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SICC EVENT

SICC Foreign Diplomat Series: Her Excellency Hazel Ngubeni, High Commissioner of the Republic of South Africa

3 April 2014

Sheraton Towers Singapore

HCForeignDiplomat

It was with much pleasure that SICC invited H.E. Hazel Ngubeni, High Commissioner of the Republic of South Africa, to speak at our first Foreign Diplomat Series event for the year. This series features ambassadors and high commissioners who speak on business issues and investment opportunities in their respective countries.

High Commissioner Ngubeni gave a very clear overview of the diverse business opportunities available to entrepreneurs and investors across South Africa’s nine provinces. The High Commissioner highlighted the challenges which investors will face and shared how these could be overcome by applying practical social responsibility measures. Members very much appreciated High Commissioner Ngubeni’s candour and engaging personality. SICC will continue to organise events with members of the diplomatic corps so that members can gain in-depth knowledge and a better understanding of investment opportunities abroad.


SICC EVENT

SICC CEO Conversation Series with Mr Tan Chuan-Jin Acting Minister for Manpower

28 March 2014
Pan Pacific Singapore, Ocean 5, Level 2

TanChuan-Jin28March2014LeftTanChuan-Jin28March2014

On 28 March 2014, we invited Acting Minister for Manpower Mr Tan Chuan-Jin for a dialogue session with our members to discuss the government’s manpower policies. More than 30 C-suite members attended the event to hear first-hand from the Minister, and shared with him the challenges they face in talent attraction and retention, especially in a tight labour market. They also shared their concerns about the current manpower policies and, in particular, the quotas for foreign workers.

On his part, the Acting Minister reiterated that Singapore will always remain open to businesses. He explained the government’s need to moderate the inflow of foreign labour as part of Singapore’s economic restructuring towards more productivity-led and manpower-lean growth. He encouraged businesses to constantly innovate and be more productive.

The key conclusion from this event is that businesses are encouraged to provide feedback about the challenges they face, the skills they feel the workforce is lacking, and the issues they experience in talent development and retention. This will help identify potential areas to be addressed and, drive more meaningful courses and development programmes to train employees.

The Minister’s openness is very much appreciated by the Chamber and its members.

 

 

 

SICC EVENT

 

SICC Distinguished Speaker Series with Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong
12 March 2014
Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre

 

 GCT-Distinguish

 

The Chamber was singularly honoured by ESM Goh Chok Tong’s acceptance of its invitation to speak to members. 30 C-Suite members attended this closed-door dialogue session. The Chamber deliberately keeps the number of attendees small at these signature events to facilitate a more informal and more in-depth dialogue. 

 

Members appreciated ESM Goh’s insights on a broad spectrum of topical issues and his lively and engaging style. The issues raised ranged from geo-political developments such as the implications of the ASEAN Economic Community and China’s development to the region, to domestic challenges confronting Singapore such as managing rising business costs, the foreign manpower question, how to spur continuous business innovation and to remain competitive were discussed. ESM Goh also spent some time mingling with members after the end of the dialogue session which was both enjoyed and appreciated.

 


 

 SICC EVENT

 


Post-Budget Breakfast Briefing 2014
 

 

Wednesday, 5 March 2014 

 

Sheraton Towers

 

Post-Budget 5 Mar

 

The Chamber’s annual joint event with The Iyer Practice was held at Sheraton Towers Hotel on 5 March. This event was attended by 45 members and clients representing over 18 industries.

 

We were very lucky to have two expert speakers. Mr Kit Wei Zheng, Director, Asia Pacific Economic and Market Analysis for Citibank gave us the macro perspective of the budget in its political context. His very lively and engaging presentation was followed by an equally impressive and insightful presentation by Mr Shanker Iyer, Chairman of The Iyer Practice. Mr Iyer focussed on the key budget measures. He explained how these address the government’s aim of quality growth driven by innovation and greater productivity. The fact that there was no increase in corporate tax was business friendly.  

 


 

SICC EVENT

 

SCCIOB conducts a briefing session on ETS Scheme and APEX Programme

 

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

 

SICC Board Room

 

  

 

SCCIOB - For uploading

 

In a piece of win-win collaboration the Singapore Chinese Chamber Institute of Business (SCCIOB) conducted a briefing for SICC members on the ETS Scheme and APEX Programme.

 

SCCIOB representatives Mr Justin Lee and Ms Cleo Goh gave informative presentations on WDA’s Enterprise Training Support (ETS) Scheme and the Aspiring Productivity Excellence (APEX) programme respectively. The latter programme is designed to help companies identify and train their own in-house productivity managers. SCCIOB also invited Mr Toh Ming Hon from the Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (A*Star) to talk about the importance of enhancing efficiency and productivity in an organisation.

 


 

  

 

MEDIA STATEMENT FROM

 

SINGAPORE INTERNATIONAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

 

ON SINGAPORE BUDGET 2014

 

Singapore, 21 February 2014

 

The Singapore International Chamber of Commerce (SICC) is impressed with Budget 2014’s focus on quality growth and the continued steps to enhance social mobility and inclusiveness.

 

It is no surprise that the government is forging ahead by enhancing measures to encourage increased productivity, innovation and the internationalisation of Singapore companies. This is a necessity for Singapore companies to remain competitive. SICC welcomes the extension of the Productivity and Innovation Credit (PIC) scheme for another three years.

 

SICC agrees with the DPM and Minister for Finance’s comment that productivity is not just about dollars and cents.  It is about changing mindsets sector by sector, discarding outdated practices and innovating for a sustainable future.

 

However, as recent pre-budget surveys have shown, companies continue to struggle with higher business costs and a shortage of manpower. These lead to inflationary pressures which need to be carefully monitored.

 

On the question of manpower, SICC still believes that sector specific calibration of the manpower policy will help companies progress in their productivity journey.

 

For Media Enquiries, please contact:

 

Ms Reavathi Sinnathamby

 

Senior Manager, Communications & Events

 

Tel: 6500 0966

 

Email: reavathi@sicc.com.sg

 


 

SICC PRE-BUDGET EVENT

 

21 January 2014

 

SICC Boardroom

 

TaxBriefing

 

Our guest speaker was Mr Shanker Iyer, Founder and Chairman of Iyer Practice. He  gave a quick overview of the key measures of last year’s budget before talking about SICC Members’ Budget Wishlist for 2014.

