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Singapore Government to spend $3.5 billion on ICT procurement in 2020

The Singapore Government will increase spending to help accelerate digitalisation as technology proves to be increasingly important in enabling citizens and workers to resume normal activities, and businesses to reopen safely after the COVID-19 Circuit Breaker.

The Government will spend an estimated $3.5 billion on ICT procurement in Financial Year 2020, an increase of 30 per cent from FY2019’s projected spend of $2.7 billion in order to boost the economy and support businesses recovering from COVID-19.

The projected Government ICT expenditure will be in five key focus areas: development of new tech tools to respond to COVID-19; development of citizen and business-centric digital services; development of ICT systems on cloud; modernisation of government ICT infrastructure; and use of data analytics, artificial intelligence and sensors within the public sector.

The projected FY2020 procurement spending will include ICT projects that have been brought forward by agencies because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Government Investment in ICT support COVID-19 Solutions

The Government’s investment in digitalisation has not just led to the delivery of citizen- and business-centric digital services; but was instrumental in the Government’s technological response to COVID-19.

Examples include how GovTech engineers were able to quickly build the TraceTogether digital application for contact tracing, roll out SafeEntry as the National Digital Check-in System, as well as launch the MaskGoWhere and SupportGoWhere websites to help citizens find their designated location points for mask collection and COVID-related government support centres.

GovTech engineers also developed several AI-based temperature scanning solutions – such as VigilantGantry and SPOTON – for government buildings and community facilities.

COVID-19 has accelerated the push for digitalisation within the public and private sectors. For the financial year 2020, the Government will continue to invest heavily in technology to push for digitalisation at a whole-of-nation level.

This includes the development and delivery of key Strategic National Projects such as the National Digital Identity (NDI) and Moments of Life (MOL) for citizens and businesses.

As well as the continual migration of eligible ICT systems onto commercial cloud as part of the five-year (2018-2023) Government on Commercial Cloud initiative, the modernisation of ICT infrastructure to empower public officers under the Digital Workplace Programme and developing more applications and uses within Government and across the industry for AI and sensors.

More opportunities for SMEs to participate in Government ICT procurement

Small and medium-sized enterprises will be eligible to participate in 80 per cent of the new proposed procurement opportunities.

In FY2019, SMEs were awarded nearly 70 per cent of the total ICT contracts. GovTech has continued to work with the Ministry of Finance to streamline and introduce new procurement methods to improve SMEs’ access to Government ICT procurement opportunities. These include incorporating more bulk tenders and dynamic contracting to shorten the ICT procurement process.

Mr Kok Ping Soon, Chief Executive, GovTech, said: “COVID-19 has illustrated the importance of digitalisation, and the need to accelerate it within and beyond the public sector. We hope that businesses, especially the SMEs, will benefit from the larger pool and higher value of ICT procurement opportunities, work with us to build a Smart Nation and Digital Government, and emerge stronger from this crisis together.”

For FY2020, the Government will put up bulk tenders for services such as User Experience Design, Agile Development, Application Development, Data Science and AI, among others. With a projected value of $1.2 billion, these Bulk Tenders will broaden the opportunities for SMEs to participate in and win ICT contracts with government agencies.

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