This is the first article of a two-part series. Read Part 2 here.
Singapore is recognised as one of the safest countries in the world and has been holding that record for a long time. The nation topped the list for Gallup’s Global Law and Order Index for the year 2019, with an index score of 97 out of a possible 100. The Singapore Government has always been staying on top of all issues concerning the safety and security of the people.
With the ongoing COVID-19 situation, Singapore had shifted its Disease Outbreak Response System Condition (DORSCON) level from yellow to orange on Friday, 7 February. With the nation stepping up efforts to protect its citizens and businesses while fighting the spread of the virus, OpenGov looks to understand the measures taken by government agencies to handle such situations.
OpenGov had the opportunity to sit with Dr Lee Fook Kay, Chief Scientist at the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), to obtain more insights into how MHA is harnessing science and technology (S&T) in viable and innovative ways to ensure that it is at the forefront of safety and security efforts.
Dr Lee was appointed as the first Chief Scientist of MHA in April 2019. Prior to his appointment as Chief Scientist and since 2008, Dr Lee Fook Kay had been the Chief Science and Technology Officer at MHA.
In that role, he steered and led MHA’s development efforts in CBRNE (chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and high-yield explosives), Forensics, Video Analytics, Biometrics, Profiling, Robotics, Automation, Artificial Intelligence and Human Factors, amongst others.
In particular, Dr Lee has had more than twenty years of experience in the CBRNE domain and has been instrumental in the strategic building and development of CBRNE capabilities in Singapore.
Today, he remains a key advisor in the National Advisory Board that oversees the strategic and policy issues in CBRNE. Dr Lee was also appointed as Singapore’s expert member in the IAEA Emergency Preparedness and Response Expert Group (EPREG) from 2012-2015.
Singapore’s technological capabilities for safety and security
Dr Lee strongly believes that the Home Team is well-positioned in terms of its technological readiness and that it has the zest to develop cutting edge technologies, for the Home Team is in the heart of each of its scientists and engineers.
Dr Lee said that one of MHA’s strongest capabilities is its laboratory network within Singapore, which can analyse an entire range of security-sensitive materials (SSM). This includes CBRNE and narcotics. This is particularly useful at Singapore’s border checkpoints, where analyses can be quickly conducted to determine if SSM is being smuggled into the country, during detection of suspicious activities. Dr Lee believes that this capability is the first of its kind in the world.
Importance of taking citizens’ needs into consideration for technology development
Dr Lee noted that technology development efforts, in the safety and security arena, were previously tended to emphasise improvements in systems, over human performance. Besides looking at improving the human operation of machines, it is imperative for the Home Team to go one step further: Taking citizens’ needs into consideration. “We need the citizens, whom we are aiming to protect, to accept the technology serving them and use it,” said Dr Lee.
Dr Lee shared examples of such technologies being currently developed on. A prototype for an automated car clearance system, at the land checkpoints, is being trialled with passenger cars coming through. The user-friendliness and experiences of those going through the checkpoints by car are being assessed as well. An exoskeleton is also being developed for SCDF’s firefighters. A key consideration of this technology is that while it is primarily meant to protect the firefighters wearing it during their line of duty, the exoskeleton should also not inadvertently cause injuries to those whom the firefighters are trying to save.
Regarding the possibility of pushback from citizens on the introduction of new technologies, Dr Lee pointed out that where practical, feedback is collected from the public. For example, when new technologies are being tested at checkpoints, the public trying them out are also interviewed and asked for their feedback on the technologies.
MHA labs countering bioterrorism and virus outbreaks with science and technology
The threats of bioterrorism and virus outbreaks are becoming ever real, such as in the case of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, and countries are stepping up efforts to protect their citizens.
The Home Team CBRNE network of laboratories are located at Singapore’s land and sea checkpoints, to detect and analyse suspicious incoming items into Singapore. The laboratories, therefore, need to be able to detect any items that contain hazardous materials and also be on the lookout for major bioterrorism agents, such as anthrax.
Dr Lee noted that the CBRNE laboratories are well-equipped to receive and process such suspicious items and ensure that any hazardous substances could be detected and contained. He also said that it is critical that the staff receiving these samples are well protected from such hazardous materials. Laboratory officers use gloves with filters, such as chemical filters or hyper filters, as well as filters which have a protective capability against radiation.