 

The event ended with a Q&A session and discussion on what might be expected in the 2014 Budget which will be announced on 21 February 2014.

 

Join us for our annual post-budget event on 5 March 2014 at which Mr Iyer and Mr Kit Wei Zheng, Economist with Citibank will provide perspective and comment on the key measures announced in this year’s budget. Full details of the event can be found on our web site.

 


 

SICC MEMBERS' NETWORKING NIGHT

 

16 January 2014

 

Conrad Centennial Singapore

 

 

The first Members’ Networking Night of the year was held on Thursday, 16 January 2014 at Conrad Centennial hotel. The networking sessions continue to be a draw. This time 47 members from 12 industries enjoyed meeting over good food from the Conrad and wines sponsored by Certain Cellars.

 

SICC’s Facebook team also went around distributing little cards with the URL to members and encouraged them to ‘Like’ the SICC Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/SICCSG .

 

Participation at our events is open to all employees of a member company. Please contact us at events@sicc.com.sg if you are interested to find out more on the Chamber’s events and sponsorship opportunities.

 


 

SICC – MOM Briefing on the Fair Consideration Framework, 14 January 2014

 

SICC was pleased to organise this session to facilitate the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) efforts to educate employers on the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) and, in particular, the new jobs bank to be launched in mid 2014. Over 70 members participated.

 

mom14Jan

 

The new jobs bank will be administered by the Workforce Development Agency (WDA) and will enable employers to access a large pool of Singaporean candidates. The jobs bank will also help the government to identify skills shortages among Singaporeans and facilitate the creation of national education and training programmes.

 

The key takeaways from the session include:

 

  1. Employers are required to post job advertisements for 14 days on the new jobs bank for all jobs that would need a fresh employment pass (EP) application. No fees will be charged for advertising on the jobs bank.
  2. As a public website, information on the new jobs bank can be viewed by all its visitors. However, some features of the new job portal will be restricted to locals only, which include: 

    a) Upload their resumes or be guided to create a resume 

    b) Respond and apply to job advertisements online within the portal 

    c) Shortlist suitable job advertisements, track job application status. While there is no requirement for firms to retain interview and job offer records, it will be in the interest of the firms to do so to support their practices, if there are complaints of discriminatory hiring.

  3. While there is no requirement for firms to retain interview and job offer records, it will be in the interest of the firms to do so to support their practices, if there are complaints of discriminatory hiring.

 

SICC is pleased that MOM will take its members’ suggestions and feedback on the new jobs bank. WDA will plan for industry engagement initiatives that will help employers better understand the jobs bank. WDA will provide more details closer to the launch of the jobs bank. Firms that wish to participate in the beta trial of the jobs bank can provide your contact details to: wda_jobs@wda.gov.sg.

 

Should you have any enquiries, please contact Ms Jasmine Ng or Ms Rohajirah Rohmadon at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or rohajirah@sicc.com.sg.

 


 

MALAYSIA BUSINESS  FORUM  2013 UPDATE

 

Key messages

 

At the invitation of the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), both SICC Secretariat and members participated in the annual Malaysia Business Forum held on 20 November 2013.

 

The key takeaways from the forum include the following:

 

Bilateral relations between Singapore and Malaysia

 

  • Malaysia is Singapore’s top trading partner and bilateral relations continue to go from strength to strength.
  • Singapore is the top foreign investor in Iskandar accounting for 16% of total foreign investment as of June 2013.
  • In addition to Iskandar Malaysia, the Malaysian delegates encouraged Singaporean businesses to consider investments in Sabah and Sarawak and in the northern and eastern corridors of Peninsula Malaysia.

 

Gradual subsidy rationalization to ensure sustainability in Malaysia

 

  • Subsidy spending is to reduce by 15.6% in 2014. Sustained gradual reductions are planned.
  • A 10%-11% increase in fuel prices was implemented in September this year.
  • The sugar subsidy will be removed in 2014 saving approximately RM300 million.

 

Broadening Malaysia’s tax base and enhancing government revenues

 

  • With effect from 1 April 2015, the government will impose a Goods & Services Tax (GST) of 6% to replace the existing sales and services taxes of 5%-10% and 6% respectively. Malaysia’s GST is the lowest in ASEAN.
  • Essential items will be zero-rated or exempted from GST: essential food items, transport services including toll payments, purchase and rental of residential properties and selected financial services.
  • Other tax reductions to offset the introduction of GST will include a reduction of 1%-3% in personal income tax in 2015 and a 1% reduction in corporate tax in 2016. Families with a monthly income of RM4,000 will no longer have any tax liabilities.
  • There will also be capital allowance, training grants and financial assistance for individuals and businesses.

 

Challenges faced by Singaporean businesses

 

  • Singapore businesses flagged cross-border traffic congestion as a major problem.
  • Participants at the forum called for seamless immigration at the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) Complex. This will also be needed for the proposed high-speed rail link.
  • As Iskandar Malaysia moves to attract high value-added industries such as aerospace, low-cost or labour-intensive businesses that are keen to relocate to Malaysia will find it more difficult to apply for relevant permits and work passes in Malaysia.

 


 

SICC EVENT

 

Internship for the Next Wave of Talent

 

13 November 2013
NextWaveofTalent

 

Internship programmes run by our local tertiary institutions are a significant source of manpower for Singapore businesses.  SICC and its member Temasek Polytechnic (TP) organised a sharing session on TP’s Student Internship Programme (SIP) on 13 November. 17 members from 7 business sectors attended.

 

TP offers both local and overseas internship programmes (OSIP). The SIP is mandatory for all final year students and the top 10% qualify for the OSIP which will allow them to work in emerging economies.

 

TP expects businesses to provide student interns with real roles so that they gain practical working experience and employability skills. The OSIP provides students with a valuable overseas working experience and helps nurture a broader outlook while encouraging students to be more independent and resilient. The funding for the OSIP works on a tripartite model, where TP funds the interns’ airfare and visa costs up to $1,000, the company provides accommodation and/or an allowance and the students take care of their own living expenses.

 

Depending on the diploma, both the SIP and OSIP may commence either in the first (March-August) or second (October-February) semester of the academic year and can last from 11 weeks to 6 months.

 

For more information on the student internship programmes offered by TP, please contact Ms Rowena Zheng at Rowena@tp.edu.sg or at tel 67806981.

