Basic Facts:

Government: Parlimentary Republic

GDP: 235.7 billion (2009 est.)

GDP Composition: 0% agriculture, 27.6% industry, 72.4% services (2009 est.)

GDP Growth rate: -2.1% (2009 est.)

Budget Revenues: $ 21.29 billion

Budget Expenditures: $ 24.14 billion

Industry Product: electronics, chemicals, financial services, oil drilling equipment[1]

Brief overview

In 2007, Singapore total primary energy supply was 23,701 kilotonnes of oil equivalent (ktoe). Singapore relies on imports to meet most of its domestic energy needs. In 2007, the economy imported 51 246 ktoe of crude oil and 60 479 ktoe of petroleum products. Crude oil refined in Singapore oil refineries produced 48 198 ktoe of petroleum products in 2007, of which 74.9% was for exports and international bunkers; the balance was for domestic consumption. Natural gas supply grew by 5.5% in 2006, to 5960 ktoe (a lower rate of increase than the 7.9% in 2005). Oil supply declined by 1.45% in 2006 to 17,637 ktoe; by comparison, oil supply increased by 1.91% in 2005.

Singapore has no domestic oil reserves, so, the natural gas has become the major fuel used for electricity generation in Singapore. Four offshore natural gas pipelines supply Singapore natural gas needs. The first gas pipeline, located in the northern part of the main island, was commissioned in 1991; it supplies 150 million standard cubic feet per day (MMscf/D) of natural gas from Malaysia. Senoko Power imports the gas from Malaysia for use in its own power generation plant. Since January 2001, the second pipeline, from the West Natuna gas field in Indonesia, has supplied 325 MMscf/D of natural gas to customers. Large customers use about 98% of the gas supplied. Sembcorp Gas (SembGas) was the importer, transporter and retailer of gas from the West Natuna field until the new gas industry framework required it to transfer its onshore natural gas pipeline assets to PowerGas and to exit the gas transportation business. The third pipeline, from South Sumatra, Indonesia, started supplying gas to Singapore in September 2003. It supplies 350 MMscf/D of natural gas for power generation and industry use. The fourth pipeline from Malaysia, which commenced operation in 2007, supplies 110 MMscf/D and is also mainly for power generation. Keppel Gas Pte Ltd is the importer for the natural gas from the fourth pipeline. Gas Supply Pte Ltd is the importer of the gas from South Sumatra, which is retailed by Gas Supply and City Gas. Both Gas Supply and City Gas engage the services of PowerGas for gas transportation.

The interagency Energy Policy Group, chaired by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, has developed an energy policy framework that strives to maintain a balance between the policy objectives of economic competitiveness, energy security and environmental sustainability. To meet its energy policy objectives, Singapore focuses on five key strategies (MTI 2007).

Strategy 1: Promote competitive markets.

Strategy 2: Diversify energy supplies.

Strategy 3: Improve energy efficiency.

Strategy 4: Build energy industry and invest in energy R&D.

Strategy 5: Step up international cooperation.

Singapore first restructured the energy sector with the corporatisation of the electricity and gas industries as vertically integrated companies, starting in 1995. In 2000, the government undertook further reforms. It separated the natural monopoly or non-contestable part of the electricity market (that is, the electricity transmission and distribution grid) from the competitive or contestable parts (that is, power generation and retail) of Singapore Power Ltd. The electricity grid “PowerGrid Ltd and Power Supply Ltd” would remain under Singapore Power Ltd, while the power generation companies Senoko Power Ltd and PowerSeraya Ltd would compete with one another and with other power generation companies in Singapore. The government also established an independent power system operator and liberalised the electricity retail market. In June 2007, Temasek Holdings (Temasek) confirmed its plan to divest all three of its wholly owned Singapore power generation companies PowerSeraya, Senoko Power and Tuas Power over the following 12 to 18 months. The sale was reportedly made with due consideration of amendments to the Gas Act by the Singapore Parliament and completion of a regulatory framework governing the competitive wholesale supply of gas and power. Divestment of the three gencos was considered the next step towards liberalisation of Singapore electricity market.[2]

Singapore also a major refining center for Southeast Asia, with refining capacity of nearly double its rate of petroleum products consumption. It also is located strategically near the Strait of Malacca, a major route for oil tankers. Recognizing that Singapore future growth depends on overcoming energy resource limitations and a small domestic market, the government of Singapore has vigorously encouraged local firms to regionalize their operations and to invest abroad. The government also has undertaken efforts to attract additional foreign investors to Singapore. Singapore Petroleum Company Ltd. (SPC), which has been publicly traded on the Singapore Stock Exchange since October 1990, currently holds a 20 percent participating interest in Blocks 102 and 106, located offshore in the Song Hong Basin in the Gulf of Tonkin, Vietnam. SPC owns a 36 percent working interest in the Sampang PSC, located offshore East Java, Indonesia. Also in Indonesia, SPC owns a 15 percent equity stake in the Kakap PSC, an oil and gas producing asset located offshore Indonesia in the West Natuna Sea. In August 2005, SPC entered into an agreement with the government of Cambodia for a 30 percent interest in the Block B Petroleum Agreement in the Gulf of Thailand. The country three refineries are ExxonMobil’s Jurong/Pulau Ayer Chawan 605,000-bbl/d facility; Royal Dutch Shell’s Pulau Bukom 458,000-bbl/d complex; and the Singapore Petroleum Company Pulau Merlimau 273,600-bbl/d refinery. Because of Singapore strategic location at the crossroads of the Indian and Pacific Oceans, its deep-water berths, and well-established infrastructure including oil refineries and storage terminals, the country has become an important oil trading and refining hub.

Government body

National Company

Singapore Petroleum Company Ltd. (SPC)

External Company

Exxon, Shell

Current Condition

No. Category Production


Country Revenue
1. Oil 8,553 bbl/day (2008 est.) 934.000 bbl/day (2008 est.)
2. Gas 8.27 billion cu m (2008 est.)
3. Coal
4. Minerals

[1] CIA Worldfacts

[2] Asia Pacific Energy Research Centre (APREC) and The Institute of Energy Economics Japan, APEC Energy Overview 2009, March 2010, p. 169-173