In the classic 1977 film Star Wars, old Ben Kenobi tells Darth Vader, “If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.”

For Gerald Wong, this line mirrors how he and his colleagues at Credit Suisse see the Singapore stock market for this year. “The more significantly hit the sector was last year, the stronger the recovery can potentially be,” says Wong, the bank’s head of research for Singapore equities.

With vaccination of the general population underway, Credit Suisse believes that Singapore will potentially be the first country in Asia to be fully vaccinated. With effective control of local infections and significant fiscal support, Singapore’s GDP is seen to grow by 6% this year, which is at the top end of the official forecast of between 4% and 6%. If this growth pace can be achieved, it means the drop suffered in 2020 would have been almost effectively reversed.

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