 


 

GOVERNMENT ADVOCACY

 



Closed-door Dialogue with the Energy Market Authority on Energy Cost, Efficiency and Security

 


EMA Dialogue

 


Marina Bay Sands
5 November 2013

 

The final instalment of SICC’s series of closed-door dialogues with the government this year featured an informative presentation by the Chief Executive of the Energy Market Authority (EMA) Mr Chee Hong Tat. 28 members, mostly senior executives from companies in energy-dependant industries such as petrochemicals, marine and offshore engineering and manufacturing, attended the dialogue.

 

In his presentation, Mr Chee highlighted the need to balance Singapore’s multiple energy challenges of achieving a secure and cost competitive energy supply through diversification, delivering a reliable and resilient energy supply to end users, and paying attention to the importance of environmental sustainability. 
On the issue of energy costs, Mr Chee explained that unlike many countries in Asia, Singapore does not provide fuel subsidies. Another key driver is due to Singapore’s fuel mix, as more than 90% of our electricity is generated from natural gas and gas prices in Asia are currently much higher than Europe and North America. In most Asian economies, coal is a significant component of the fuel mix, e.g. 27% in Japan, 37% in Malaysia, 39% in South Korea and 78% in China. Mr Chee shared that compared to 2011, the electricity tariff in Singapore has dropped by more than 8% in real terms while wholesale electricity prices have fallen by more than 20%. This was brought about by new generation plantings and also an increase in gas supplies with the commencement of the LNG terminal in May 2013. Over the next few years, wholesale prices are likely to remain low due to increased competition in the electricity market.

 

Mr Chee highlighted that EMA has embarked on several initiatives in the past 2 years to further enhance Singapore’s energy supply security and cost competitiveness; including expanding the LNG terminal and enhancing the LNG import framework to enable Singapore gas buyers to access different gas supply sources as the global gas market evolves. EMA will also provide consumers with more options to manage their electricity costs through an expansion of retail contestability and the introduction of initiatives like demand response and the electricity futures market.

 

EMA will continue to explore alternative energy sources to diversify Singapore’s energy mix. The possibilities include renewable energy, coal and electricity imports.

 

  1. Renewable Energy: Of all the renewable energy options, solar has the highest potential for Singapore. EMA is supportive of solar energy as it is a clean energy source and can help to lower electricity prices by reducing peak demand during the day. In this regard, EMA is developing a regulatory framework to maximise the deployment of solar energy in Singapore when the technology becomes commercially viable, while ensuring that the intermittent nature of solar energy does not affect grid stability for consumers.
  2. Coal: EMA remains open to using coal as an energy source. Based on current coal and gas prices in Asia, the cost of producing electricity from coal is less than half the cost of producing electricity from natural gas. The main trade-off is carbon emissions. While clean coal technologies can effectively manage the level of pollutants from coal power plants, it is too expensive today to deploy carbon capture technologies to reduce their carbon emissions. This is a challenge which could be addressed over time with R&D and technological advancements.
  3. Electricity Imports: Through electricity imports, Singapore can tap into energy options that may be unavailable or economically infeasible in Singapore. Imports can help to further lower our electricity prices. EMA is developing a regulatory framework for the import of electricity into Singapore with the objectives of safeguarding security and reliability of our power system, and bringing cost savings to Singapore consumers.

 

The panel discussion with Mr Chee was moderated by SICC Board Director and Chair of the Chamber’s Petroleum and Petrochemical Committee, Mr Lee Tzu Yang. The session covered a wide range of topics that included balancing Singapore’s energy challenges of energy security, cost competitiveness and environmental sustainability, power sector resilience and emergency preparedness, strengthening Singapore’s gas supply system, status of the ASEAN Power Grid and nuclear energy in the region.

 

EMA is keen to engage with SICC members to obtain feedback on the above areas, including ideas to overcome carbon-related concerns associated with the use of coal as well as ways to further improve energy efficiency in Singapore. Members who are interested to share their thoughts may contact Ms Jasmine Ng or Ms Rohajirah bte Rohmadon at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or rohajirah@sicc.com.sg.

 


 

2012-2013 Annual Report to Members

 

Please click on the image below to read the annual report which showcases the achievements of your Chamber in 2012/2013.

 

For an optimal viewing experience we recommend that you use Chrome or Firefox to access the link.

 

Thank you for your continued participation in Chamber committees and events.

 

AR1213 Cover

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

Legal Services Group Inaugural Drinks Reception

 

Legal Services Group Nov 2013

 

SICC’s Legal Services Group held a drinks reception on Thursday, 7 November 2013. It was an opportunity for members from various law firms to network and ‘talk shop’ in a relaxed setting. Special thanks go to Nabarro LLP for hosting. Members like the idea of these informal sessions and the committee looks forward to welcoming more legal services members to future events.

 


 

Corporate Tax Filing Tips for Year of Assessment 2013 from IRAS

 

e-File Form C-S highres

 

Form C and Form C-Sa

 

  • Benefits of e-Filing Form C-S
  • Rebates/Reliefs for Companies
  • Case Study: How a company can benefit from the various tax schemes for YA 2013

 

 

 

readmore

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

SICC CEO Conversation Series – Conversation with Mr K Shanmugam, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Law

 

SICC Closed-Door Dialogue with Minister Shanmugam

 

Our latest SICC CEO Conversation Series took place on 25 October 2013. 24 CEOs from member firms representing nine industries participated in an inspirational closed-door dialogue session with Mr K Shanmugam, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Law. These events are always oversubscribed and the Chamber deliberately keeps the number of attendees small to facilitate a more informal and in-depth dialogue.

 

Members greatly appreciated the thought-provoking and candid responses from the Minister. The dialogue touched on domestic and geo-political issues as well as legal matters.

 

SICC is very grateful that Minister Shanmugam took the time to interact with CEOs from member firms and plans to continue similar dialogue sessions with other Ministers in 2014 and beyond.

 


 

 SICC SPARK SERIES ON BUSINESS INNOVATION

 

SICC SPARK Series on Business Innovation – Operational Excellence through Innovation at PSA Singapore Terminals

 

SPARK PSA 8 Oct

 

8 October 2013
PSA Auditorium

 

On 8 October 2013 54 members representing 14 industries attended the 4th SICC SPARK Series event on Business Innovation. The focus was PSA’s success story and how innovation lies at the core of its success. PSA very kindly hosted SICC members both at its HQ and during a tour of its Pasir Panjang Terminal.