Speaking at The Global BioIndia 2021, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu said that India’s biotechnology industry is built on the 4 core beliefs of entrepreneurship, innovation, development of local talent and demonstrating high value-based care. He acknowledged that the field has emerged as the backbone of several areas in recent times. With its strong tech and industrial capabilities, India is in a unique position to transition from the biotech industry to a bio-economy.
The Vice President exhorted upon scientists and researchers to be prepared to combat new and emerging diseases. He stressed the need to leverage the huge potential of the biotechnology sector to create and generate new interventions to address the challenges faced by agriculture and allied sectors. The current pandemic has reinforced the need to be ever vigilant to tackle an outbreak of sudden and unforeseen epidemics and pandemics.
In fact, in large part, the pandemic was a catalyst and accelerator of development in the sector. Major disruptions of supply chains including imports of critical products and raw material further concretised the resolve for the nation to become atmanirbhar (self-reliant).
The Department of Biotechnology deserves recognition for working relentlessly to mitigate the COVID-19-induced crisis through the development of high-tech diagnostics, innovative protection equipment and vaccines. It scaled up production capacity and streamlined regulatory response to ensure the rapid and safe rollout of necessary measures.
With the immense potential the biotech sector presents, the government has eased compliance and approvals for the ecopreneurs. The proactive initiatives have resulted in a multifold impact reflected in the number of innovators, technologies and products, incubation space and IPs generated in the last year.
Citing the attractiveness of India’s value proposition and comparative advantage in the bio-economy, the ‘Make in India’ initiative and Atmanirbhar Bharat ideology will help to achieve the paradigm shift from biotech to bio-economy.
Dr Harsh Vardhan, Minister of Science & Technology, Earth Sciences and Health & Family Welfare, emphasised that the global impact of COVID-19 has brought greater recognition of the biotech sector’s influence on innovation and technology adoption in pharma, medtech, agriculture and allied areas, clean solutions, and industrial bio-manufacturing.
The industry is divided into five major segments: bio-pharma, bio-services, bio-Agri, bio-industrial and bioinformatics. The biotechnology sector in India has been growing at 14.7% year-on-year, with it being evaluated to about US$ 51 bn in 2018. While it may account for only 2% of the global market share, it is 3rd in the Asia Pacific region in terms of the number of companies.
About 40% of these are in the biopharma segment and the rest are in agribiotech, bioinformatics, industrial biotechnology and bioservices. India has the tremendous potential to become a global player in the biotechnology sector because of its cost-effective products and services.
The Global BioIndia 2021 showcased India’s strength in the biotechnology sector. India’s biotech sector has the ambitious target of US$ 100 billion bio-manufacturing hub and becoming a US$ 150 billion industry by 2025.
As the nation strives to become a knowledge- and innovation-driven economy, it is imperative its development is holistic – academia and industry must collaborate. India needs to focus on developing skilled manpower – all stakeholders must actively look at training and upskilling the workforce. In addition, the country must address infrastructure, quality compliance, venture funding and regulatory and IPR issues.
The Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) will launch the SG Cyber Safe Programme to help Singapore enterprises to raise their cybersecurity posture.
The programme is part of the Safer Cyberspace Masterplan launched in October 2020, which aims to raise Singapore’s general level of cybersecurity.
In a speech by Dr Janil Puthucheary, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Communications and Information at the MCI Committee of Supply Debate 2021, he said “Cybersecurity, therefore has to be a collective effort and a core part of our lives in this digital age-integrated into the products we use and the way that we behave online.”
“As more enterprises go digital, our exposure to cyber threats grows in parallel. Cyber attacks on companies have a far-reaching impact on our wider economy. So, as part of the Safer Cyberspace Masterplan, CSA will launch the SG Cyber Safe Programme to support companies in strengthening their cybersecurity.”
The SG Cyber Safe Programme is a concerted effort by the Government to help enterprises better protect themselves in the digital domain. Under this programme, initiatives to be introduced include:
The toolkits, targeted at key enterprise stakeholders such as enterprise leaders, technical teams and employees, will provide leaders with a deeper understanding of cybersecurity issues and threats. It will also enable them to implement cybersecurity measures, including employee training, within the organisation.
