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Singapore Refreshes I&C Industry Transformation Map

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Lawrence Wong, Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore unveiled the refreshed Information & Communications (I&C) Industry Transformation Map (ITM) at the recently held Singapore Computer Society’s 55th Anniversary Gala Dinner and Tech Leader Awards 2023.

The updated I&C ITM, which was created by Digital Industry Singapore (DISG), will build on the success of the previous ITM. It seeks to build a robust I&C sector to fuel the expansion of the Digital Economy and bolster Singapore’s standing as a centre for leading tech companies and talent.

The scope of the revised ITM will be narrowed to concentrate on the I&C sector, which includes software, IT services, online services, and telcos. The number of well-paying I&C roles is projected to increase to 80,000 by 2025, creating excellent opportunities for Singapore and its citizens.

As Southeast Asia presents a tremendous growth opportunity, I&C firms will increasingly turn to Singapore to tap the region’s potential. To accomplish this, the government will continue to facilitate cross-border collaboration in the following ways:

  • Expanding the network of Digital Economy Agreements (DEA) to encourage cross-border data flows, establish data standards, and foster other forms of digital collaboration;
  • Enhancing digital integration and connectivity in Southeast Asia by leveraging existing efforts to advance the ASEAN Digital Framework Agreement; and
  • Utilising flagship events such as Asia Tech x Singapore (ATxSG) and the Singapore International Cyber Week (SICW) to convene global leaders and decision-makers in Singapore to promote collaboration through innovation and standards development.

The government also recognises the significance of investing in the domestic connectivity infrastructure to allow the I&C industry to attain its full potential. This includes investing in 5G networks that will power the next iteration of digital products and services and expanding the subsea cable network.

DISG will implement a variety of enterprise development strategies to assist companies in capitalising on sector growth opportunities. The Government will continue to invest in critical enabling technologies to maintain Singapore’s competitiveness as a digital hub. Singapore will carve out a niche in cybersecurity and trust technologies by building on its capabilities in artificial intelligence (AI) and future communications.

To ensure that Singaporeans benefit from the expansion of the Digital Economy, upskilling initiatives remain a key focus of the revised ITM. Continuing Education and Training (CET) initiatives facilitate mid-career transitions and assist current employees in remaining relevant. These initiatives include:

  • Widespread digital skills upskilling in accordance with industry digital plans, and leveraging TechSkills Accelerator (TeSA) programmes;
  • Educating locals with specialised skills for in-demand tech positions at local businesses; and
  • Assisting current employers in preparing their employees for disruption via the I&C Jobs Transformation Map, which identifies occupations at risk and emerging technological trends.

Further, Pre-Employment Training (PET) contributes to the development of tech talent and enables more Singaporeans to access industry opportunities. In the past five years, enrollment in Information & Digital Technologies (IDT) courses at universities, polytechnics, and ITE has increased by nearly a third.

Industry stakeholders and institutions of higher education (IHLs) must collaborate to co-design and co-deliver curricula to perpetually upskill students and graduates so that they are industry-ready in a rapidly evolving technology landscape.

In conjunction with CET and PET initiatives, the Government will prioritise the development of a strong core of Singaporean technology executives.

DISG will concentrate on the attractiveness and competitiveness of the business ecosystem to globally competitive I&C firms eager to capitalise on Asia’s development. DISG is excited to collaborate with industry players, IHLs, and trade associations to strengthen partnerships and promote the long-term growth of the I&C sector and the broader digital economy.

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