 

In his presentation, Mr Ng Kok Cheong, Vice President (Container Logistics and Terminal Services), shared how PSA’s success has been driven by constant innovation to achieve greater efficiency, lower costs and better service and value for its customers. An early example of PSA’s innovation story is the development of flow-through gates to provide seamless processing of haulier traffic. These entrance gates to terminals were a world first and provide a faster processing rate of vehicles, IT was harnessed to reduce the time required for PSA’s customers to enter and leave its terminals. This innovation also led to a reduction of manpower for PSA.

 

Mr Eduardo Chakarian, Director of Monitor Deloitte moderated the subsequent Q&A discussion. Members were invited to provide their feedback or questions which led to a very lively exchange between PSA, the moderator and members.

 

After the presentation and Q&A, members were taken on a tour of the PSA Pasir Panjang Terminal including its Control Centre and Remote Crane Operations Centre. The Remote Crane Operations Centre is another showcase of PSA’s success in using innovation to improve productivity. The remote-controlled cranes are controlled by operators sitting in an office building rather than in the crane cabs. Each operator can handle up to six cranes in a safe working environment. This new working environment has also encouraged more women to take on the role of crane operators.

 

The event ended on a positive note as members achieved a good understanding of PSA’s constant innovation approach. PSA encourages all its staff to focus on doing things better, faster and cheaper. This robust structure of encouraging innovation contributes to the continued success of the organisation and its sustainability.

 

SICC SPARK Series on Business Innovation

 

Launched in November 2012, the SPARK Series on Business Innovation is an initiative of the SICC Industrialists Committee to encourage cross-industry learning by focusing on key aspects of business innovation chiefly, company culture, process and product improvement, greater operational efficiency and talent development.

 


 

GOVERNMENT ADVOCACY

 

SICC Closed-Door Dialogue with JTC Corporation

 

JTC Dialogue 1 Oct

 

1 October 2013
JTC Summit

 

20 members participated in this closed-door dialogue session with JTC Corporation initiated by the SICC Construction, Property & Real Estate Committee. The dialogue session attracted strong interest from members but the group was kept small to facilitate a more in-depth discussion with JTC.

 

Members were very impressed by the high level of engagement by JTC's Chairman Dr Loo Choon Yong and CEO Mr Png Cheong Boon. JTC is very keen to understand businesses’ concerns and to respond in the most pro-business manner possible.  Members appreciated the opportunity to be heard. The open discussion focused mainly on land allocation policies and intensification strategies to support Singapore’s economic growth.  

 

JTC stressed that in view of land scarcity in Singapore, the limited industrial land would have to be optimised based on the following broad guidelines:

 

  1. Industrial activities that generate high land productivity contributing towards Singapore’s economy
  2. Quality and number of jobs created
  3. Amount of investmentcompanies

 


JTC also shared that the Iskandar development would give Singaporean companies access to more land and provide opportunities for companies to scale up their operations outside of Singapore. Its proximity to Singapore also allowed for better management control.

 

Both SICC and JTC are very satisfied with the quality of the dialogue. The next step that JTC and SICC would like to take is to advance the dialogue to industry-centric discussions, beginning with the electronics industry.

 

JTC is also keen to hear your suggestions on the use of underground space by businesses. Interested members may contact Miss Jasmine Ng or Miss Rohajirah bte Rohmadon at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or rohajirah@sicc.com.sg to register your interest.

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

Preview of the Singapore Sports Hub, 26 Sep

 

sportshubpreview

 

©Photos courtesy of National Stadium Club

 

On 26 September 2013 our members were treated to an exclusive preview of the Singapore SportsHub which is scheduled to open in April 2014. Singapore Sportshub will be a world class venue for elite athletes, large scale sports and entertainment events. Its socially inclusive design also allows amateur sports enthusiasts to enjoy its many facilities.  

 

The venue for our event was the Experience Centre adjacent to the new National Stadium which showcases the luxurious corporate suites and premier seats managed by the National Stadium Club.

 

Members from 12 industries enjoyed a series of short presentations by representatives of World Sports Group, DP Architects and Arup on the philosophy behind the SportsHub’s vision, architecture and cutting edge engineering.

 

The night ended on a vibrant note, as Chamber members and secretariat staff mingled with SportsHub representatives over dinner and drinks.

 


 

Innovation Strategies in a Service-Driven Economy

 

ESSEC

 

19 September 2013

 

ESSEC Asia-Pacific

 

In the 21st century, innovation has become synonymous with business success. It is with this in mind that the Chamber invited Prof Herve Mathe, Dean of ESSEC Asia-Pacific to share with members his inputs and analyses about innovation strategies in a service-driven economy and how to manage innovation for today's organisations.

 

Peppering his engaging presentation with case studies and best practices by companies from various industries, Prof Mathe engaged and challenged the 25 participants to think out of the box and look beyond the rigid buying and selling a product or service; instead, businesses should innovate a memorable experience for customers, such that the experience translates into a buy-in and following.

 

His recommendations on steps to creation of value include understanding the market, continuously delivering relevant and efficient solutions, and addressing the compatibility of value creation goals.

 


 

PRESS RELEASE

 


SICC announces appointment of Mr Victor Mills
as its new Chief Operating Officer

 


Singapore, 24 September 2013

 

The Singapore International Chamber of Commerce (SICC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Victor Mills as its Chief Operating Officer with immediate effect.

 

Victor will be working closely with Phil Overmyer, Chief Executive, to continue raising SICC’s effectiveness as the voice of international businesses in Singapore connecting multinational corporations (MNCs), government-linked companies (GLCs) and home-grown companies across different industries.

 

Phil Overmyer said: "I am delighted to welcome Victor to his new role. I am confident that his enthusiasm and commitment will be of great benefit to SICC as we continue our work with members and government with the aim of strengthening Singapore’s position as a global business hub.”

 

Victor brings 30 years of commercial experience to SICC. He has worked for leading banks such as HSBC and Standard Chartered in a variety of roles and businesses. He has served institutional clients for 20 years based out of Singapore covering the south and Southeast Asian as well as the east African regions. He latterly spent more than 5 years leading market advocacy efforts for market participants in the Singapore securities business.

 

Commenting on his appointment Victor said: "SICC has an enviable reputation as an influential Chamber for 176 years and I look forward to working closely with Phil, my secretariat colleagues and the SICC Board to ensure that members’ needs continue to be met with consistent relevance and high quality service.”