CSA will be rolling out the employee cybersecurity toolkit by the end of 2021. For a start, CSA has worked with Smart Nation and Digital Government Group (SNDGG) and Civil Service College (CSC) to adapt existing cybersecurity modules – originally developed for public officers – for employees in the private sector.
Tools for enterprises to self-assess their cybersecurity posture.
This includes the Exercise-in-a-Box Singapore incident response simulation tool, which will be launched in partnership with the United Kingdom’s National Cyber Security Centre in the later half of 2021. CSA will also develop assessment tools on enterprises’ Internet domain, connectivity and email health.
SG Cyber Safe Trustmark.
The Trustmark will serve as a mark of distinction for enterprises that have put in place good cybersecurity measures that correspond to their risk profiles.
CSA will start industry consultations on the SG Cyber Safe Trustmark from April 2021 to seek views on the concept and implementation. CSA intends to introduce the trustmark by early-2022.
As the trustmark is intended for companies or projects with higher cyber risk, a separate cyber hygiene mark will also be developed to complement the SG Cyber Safe trustmark. More details on the trustmark and cyber hygiene mark will be announced in due course.
Building Cybersecurity Talent Base in Singapore
The Minister added that “Our cybersecurity talent base is a key enabler of these efforts and we are working closely with industry partners and Government agencies to nurture and grow our cybersecurity workforce.
He said that first of all, to meet near-term demand, the government will facilitate the training and upskilling of cybersecurity professionals, as well as fresh and mid-career non-cybersecurity professionals for cybersecurity jobs, through programmes such as IMDA’s Tech Skills Accelerator.
And secondly, to strengthen the talent pipeline for the longer term, the government encourages youths to pursue a career in the field through cyber outreach initiatives like SG Cyber Talent. There has been over 7,000 participants to-date.
The government has also launched the SG Cyber Leaders programme to create a community for current and developing cyber leaders to exchange ideas, and learn about global best practices.
The minister called on all Singaporeans to do their part to stay cyber safe. “All of us need to play our part to create a safer, more secure cyberspace. There are things we can do as individuals. We should enable two-factor authentication, update our software in a timely manner, choose a passphrase rather than a password and staying vigilant to spot signs of phishing.”
Leading digital workflow company, ServiceNow, launched the first of its’ global service offerings to Singapore organisations in highly regulated industries – with the Now Platform available on Microsoft Azure.
Singapore customers are among the first in the world to use the Now Platform on Azure, to deliver business-wide transformation, while meeting data residency requirements for how sensitive information is stored, shared, protected and used. The level of digital adoption and market readiness has been a catalyst for ServiceNow’s continued growth and investment in Singapore, supporting the nation’s digital agenda.
ServiceNow Managing Director and Asia Vice President Mr Wee Luen Chia said, “ServiceNow is highly committed to supporting Singapore’s Smart Nation agenda. This announcement is a major milestone in support of this agenda; and is an outcome of regular, open conversations on how to help Singapore organizations leverage digital transformation to deliver smart experiences and improve productivity.”
Country Manager for Singapore Karen Chong said highly-regulated customers won’t be getting a new platform, but rather a new option to scale digital offerings at speed and this has been adopted quickly by leading organisations in Singapore.
Karen said organisations in highly regulated industries can now access the same Now Platform – the platform of platforms – that is already helping so many Singapore customers scale their digital investments and make work better.
“For organisations to embrace this workflow revolution they need to leverage one platform, one data model, to deliver business efficiencies and drive productivity. Integrating software applications at scale means you can reach your business’ transformation goals, faster and without added complexity. ServiceNow offers a platform that connects all your workflow and software applications across customer service, IT, supply chains, ERP, finance, employee and more.”
To help Singapore’s highly-regulated industries better understand this opportunity, Karen shared that ServiceNow has teamed up with various agencies in the public sector.“We work closely with Singapore government authorities by having the Multi-Tier Cloud Security (MTCS) test-ready, we received level 3-certification, the highest in MTCS. We also achieved strict data security compliance in accordance with government regulations and standards to ensure we meet the needs of highly-regulated industries in Singapore.”
“Most organisations considering transformation investments look closely into the availability of physical data infrastructure when investing in technology,” Karen said. “ServiceNow’s investments in local data storage ensures that it can support seamless, secure workflows to meet the breadth of products and services offered by Singapore’s enterprises.”
