in pharmaceuticals and medical technology production and will continue efforts to establish Singapore as Southeast Asia’s financial and high-tech hub.