 

Victor originally hails from Northern Ireland, U.K. and holds a B.A. (Hons) in History from The New University of Ulster, UK and a Master of Arts Area Studies: East European political science) from the University of London, UK.

 

He has been associated with Singapore for 28 years and is a proud Singapore citizen.

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:

 

Michelle Seth-Langbein

 

Director, Business Development/Corporate Communications

 

Tel:     6500 0960

 

Email: michelle@sicc.com.sg

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

SICC Members’ Networking Night

 

Networking photos 19Sept

 

17 September 2013

 

District 10 Bar & Restaurant

 

Many thanks to our members for joining us at the Members’ Networking Night on 17 September at District 10 Bar & Restaurant. Thanks to good food, fine wines and excellent company, 44 members from 15 industries had a truly enjoyable evening. They relaxed with friends and made new ones as you can see from the pictures above.

 

Participation at our events is open to all employees of a member company; please contact us at events@sicc.com.sg if you are interested to find out more on the Chamber’s events and sponsorship opportunities.

 


 

SICC GOVERNMENT ADVOCACY

 


SICC-MOM Closed-Door Dialogues for the Manufacturing and Services Industries

 

MOM Dialogues 2013

 

5 & 12 September 2013
Marina Bay Sands

 


In an extension to SICC’s annual closed-door dialogues with the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), this year’s dialogue comprised two sessions that focused on the twin pillars of Singapore’s economy – Manufacturing and Services.

 

The pace and magnitude of tightening of foreign manpower over the last two years has impacted SMEs severely. As a result, large companies, both foreign and local, have become concerned with potential project delays as SMEs may not deliver their products and services in time due to acute manpower shortage.

 

Feedback like this underlies SICC’s call to MOM to calibrate their policies according to different industries’ needs and challenges in hiring and retaining foreign workers, particularly for certain industries that are in need of skill sets, knowledge and experience not readily found among Singaporeans.

 

Participants at the two sessions engaged in active discussion with senior officials from the Ministry during the dialogue and over lunch. Topics revolving around the issue of foreign manpower cap versus economic trade-offs,   mind-sets of locals, optimisation of human capital, and fair consideration for Singaporeans were discussed and debated.

 

This dialogue was initiated by the SICC Manpower and Productivity Committee which is one platform where members can engage across industries on manpower issues. The Committee is led by SICC Board Director Mr Jonathan Asherson who is also the Regional Director (SE Asia and Pacific) of Rolls-Royce Singapore Pte Ltd. SICC members interested to find out more about the Committee may contact Ms Jasmine Ng, Director, Government Relations/Trade Services at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or 6500 0973.

 


 

 Please click here for past events organised by SICC

 

For further information, please contact
Ms Leanne Hwee
Tel: (65) 6500 0964,
Fax: (65) 6224 2785,
Email: leanne@sicc.com.sg

 

SICC EVENT

 

SICC Foreign Diplomat Series: Her Excellency Hazel Ngubeni, High Commissioner of the Republic of South Africa

3 April 2014

Sheraton Towers Singapore

 

HCForeignDiplomat

 

 

It was with much pleasure that SICC invited H.E. Hazel Ngubeni, High Commissioner of the Republic of South Africa, to speak at our first Foreign Diplomat Series event for the year. This series features ambassadors and high commissioners who speak on business issues and investment opportunities in their respective countries.

 

High Commissioner Ngubeni gave a very clear overview of the diverse business opportunities available to entrepreneurs and investors across South Africa’s nine provinces. The High Commissioner highlighted the challenges which investors will face and shared how these could be overcome by applying practical social responsibility measures. Members very much appreciated High Commissioner Ngubeni’s candour and engaging personality. SICC will continue to organise events with members of the diplomatic corps so that members can gain in-depth knowledge and a better understanding of investment opportunities abroad.

 

 


 

SICC EVENT

SICC CEO Conversation Series with Mr Tan Chuan-Jin Acting Minister for Manpower

28 March 2014
Pan Pacific Singapore, Ocean 5, Level 2

TanChuan-Jin28March2014LeftTanChuan-Jin28March2014

On 28 March 2014, we invited Acting Minister for Manpower Mr Tan Chuan-Jin for a dialogue session with our members to discuss the government’s manpower policies. More than 30 C-suite members attended the event to hear first-hand from the Minister, and shared with him the challenges they face in talent attraction and retention, especially in a tight labour market. They also shared their concerns about the current manpower policies and, in particular, the quotas for foreign workers.

On his part, the Acting Minister reiterated that Singapore will always remain open to businesses. He explained the government’s need to moderate the inflow of foreign labour as part of Singapore’s economic restructuring towards more productivity-led and manpower-lean growth. He encouraged businesses to constantly innovate and be more productive.

The key conclusion from this event is that businesses are encouraged to provide feedback about the challenges they face, the skills they feel the workforce is lacking, and the issues they experience in talent development and retention. This will help identify potential areas to be addressed and, drive more meaningful courses and development programmes to train employees.

The Minister’s openness is very much appreciated by the Chamber and its members.

 

 

 

SICC EVENT

 

SICC Distinguished Speaker Series with Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong
12 March 2014
Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre

 

 GCT-Distinguish

 

The Chamber was singularly honoured by ESM Goh Chok Tong’s acceptance of its invitation to speak to members. 30 C-Suite members attended this closed-door dialogue session. The Chamber deliberately keeps the number of attendees small at these signature events to facilitate a more informal and more in-depth dialogue. 

 

Members appreciated ESM Goh’s insights on a broad spectrum of topical issues and his lively and engaging style. The issues raised ranged from geo-political developments such as the implications of the ASEAN Economic Community and China’s development to the region, to domestic challenges confronting Singapore such as managing rising business costs, the foreign manpower question, how to spur continuous business innovation and to remain competitive were discussed. ESM Goh also spent some time mingling with members after the end of the dialogue session which was both enjoyed and appreciated.

 


 

 SICC EVENT

 


Post-Budget Breakfast Briefing 2014
 

 

Wednesday, 5 March 2014 

 

Sheraton Towers

 

Post-Budget 5 Mar

 

The Chamber’s annual joint event with The Iyer Practice was held at Sheraton Towers Hotel on 5 March. This event was attended by 45 members and clients representing over 18 industries.