ServiceNow’s collaboration with Microsoft Azure in Singapore will enable the city state’s public sector to be among the first in the world to take advantage of a potent mix of automation processes, connectivity and seamless experiences to deliver smart, simple ways to work. Several Governments, including GovTech, use ServiceNow’s Now Platform. Also, NCS, a ServiceNow and Microsoft technology partner to Singapore Government and highly regulated industries such as banking, healthcare and transport have a proven track record in digital transformation for government and enterprises.
NCS Managing Director, Global Delivery, Keith Leong said, “With ServiceNow and Microsoft, NCS is able to offer best of breed solutions for our clients to enable them to accelerate the implementation of secure, digital workflow automation, especially for highly regulated organisations that rely on local data residency.”
Healthcare providers can now access a new digital platform that will facilitate the upload of COVID-19 vaccination records to the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR).
The Clinician Vaccine Integrated Platform (CVIP) will support the Australian Government’s COVID-19 vaccination program which started in February. It provides the technology needed for vaccination providers to meet their legislative requirements to report the vaccinations to the AIR.
Agency Chief Digital Officer Steve Issa said, “CVIP is expected to be particularly useful for vaccination providers who don’t currently have digital systems in place to report to the AIR.”
NT Health was the first jurisdiction to start using CVIP in their Alice Springs vaccination clinic. The Agency is having discussions with other jurisdictions about how it might be used at clinics within other states and territories, while they are upgrading their clinical systems to meet the new AIR reporting legislative requirements.
Vaccination information reported to the AIR is uploaded automatically to My Health Record.
The latest upgrade to My Health Record delivered in late February included a consolidated immunisation view so people can easily see details of all immunisations, including their first COVID-19 vaccination, received, and next vaccination due date. Immunisation history statements are also available from Medicare Online and the Express Plus Medicare Mobile app.
There are also two complementary mobile apps, Healthi and HealthNow which can provide people with new ways to understand and use the information in their My Health Record, and ultimately, to make better-informed decisions about staying well or managing their health conditions. Both these apps allow people to easily view My Health Record and their immunisation status.
About the Australian Digital Health Agency
When it comes to improving the health of all Australians, the role of digital innovation and connection is a vital part of a modern, accessible healthcare system. Against the backdrop of COVID-19, digital health has seen exponential growth in relevance and importance, making it more pertinent than ever for all Australians and healthcare providers.
Better patient healthcare and health outcomes are possible when you have a health infrastructure that can be safely accessed, easily used and responsibly shared.
To achieve this, the National Digital Health Strategy is establishing the foundations for a sustainable health system that constantly improves. It underpins and coordinates work that is already happening between governments, healthcare providers, consumers, innovators and the technology industry.
About the National Digital Health Strategy
Digital information is the bedrock of high-quality healthcare. The benefits for patients are significant and compelling: hospital admissions avoided, fewer adverse drug events, reduced duplication of tests, better coordination of care for people with chronic and complex conditions, and better-informed treatment decisions.
To achieve this, the National Digital Health Strategy is establishing the foundations for a sustainable health system that constantly improves. It underpins and coordinates work that is already happening between governments, healthcare providers, consumers, innovators and the technology industry.
The outcomes citizens can expect to see are covered by seven high-level strategic priorities or ‘pillars’ of digital health improvements detailed in the strategy. These outcomes will be delivered to all Australians by 2022, following the Framework for Action implementation plan.
They will form part of a new sustainable ecosystem of digital health technology well into the future. The National Digital Health Strategy was formed after detailed consultations with patients, consumers, carers, healthcare professionals, industry, organisations and innovators. It’s based on evidence of clinical and economic benefits identified from sources both in Australia and overseas.
The Australian Digital Health Agency is the custodian of the strategy, its role being to evolve national digital health capability by innovating, collaborating and leading.
The Ministry of Communications and Information has made building an inclusive digital society one of their main priorities for 2021. Their aim is to ensure that ‘all Singaporeans can reap the benefits of digitalisation.’
In order to reach this goal, the National Library Board (NLB) is transforming libraries into hubs for digital learning.
The Libraries and Archives Blueprint 2025 (LAB25) looks at how NLB’s roles and priorities will evolve from 2021 to 2025, in response to social, economic and technological changes.
‘A key component of LAB25 is working with communities, individuals and industries to innovate and explore new solutions to address the needs of citizens.’
