Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Will Singapore follow Japan in facing a "Lost Decade" ?

Towards the end of the 1980s, Japan had a big property bubble. The property prices were ridiculously high. When the bubble burst, Japan went through a decade (i.e. 10 years) of almost zero growth. This is called the "Lost Decade".

Singapore today is like Japan during the late 1980s. We are now prosperous because of our high property prices. We stand a high risk that our property bubble will also burst. When that happens, we could faced also a decade of slow growth.

Even if the bubble does not burst, it will remain a burden on the economy. Our cost of doing business and our cost of living is high, due to the high property prices. It will be a burden for businesses and for the people.

The government hopes to keep the property prices at the current level, and let inflation in the future restore the equilibrium. At our low rate of inflation, it may take 20 years to correct the imbalance. This is a very long time.

Sadly, it will be an uncertain and difficult future.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Many of the problems like the housing problem the excessive immigrant worker problem were recognised too late. With superior intellect in both the civil service and the ruling party leadership is this considered acceptable error of judgement? I pray such late recognition of issues that affect the well being of citizens do not happen again. The government must do better in early recognition. On this note I hope we do not suffer like Japan did.

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