 

We were very lucky to have two expert speakers. Mr Kit Wei Zheng, Director, Asia Pacific Economic and Market Analysis for Citibank gave us the macro perspective of the budget in its political context. His very lively and engaging presentation was followed by an equally impressive and insightful presentation by Mr Shanker Iyer, Chairman of The Iyer Practice. Mr Iyer focussed on the key budget measures. He explained how these address the government’s aim of quality growth driven by innovation and greater productivity. The fact that there was no increase in corporate tax was business friendly.  

 


 

SICC EVENT

 

SCCIOB conducts a briefing session on ETS Scheme and APEX Programme

 

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

 

SICC Board Room

 

  

 

SCCIOB - For uploading

 

In a piece of win-win collaboration the Singapore Chinese Chamber Institute of Business (SCCIOB) conducted a briefing for SICC members on the ETS Scheme and APEX Programme.

 

SCCIOB representatives Mr Justin Lee and Ms Cleo Goh gave informative presentations on WDA’s Enterprise Training Support (ETS) Scheme and the Aspiring Productivity Excellence (APEX) programme respectively. The latter programme is designed to help companies identify and train their own in-house productivity managers. SCCIOB also invited Mr Toh Ming Hon from the Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (A*Star) to talk about the importance of enhancing efficiency and productivity in an organisation.

 


 

  

 

MEDIA STATEMENT FROM

 

SINGAPORE INTERNATIONAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

 

ON SINGAPORE BUDGET 2014

 

Singapore, 21 February 2014

 

The Singapore International Chamber of Commerce (SICC) is impressed with Budget 2014’s focus on quality growth and the continued steps to enhance social mobility and inclusiveness.

 

It is no surprise that the government is forging ahead by enhancing measures to encourage increased productivity, innovation and the internationalisation of Singapore companies. This is a necessity for Singapore companies to remain competitive. SICC welcomes the extension of the Productivity and Innovation Credit (PIC) scheme for another three years.

 

SICC agrees with the DPM and Minister for Finance’s comment that productivity is not just about dollars and cents.  It is about changing mindsets sector by sector, discarding outdated practices and innovating for a sustainable future.

 

However, as recent pre-budget surveys have shown, companies continue to struggle with higher business costs and a shortage of manpower. These lead to inflationary pressures which need to be carefully monitored.

 

On the question of manpower, SICC still believes that sector specific calibration of the manpower policy will help companies progress in their productivity journey.

 

For Media Enquiries, please contact:

 

Ms Reavathi Sinnathamby

 

Senior Manager, Communications & Events

 

Tel: 6500 0966

 

Email: reavathi@sicc.com.sg

 


 

SICC PRE-BUDGET EVENT

 

21 January 2014

 

SICC Boardroom

 

TaxBriefing

 

Our guest speaker was Mr Shanker Iyer, Founder and Chairman of Iyer Practice. He  gave a quick overview of the key measures of last year’s budget before talking about SICC Members’ Budget Wishlist for 2014.

 

The event ended with a Q&A session and discussion on what might be expected in the 2014 Budget which will be announced on 21 February 2014.

 

Join us for our annual post-budget event on 5 March 2014 at which Mr Iyer and Mr Kit Wei Zheng, Economist with Citibank will provide perspective and comment on the key measures announced in this year’s budget. Full details of the event can be found on our web site.

 


 

SICC MEMBERS' NETWORKING NIGHT

 

16 January 2014

 

Conrad Centennial Singapore

 

 

The first Members’ Networking Night of the year was held on Thursday, 16 January 2014 at Conrad Centennial hotel. The networking sessions continue to be a draw. This time 47 members from 12 industries enjoyed meeting over good food from the Conrad and wines sponsored by Certain Cellars.

 

SICC’s Facebook team also went around distributing little cards with the URL to members and encouraged them to ‘Like’ the SICC Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/SICCSG .

 

Participation at our events is open to all employees of a member company. Please contact us at events@sicc.com.sg if you are interested to find out more on the Chamber’s events and sponsorship opportunities.

 


 

SICC – MOM Briefing on the Fair Consideration Framework, 14 January 2014

 

SICC was pleased to organise this session to facilitate the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) efforts to educate employers on the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) and, in particular, the new jobs bank to be launched in mid 2014. Over 70 members participated.

 

mom14Jan

 

The new jobs bank will be administered by the Workforce Development Agency (WDA) and will enable employers to access a large pool of Singaporean candidates. The jobs bank will also help the government to identify skills shortages among Singaporeans and facilitate the creation of national education and training programmes.

 

The key takeaways from the session include:

 

  1. Employers are required to post job advertisements for 14 days on the new jobs bank for all jobs that would need a fresh employment pass (EP) application. No fees will be charged for advertising on the jobs bank.
  2. As a public website, information on the new jobs bank can be viewed by all its visitors. However, some features of the new job portal will be restricted to locals only, which include: 

    a) Upload their resumes or be guided to create a resume 

    b) Respond and apply to job advertisements online within the portal 

    c) Shortlist suitable job advertisements, track job application status. While there is no requirement for firms to retain interview and job offer records, it will be in the interest of the firms to do so to support their practices, if there are complaints of discriminatory hiring.

  3. While there is no requirement for firms to retain interview and job offer records, it will be in the interest of the firms to do so to support their practices, if there are complaints of discriminatory hiring.

 

SICC is pleased that MOM will take its members’ suggestions and feedback on the new jobs bank. WDA will plan for industry engagement initiatives that will help employers better understand the jobs bank. WDA will provide more details closer to the launch of the jobs bank. Firms that wish to participate in the beta trial of the jobs bank can provide your contact details to: wda_jobs@wda.gov.sg.

 

Should you have any enquiries, please contact Ms Jasmine Ng or Ms Rohajirah Rohmadon at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or rohajirah@sicc.com.sg.

 


 

MALAYSIA BUSINESS  FORUM  2013 UPDATE

 

Key messages

 

At the invitation of the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), both SICC Secretariat and members participated in the annual Malaysia Business Forum held on 20 November 2013.

 

The key takeaways from the forum include the following:

 

Bilateral relations between Singapore and Malaysia

 

  • Malaysia is Singapore’s top trading partner and bilateral relations continue to go from strength to strength.
  • Singapore is the top foreign investor in Iskandar accounting for 16% of total foreign investment as of June 2013.
  • In addition to Iskandar Malaysia, the Malaysian delegates encouraged Singaporean businesses to consider investments in Sabah and Sarawak and in the northern and eastern corridors of Peninsula Malaysia.