Since January 2020, NLB has carried out various types of public consultations to understand what Singaporeans would like to see in their libraries and archives.
The National Library Board has identified five areas to focus on:
Champion lifelong learning
NLB will prepare its patrons for a fast-changing world through programmes such as on career and personal development. These include the Future of Work series and the My Digital Life series, which promote public awareness of how technology affects our life.
NLB has also revamped its library makerspaces in 2020, with a rebrand from PIXEL Labs@NLB to MakeIT at Libraries, to reflect the need to shift Singapore’s DIY and innovation culture into the next gear. There are three makerspaces which comprise activities such as hands-on workshops in 3D printing and robotics, jointly organised by NLB and the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA).
Bridge the digital divide
NLB will continue to partner IMDA and other government agencies to help communities, especially our seniors, to be comfortable and confident when using digital services and technology. For example, Library Learning Journeys will be conducted monthly at 25 public libraries from late February 2021, with capacity of four participants for each session. Led by digital ambassadors, these sessions teach seniors how to use the NLB mobile app and other digital services in libraries, such as connecting to Wireless@SGx, accessing eNewspapers and scanning QR codes.
Document and tell Singapore stories
NLB will continue to involve the community in its efforts to build the nation’s contemporary collection and collect its history. An ongoing “Documenting COVID-19” collection drive organised by NLB and the National Museum of Singapore has so far received over 740 submissions of more than 3,600 photos, personal stories, videos, ephemera, webpages, blog, diaries and creative responses.
NLB has also recorded 61 in-depth audio interviews as part of the oral history component of Documenting COVID-19. NLB aims to record at least 120 interviews from now until 2022. The public will be able to access them on the Archives Online website.
Strengthen citizen engagement
The NLB will continue to step up efforts to ensure that libraries are safe and inclusive spaces for the community to interact with one another. Communities are encouraged to pursue their passion in learning through setting up their own interest groups and reading clubs at the various libraries, where they can interact with like-minded people from all walks of life.
Promote information literacy
NLB has been actively promoting information literacy through the Source. Understand. Research. Evaluate. (S.U.R.E.) campaign, which promotes the importance of information evaluation and discernment. Over 25,000 participants have benefited from S.U.R.E. programmes in the last three years, with increased interest during COVID 19.
In the coming years, NLB will step up its efforts on S.U.R.E. and will weave the campaign into programmes across interest areas, such as combining a love of reading with being wise consumers of information at NLB’s Read Fest 2021.
Revamping libraries – part of Libraries of the Future Masterplan
In line with the Libraries of the Future Masterplan, NLB will continue to develop public libraries with seamless access, both physically and digitally. Since 2015, six revamped public libraries have been launched. The revamped Choa Chu Kang Public Library will reopen in the second half of 2021.
Choa Chu Kang Public Library will be the first Libraries of the Future library to be redesigned with sustainability as its main theme, and will feature digital services which aim to encourage the appreciation of natural landscapes and biodiversity.
In Singapore, service-providing apps are prominent and contribute to a large amount of the country’s market share. That amount will continue to grow as a multi-million-dollar app will soon be launched in the country to help users find their way around, call a taxi, make reservations at restaurants and even book staycations, all on one free platform.
The new tech venture by a transport giant is a one-stop app that melds transport, food, and leisure services, as the company goes head-to-head with competition such as ride-hailing firms. While the developer’s core business remains transportation services, the app is part of the company’s pivot to offering more online services, drawing from its S$100 million venture capital fund to aid in its digitalisation efforts.
The company’s managing director and group chief executive officer said the project is the first time the land transport company is rolling out such an all-in-one lifestyle and mobility app. In a digital world, mobility is no longer just about simply transporting people from point A to B. It is about bringing services to people wherever they are, whenever they need, he added.
The app provides an interactive map-based interface that shows both nearby attractions and functions as a navigation tool, giving locals – and tourists – an avenue to discover little-known parts of Singapore. By partnering with restaurant-booking platforms, it also allows users to pre-order food and drinks from their pick of more than 1,500 restaurants and cafes for quick collection. The company also partnered with an international travel agency, adding hotel booking options and entertainment deals to the platform, including more offbeat and recreational experiences.
With the demand for taxi rides still below pre-Covid-19 levels, the app aims to give the company’s cabbies a boost by drawing a wider lifestyle user base and offering them an in-app taxi booking function. This is in addition to the existing booking app of the company, which will continue to operate.
