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Speech by Mr James Kang, Assistant Chief Executive, Government Chief Infomation Office, at the Digital Marketplace Forum

8 December 2011 - Speech by Mr James Kang, Assistant Chief Executive, Government Chief Infomation Office, at the Digital Marketplace Forum, Suntec Room 203

Opening Remarks by Mr James Kang, Assistant Chief Executive, Government Chief Infomation Office, at the Digital Marketplace Forum, on 8 Dec 2011, Thursday, 9AM, Suntec Room 203

Distinguished guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

1. Good morning and a very warm welcome to IDA's 4th Digital Marketplace Forum. This Forum has been a key event for the digital media and entertainment industry in Singapore over the past few years, and will continue to serve three important functions:

  • Firstly, to provide a platform for industry leaders to highlight the latest media ICT trends and growth opportunities;
  • Secondly, to update the industry on IDA's ICT initiatives for the digital media and entertainment industry; and
  • Thirdly, to provide opportunities for companies to exchange experiences and foster collaboration.

Continued Growth and Digitisation of Media Industry

2. I believe many of the attendees here today are digital immigrants who have converted to using digital platforms to perform daily tasks such as reading the news or catching up on missed televisions programmes. With the proliferation of consumer devices such as tablets, connected TVs and smartphones, the demand for digital content and services will continue to increase.

3. To deal with the challenges of digitisation and to leverage the new opportunities created, companies will need to be open in exploring new business models and collaborative partnerships, as well as develop new capabilities. I'd like to share with you three key areas IDA is looking at to help the industry tap into new monetisation opportunities:

First Key Area - Developing Digital Media Enablers

4. The first key area is the development of industry enablers such as infrastructure and skilled manpower to enable the growth of the industry.

5. Infrastructure developments offer a solid foundation to propel the growth of the digital media and entertainment business. The Next Generation Nationwide Broadband Network or Next Gen NBN in short, will connect 95 per cent of all residences and businesses by June 2012. Once completed, Singapore will be the first nation in the world where optical fibre based broadband services can be obtained nationwide. Two other infrastructure components are the Singapore Internet Exchange or SGIX, an open and neutral internet exchange that increases the efficiency of internet traffic and the reach of Singapore users, and the Wireless@SG network that provides free Wi-Fi to the public at more than 7,500 hotspots islandwide.

6. A multi-government agency effort has also brought about Mediapolis@one-north, a 19-hectare innovation facility that will enable media and ICT talents to live, work and play in a synergistic environment. IDA has developed a media ICT blueprint to guide the industry on providing a holistic ICT design which includes a high speed media centric campus-wide network and media ICT enabling services.

7. As companies move towards digitisation of their processes and services, the demand for manpower skilled in these new areas will increase. IDA welcomes the industry to leverage its manpower development programmes, such as the Infocomm Leadership and Development Programme (iLEAD), where companies partner IDA to boost its infocomm manpower capabilities in critical and emerging infocomm areas. One such company that has become an iLEAD partner is Netvizio, which is training local manpower at its R&D centre in Israel to develop expertise in interactive TV application development.

8. To enable the media industry to flourish, IDA also recognises the need for online protection policies to provide a conducive environment for companies to monetise their content. Currently, in consultation with the industry, a multi-government agency effort is in place to study measures to improve online content protection in Singapore.

Second Key Area - Singapore as a Market Connector to Asia

9. The second key area is on Singapore as a market connector to Asia, tapping on its vast growth potential in the media and entertainment space. With its excellent connectivity to all parts of Asia, Singapore will be the location of choice to hub digital content services and to form a good test-bed for services to reach Asia. IDA has a number of in-market facilitation initiatives to help companies in Singapore to expand into the region. I invite you to participate in the breakout session later on "Internationalising from Singapore" to learn more about these initiatives.

Third Key Area - Innovative Digital Content and Services

10. The third key area is the focus on innovative digital content services and new business models to create and sustain competitive advantage in the fast-changing digital media industry. An example of a successful innovative service in Singapore is Viki, which leverages social engagement for multilingual translation, expanding their videos' reach to markets all over the world. Another service is Digitales, which is creating a content aggregation platform that combines elements of entertainment, social media, and analytics to bring about consumer insights into the popularity of celebrities and brands.

Call to Action

11. In line with establishing Singapore as a trusted digital media management and distribution hub for Asia, IDA encourages the hubbing of digital content services and development of innovative digital media solutions in Singapore to reach the region. I would like to take this opportunity to invite companies to submit proposals for innovative digital content services to IDA. More details about our incentive programme can be found in our website, at


12. Finally, I would like to thank all of our invited speakers who have taken their precious time off to present at today's forum. To the participants, I would strongly encourage you to take part in the breakout sessions later in the afternoon to explore opportunities in multi-platform distribution and expansion into the regional markets.

13. I trust that you will enjoy the programme that we have put up for you, and I hope you will have a very rewarding day. Thank you.