 

Gradual subsidy rationalization to ensure sustainability in Malaysia

 

  • Subsidy spending is to reduce by 15.6% in 2014. Sustained gradual reductions are planned.
  • A 10%-11% increase in fuel prices was implemented in September this year.
  • The sugar subsidy will be removed in 2014 saving approximately RM300 million.

 

Broadening Malaysia’s tax base and enhancing government revenues

 

  • With effect from 1 April 2015, the government will impose a Goods & Services Tax (GST) of 6% to replace the existing sales and services taxes of 5%-10% and 6% respectively. Malaysia’s GST is the lowest in ASEAN.
  • Essential items will be zero-rated or exempted from GST: essential food items, transport services including toll payments, purchase and rental of residential properties and selected financial services.
  • Other tax reductions to offset the introduction of GST will include a reduction of 1%-3% in personal income tax in 2015 and a 1% reduction in corporate tax in 2016. Families with a monthly income of RM4,000 will no longer have any tax liabilities.
  • There will also be capital allowance, training grants and financial assistance for individuals and businesses.

 

Challenges faced by Singaporean businesses

 

  • Singapore businesses flagged cross-border traffic congestion as a major problem.
  • Participants at the forum called for seamless immigration at the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) Complex. This will also be needed for the proposed high-speed rail link.
  • As Iskandar Malaysia moves to attract high value-added industries such as aerospace, low-cost or labour-intensive businesses that are keen to relocate to Malaysia will find it more difficult to apply for relevant permits and work passes in Malaysia.

 


 

SICC EVENT

 

Internship for the Next Wave of Talent

 

13 November 2013
NextWaveofTalent

 

Internship programmes run by our local tertiary institutions are a significant source of manpower for Singapore businesses.  SICC and its member Temasek Polytechnic (TP) organised a sharing session on TP’s Student Internship Programme (SIP) on 13 November. 17 members from 7 business sectors attended.

 

TP offers both local and overseas internship programmes (OSIP). The SIP is mandatory for all final year students and the top 10% qualify for the OSIP which will allow them to work in emerging economies.

 

TP expects businesses to provide student interns with real roles so that they gain practical working experience and employability skills. The OSIP provides students with a valuable overseas working experience and helps nurture a broader outlook while encouraging students to be more independent and resilient. The funding for the OSIP works on a tripartite model, where TP funds the interns’ airfare and visa costs up to $1,000, the company provides accommodation and/or an allowance and the students take care of their own living expenses.

 

Depending on the diploma, both the SIP and OSIP may commence either in the first (March-August) or second (October-February) semester of the academic year and can last from 11 weeks to 6 months.

 

For more information on the student internship programmes offered by TP, please contact Ms Rowena Zheng at Rowena@tp.edu.sg or at tel 67806981.

 


 

GOVERNMENT ADVOCACY

 



Closed-door Dialogue with the Energy Market Authority on Energy Cost, Efficiency and Security

 


EMA Dialogue

 


Marina Bay Sands
5 November 2013

 

The final instalment of SICC’s series of closed-door dialogues with the government this year featured an informative presentation by the Chief Executive of the Energy Market Authority (EMA) Mr Chee Hong Tat. 28 members, mostly senior executives from companies in energy-dependant industries such as petrochemicals, marine and offshore engineering and manufacturing, attended the dialogue.

 

In his presentation, Mr Chee highlighted the need to balance Singapore’s multiple energy challenges of achieving a secure and cost competitive energy supply through diversification, delivering a reliable and resilient energy supply to end users, and paying attention to the importance of environmental sustainability. 
On the issue of energy costs, Mr Chee explained that unlike many countries in Asia, Singapore does not provide fuel subsidies. Another key driver is due to Singapore’s fuel mix, as more than 90% of our electricity is generated from natural gas and gas prices in Asia are currently much higher than Europe and North America. In most Asian economies, coal is a significant component of the fuel mix, e.g. 27% in Japan, 37% in Malaysia, 39% in South Korea and 78% in China. Mr Chee shared that compared to 2011, the electricity tariff in Singapore has dropped by more than 8% in real terms while wholesale electricity prices have fallen by more than 20%. This was brought about by new generation plantings and also an increase in gas supplies with the commencement of the LNG terminal in May 2013. Over the next few years, wholesale prices are likely to remain low due to increased competition in the electricity market.

 

Mr Chee highlighted that EMA has embarked on several initiatives in the past 2 years to further enhance Singapore’s energy supply security and cost competitiveness; including expanding the LNG terminal and enhancing the LNG import framework to enable Singapore gas buyers to access different gas supply sources as the global gas market evolves. EMA will also provide consumers with more options to manage their electricity costs through an expansion of retail contestability and the introduction of initiatives like demand response and the electricity futures market.

 

EMA will continue to explore alternative energy sources to diversify Singapore’s energy mix. The possibilities include renewable energy, coal and electricity imports.

 

  1. Renewable Energy: Of all the renewable energy options, solar has the highest potential for Singapore. EMA is supportive of solar energy as it is a clean energy source and can help to lower electricity prices by reducing peak demand during the day. In this regard, EMA is developing a regulatory framework to maximise the deployment of solar energy in Singapore when the technology becomes commercially viable, while ensuring that the intermittent nature of solar energy does not affect grid stability for consumers.
  2. Coal: EMA remains open to using coal as an energy source. Based on current coal and gas prices in Asia, the cost of producing electricity from coal is less than half the cost of producing electricity from natural gas. The main trade-off is carbon emissions. While clean coal technologies can effectively manage the level of pollutants from coal power plants, it is too expensive today to deploy carbon capture technologies to reduce their carbon emissions. This is a challenge which could be addressed over time with R&D and technological advancements.
  3. Electricity Imports: Through electricity imports, Singapore can tap into energy options that may be unavailable or economically infeasible in Singapore. Imports can help to further lower our electricity prices. EMA is developing a regulatory framework for the import of electricity into Singapore with the objectives of safeguarding security and reliability of our power system, and bringing cost savings to Singapore consumers.

 

The panel discussion with Mr Chee was moderated by SICC Board Director and Chair of the Chamber’s Petroleum and Petrochemical Committee, Mr Lee Tzu Yang. The session covered a wide range of topics that included balancing Singapore’s energy challenges of energy security, cost competitiveness and environmental sustainability, power sector resilience and emergency preparedness, strengthening Singapore’s gas supply system, status of the ASEAN Power Grid and nuclear energy in the region.