Moreover, the company said that as more users are onboarded, more innovative services will be rolled out. While there are no plans yet to offer food delivery, a very possible prospect is the inclusion of hawker stalls, cinemas, and supermarkets on the app.
Also, local marketing executives say the app could bring about greater visibility for restaurants. They think the app will bring about great brand awareness and it is good that the platform targets public transport commuters, taxi riders and has geolocation features, which has become a norm for most app-based service providers.
Meanwhile, educators from the National University of Singapore Business School said that the app is a “natural evolution” for the company, which already has a ready pool of drivers. For him, the super app market is not oversaturated. The country is just scratching at the surface and there is still room for improvement. Every company will come onto the field with a different synergy, a different set of a starting point and different value propositions.
In contrast, educators at the Singapore Polytechnic School of Business, believe it will be hard for the company to differentiate its offerings from other platforms, as Singapore’s market is too small, and to affect a platform shift, they will have to pump in as many dollars as possible to gain market share. They further added that the platform that can integrate all its services on one platform most seamlessly will emerge on top. It is about offering a particular lifestyle, and it must all be interconnected.
Accordingly, as reported by OpenGov Asia, the country’s Department of Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat allocated over S$24 billion over the next three years to help mature enterprises ranging from micro to large firms, to invest in new and emerging technologies to sharpen their competitiveness. The government is looking to catalyse a wide range of capital to co-fund and enable businesses to innovate, transform and scale.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and The Association of Banks in Singapore (ABS) jointly issued a paper on managing new risks that could emerge from extensive remote working arrangements adopted by financial institutions (FIs) amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The paper “Risk Management and Operational Resilience in a Remote Working Environment” highlights that, in view of the protracted remote working arrangements and the likely adoption of hybrid working arrangements in the future, it is important that FIs remain vigilant towards remote working risks and take pre-emptive steps to mitigate them.
The aim of the paper is to:
• raise awareness of key remote working risks in the financial sector;
• share good practices adopted by FIs to mitigate key remote working risks; and
• encourage all FIs to adopt good practices on managing remote working risks.
The Paper looks at possible risks to FIs in the areas of operations, technology and information security, fraud and staff misconduct, and legal and regulatory risks. It also examines the impact on people and culture that may be brought about by remote working.
Mr Ong Chong Tee, Deputy Managing Director (Financial Supervision), MAS, said, “Financial institutions in Singapore have swiftly adapted to remote working and split-team arrangements in response to COVID-19. The operational resilience of our financial institutions during this period reflects the soundness of their business continuity management plans. It also underscores the importance of regular tests through internal drills and industry-wide exercises jointly organised by the MAS and the financial industry.
“Investments in the digitalisation of work processes and services over the past five years have also enabled our financial institutions to continue to provide a high level of support to meet the needs of individuals and businesses, during the pandemic. MAS will continue to work closely with ABS and other industry associations to enhance operational resilience and maintain high service standards.”
Drawing from the experiences of ABS member banks, the Paper suggests key risk management actions needed to address these areas of concern. The risks and risk mitigation measures set out in the Paper are also applicable to non-bank FIs.
MAS encourages FIs to benchmark their remote working controls against the examples in the Paper. FIs should also continually review and enhance their risk management practices to address evolving risks. This Paper is part of the ongoing collaboration between
MAS and ABS’ Return to Onsite Operations Taskforce (ROOT), to coordinate responses to the crisis and prepare for a post-COVID-19 new normal.
Mr Samuel Tsien, Chairman of ABS, said, “Over the years, banks have invested consistently and significantly in risk management and technology. The investments have enabled the industry to quickly and effectively respond to the COVID-19 outbreak and ensure that banking services are not disrupted during the crisis. Where their roles permitted, banks have made arrangements to facilitate their employees to work from home in a safe and secured environment and allowed the continued provision of services that our customers needed. This outcome is not only due to individual banks’ efforts. It was also a collective one.”
“ABS and ROOT, working together with MAS, coordinated the financial sector’s response to the crisis. The good practices are now captured in this Paper. It will serve as a valuable reference guide to all banks as remote and flexible work arrangements continue to be adopted as the pandemic evolves. The Paper is also a good guide to banks when dealing with other types of crises”.