Singapore has escaped the worst of essential item shortages due to COVID-19 panic buying, according to a new report from global comparison site Finder.com.
Finder’s study of seven countries reveals that Singapore was the least likely to experience shortages of essential items like hand sanitiser, soap, fresh food, dry food, medicine, toilet paper, or other toiletries.
This is despite one in three Singaporeans, or an estimated 1.65 million people, reporting that they were unable to buy necessities.
The survey of 1,206 Singaporean adults reveals that people have been most likely to miss out on hand sanitiser, with 15% reporting that they have been unable to buy some in the past month.
Fresh food and toilet paper were also hard to come by, with 13% and 12% of respondents disclosing that they couldn’t purchase these items, respectively.
Of the countries surveyed, the Philippines faced the worst shortages, with the majority of Filipinos (58%) saying that they couldn’t purchase an essential item.
The United States and South Africa were not far behind, with 56% stating that they couldn’t purchase an item they needed.
Canada (54%), Ireland (47%), and Hong Kong (43%) also saw high volumes of shortages.
Global editor in chief at Finder, Angus Kidman, noted that it is useful for Singaporeans to see how their experience compares on a global scale.
“Despite one in three Singaporeans facing essential item shortages last month, this is the smallest percentage we saw of the seven countries surveyed,” said Mr Kidman.
“This bodes well for people’s future shopping experiences in Singapore should we experience a prolonged shutdown period, or a cycle of lockdowns that stop and start,” he added.
Read the full report here.