4 January 2005 - Speech By Mr Khoong Hock Yun, Assistant Chief Executive, Industry, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore At SiTF's Asia Pacific ICT Awards 2004 Celebration Party cum Launch of the APICTA Alumni Network, National Youth Park.
Speech By Mr Khoong Hock Yun, Assistant Chief Executive, Industry, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore At SiTF's Asia Pacific ICT Awards 2004 Celebration Party cum Launch of the APICTA Alumni Network on 04 January 2005, National Youth Park.
Mr Steven Lim, Chairman SiTF,
Mr Anthony Lim, Chairman SEC,
Ladies and Gentlemen.
1. Good evening and a Happy New Year to you. It is a pleasure for me to be here today for this post-APICTA Celebration Party. Congratulations are in order for not just the Team Singapore members who secured two top awards and three merit awards, but for every participant who took up the challenge to pit your innovations and solutions at that prestigious regional forum.
2. I would like to also congratulate SiTF for its dedication to its role as the national co-ordinating body for APICTA. This year, as I understand from SiTF, Singapore secured the largest number of nominations at APICTA. This is an encouraging sign that the IT industry in Singapore is very much abuzz with activity.
3. Tonight I will like to share with you my thoughts on innovation and collaboration.
4. First and foremost, the spirit of innovation is critical to our present and future prosperity as a nation. From the early days of independence, Singapore prospered despite our obvious lack of resources. As "necessity is the mother of all invention", so too did our first generation leaders forge a new development model that brought us prosperity. At an era when countries found solace in closing and protecting their home markets, we broke away from the pack and embraced open market concepts that became our hallmark.
5. So innovation may often be less of copying from others or doing the tried and tested, but taking calculated risks to strike out boldly in new directions, to deliver solutions that respond to real market needs. We can do things the "Singapore Way" because we do have unique needs but are also international in our outlook. We have a capacity to innovate. To innovate, we must be confident with our own ability to do so. If you fear, you will never try. If you do not try, you will never learn deep lessons from failures or taste great success.
6. We are a unique but international market. We are a small market but we are also a good reference market of what is possible in Asia. IDA has been encouraging industry players to use Singapore as a testbed to deploy new technologies. For example, in the area of wireless broadband innovation, IDA has allocated dedicated spectrum bands of trials and commercial deployment of wireless broadband.
7. We have also fostered innovative trials of new ICT solutions through our "Calls for Collaborations" or CFCs. For example, IDA has been catalysing developments in high growth areas such as web services and radio frequency identification (or RFID). For a start, S$9m will be invested to help forty-five companies develop web solutions over the next two years. These companies are expected to generate S$125 million in revenue as a result of their use of web services technology. And for building of RFID capabilities, up to S$10m is set aside to help companies in manufacturing, distribution and retail sectors.
8. The limitation of Singapores relatively small market size means that our efforts to grow the local infocomm industry have to be complemented by a strategy to internationalise. IDA will continue to work closely with industry on initiatives to venture into overseas markets. In 2004, IDA, together with SiTF jointly set up the Singapore Solutions Centre (SSC) in Shanghai. This was an effort to help Singapore companies tap into opportunities in China by collaborating together and clustering their capabilities to offer best-of-breed infocomm solutions. Through this, companies can complement each others' skills and resources to offer a more complete solution to potential customers. Moving ahead, we would like to encourage more of our local companies to contact SiTF to take advantage of the SSC.
9. Innovation and collaboration are powerful ingredients in this increasingly complex and interdependent world. Without innovation, our products and solutions quickly become commodities. The reality of economic competition also does not make it possible for us to be an island to ourselves. No one can produce everything and do well in every aspect. Collaborations and partnerships are the norms of the 21st century.
10. As evidenced by Singapore's participation in APICTA, we have a strong pool of companies with an innovative suite of ICT solutions. I am also glad to note that an APICTA alumni network is being formed. I hope this network will help you find many opportunities to collaborate with each other, and market our solutions beyond our domestic market.
11. In the New Year, IDA looks forward to continuing to engage SiTF and you, to explore avenues for growing our infocomm industry. With that, I will like to bid you a pleasant and enjoyable evening as you celebrate your achievements at APICTA.
12. Thank you.