Speech by Mr Gan Kim Yong, Minister for Trade and Industry, at the Launch of Industry Connect Office @ Jurong Innovation District
Ladies and Gentlemen,
- A very good afternoon. I am pleased to join you today at the official launch of JTC’s Industry Connect Office @ Jurong Innovation District.
- Manufacturing is an important sector for Singapore. It contributes to around 20% of our GDP, and offers good job outcomes: in 2020, the sector alone employed 450,000 people, and offered a median wage higher than the national median wage. Manufacturing has also been resilient. In 2020, while Singapore’s real GDP declined by 5.4%, the manufacturing sector grew by 7.3%. Manufacturing also helps to generate greater economic activity as investors branch out to undertake R&D and HQ activities such as supply chain management here in Singapore.
- MTI announced the Manufacturing 2030 vision earlier this year. Our vision is for Singapore to be a global business, innovation, and talent hub for Advanced Manufacturing. We intend to focus on Advanced Manufacturing segments, which have high growth potential, good employment outcomes, plays to our comparative advantages, and which will entrench us in global value chains.
- Central to our Manufacturing 2030 vision is the Jurong Innovation District, which brings together researchers, technology partners and factories of the future. By agglomerating all the stakeholders in one place, JID fosters a spirit of collaboration, and builds an ecosystem in which the best ideas are brought to fruition through an all-hands-on-deck approach.
- JTC’s Industry Connect Office @ JID is the newest addition to this ecosystem. Last year, JTC launched the Industry Connect initiative to accelerate technology adoption and talent development by connecting companies, especially Small and Medium enterprises (SMEs), to solutions providers, trade associations and government agencies.
- I am heartened to hear that the programmes have been well-received and have created many opportunities for our businesses to embark on transformation and upskill their workers.
- For example, through JTC’s introduction, Flo-line Hydraulics, a homegrown SME that provides high quality mobile and industrial hydraulic components, together with Workforce Singapore (WSG) and the Singapore Business Federation (SBF), conducted a trial integration of IoT devices into their manufacturing process under the Industry 4.0 Human Capital Initiative (IHCI). The introduction of real-time analytics has maximised production and provided a more accurate analysis of machine performance. Overall, this initiative has helped the company to increase productivity by up to 30%. The programme also helped to identify areas to digitalise, jobs to be re-designed, and opportunities to upskill staff to stay relevant as well as improve business performance.
- Today’s launch of the Industry Connect Office signifies an important milestone in our Industry 4.0 transformation journey. With this office, companies will be able to have access to one-stop assistance to start, scale and sustain their Industry 4.0 transformation. Over the next three years, 1,000 companies are expected to learn more on Industry 4.0 through sharing sessions and seminars facilitated by the Industry Connect Office. 300 of them are expected to tap on diagnostic, consultancy, and training services to develop new capabilities and upskill their workforce. Building on this momentum, we are also deepening our Industry 4.0 partnerships with industry players to enhance the sector’s competitiveness and help companies stay ahead of the curve.
- Today, I am pleased to announce several initiatives that will be established alongside the Industry Connect Office. First, JTC, together with Advanced Manufacturing Training Academy (AMTA), will be launching a new Industry Transformation Initiative to provide consultancy and advisory services on Industry 4.0 skills and training at the new Industry Connect Office. This initiative will match companies with technology and training partners to identify suitable technology, solutions, and training programmes for Industry 4.0 deployment. Singaporeans can look forward to being re-skilled for better career and progression opportunities in manufacturing.
- At the same time, we recognise that many manufacturers are also keen to adopt sustainable manufacturing practices as part of their business transformation. I am therefore also excited to announce that McKinsey and Company will be launching a new Center of Excellence for Sustainability here in Singapore. This marks a significant expansion for the company in Asia, and Singapore is set to house its regional headquarters. McKinsey will work with businesses to help drive sustainable manufacturing and decarbonisation transformation, in Singapore and across the region.
- Let me conclude by thanking our companies for coming together to share your experiences, build new partnerships, and strengthen existing ones. With these initiatives, I hope more companies will step forward and embark on business transformation journeys.
- I would also like to take the opportunity to encourage more companies to tap on the JID ecosystem for advanced manufacturing solutioning and capability development. Together, we can harness new opportunities for the advanced manufacturing sector in Singapore and beyond.
- Thank you.