 

EMA is keen to engage with SICC members to obtain feedback on the above areas, including ideas to overcome carbon-related concerns associated with the use of coal as well as ways to further improve energy efficiency in Singapore. Members who are interested to share their thoughts may contact Ms Jasmine Ng or Ms Rohajirah bte Rohmadon at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or rohajirah@sicc.com.sg.

 


 

2012-2013 Annual Report to Members

 

Please click on the image below to read the annual report which showcases the achievements of your Chamber in 2012/2013.

 

For an optimal viewing experience we recommend that you use Chrome or Firefox to access the link.

 

Thank you for your continued participation in Chamber committees and events.

 

AR1213 Cover

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

Legal Services Group Inaugural Drinks Reception

 

Legal Services Group Nov 2013

 

SICC’s Legal Services Group held a drinks reception on Thursday, 7 November 2013. It was an opportunity for members from various law firms to network and ‘talk shop’ in a relaxed setting. Special thanks go to Nabarro LLP for hosting. Members like the idea of these informal sessions and the committee looks forward to welcoming more legal services members to future events.

 


 

Corporate Tax Filing Tips for Year of Assessment 2013 from IRAS

 

e-File Form C-S highres

 

Form C and Form C-Sa

 

  • Benefits of e-Filing Form C-S
  • Rebates/Reliefs for Companies
  • Case Study: How a company can benefit from the various tax schemes for YA 2013

 

 

 

readmore

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

SICC CEO Conversation Series – Conversation with Mr K Shanmugam, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Law

 

SICC Closed-Door Dialogue with Minister Shanmugam

 

Our latest SICC CEO Conversation Series took place on 25 October 2013. 24 CEOs from member firms representing nine industries participated in an inspirational closed-door dialogue session with Mr K Shanmugam, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Law. These events are always oversubscribed and the Chamber deliberately keeps the number of attendees small to facilitate a more informal and in-depth dialogue.

 

Members greatly appreciated the thought-provoking and candid responses from the Minister. The dialogue touched on domestic and geo-political issues as well as legal matters.

 

SICC is very grateful that Minister Shanmugam took the time to interact with CEOs from member firms and plans to continue similar dialogue sessions with other Ministers in 2014 and beyond.

 


 

 SICC SPARK SERIES ON BUSINESS INNOVATION

 

SICC SPARK Series on Business Innovation – Operational Excellence through Innovation at PSA Singapore Terminals

 

SPARK PSA 8 Oct

 

8 October 2013
PSA Auditorium

 

On 8 October 2013 54 members representing 14 industries attended the 4th SICC SPARK Series event on Business Innovation. The focus was PSA’s success story and how innovation lies at the core of its success. PSA very kindly hosted SICC members both at its HQ and during a tour of its Pasir Panjang Terminal.

 

In his presentation, Mr Ng Kok Cheong, Vice President (Container Logistics and Terminal Services), shared how PSA’s success has been driven by constant innovation to achieve greater efficiency, lower costs and better service and value for its customers. An early example of PSA’s innovation story is the development of flow-through gates to provide seamless processing of haulier traffic. These entrance gates to terminals were a world first and provide a faster processing rate of vehicles, IT was harnessed to reduce the time required for PSA’s customers to enter and leave its terminals. This innovation also led to a reduction of manpower for PSA.

 

Mr Eduardo Chakarian, Director of Monitor Deloitte moderated the subsequent Q&A discussion. Members were invited to provide their feedback or questions which led to a very lively exchange between PSA, the moderator and members.

 

After the presentation and Q&A, members were taken on a tour of the PSA Pasir Panjang Terminal including its Control Centre and Remote Crane Operations Centre. The Remote Crane Operations Centre is another showcase of PSA’s success in using innovation to improve productivity. The remote-controlled cranes are controlled by operators sitting in an office building rather than in the crane cabs. Each operator can handle up to six cranes in a safe working environment. This new working environment has also encouraged more women to take on the role of crane operators.

 

The event ended on a positive note as members achieved a good understanding of PSA’s constant innovation approach. PSA encourages all its staff to focus on doing things better, faster and cheaper. This robust structure of encouraging innovation contributes to the continued success of the organisation and its sustainability.

 

SICC SPARK Series on Business Innovation

 

Launched in November 2012, the SPARK Series on Business Innovation is an initiative of the SICC Industrialists Committee to encourage cross-industry learning by focusing on key aspects of business innovation chiefly, company culture, process and product improvement, greater operational efficiency and talent development.

 


 

GOVERNMENT ADVOCACY

 

SICC Closed-Door Dialogue with JTC Corporation

 

JTC Dialogue 1 Oct

 

1 October 2013
JTC Summit

 

20 members participated in this closed-door dialogue session with JTC Corporation initiated by the SICC Construction, Property & Real Estate Committee. The dialogue session attracted strong interest from members but the group was kept small to facilitate a more in-depth discussion with JTC.

 

Members were very impressed by the high level of engagement by JTC's Chairman Dr Loo Choon Yong and CEO Mr Png Cheong Boon. JTC is very keen to understand businesses’ concerns and to respond in the most pro-business manner possible.  Members appreciated the opportunity to be heard. The open discussion focused mainly on land allocation policies and intensification strategies to support Singapore’s economic growth.  

 

JTC stressed that in view of land scarcity in Singapore, the limited industrial land would have to be optimised based on the following broad guidelines:

 

  1. Industrial activities that generate high land productivity contributing towards Singapore’s economy
  2. Quality and number of jobs created
  3. Amount of investmentcompanies

 


JTC also shared that the Iskandar development would give Singaporean companies access to more land and provide opportunities for companies to scale up their operations outside of Singapore. Its proximity to Singapore also allowed for better management control.

 

Both SICC and JTC are very satisfied with the quality of the dialogue. The next step that JTC and SICC would like to take is to advance the dialogue to industry-centric discussions, beginning with the electronics industry.

 

JTC is also keen to hear your suggestions on the use of underground space by businesses. Interested members may contact Miss Jasmine Ng or Miss Rohajirah bte Rohmadon at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or rohajirah@sicc.com.sg to register your interest.

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

Preview of the Singapore Sports Hub, 26 Sep

 

sportshubpreview

 

©Photos courtesy of National Stadium Club

 

On 26 September 2013 our members were treated to an exclusive preview of the Singapore SportsHub which is scheduled to open in April 2014. Singapore Sportshub will be a world class venue for elite athletes, large scale sports and entertainment events. Its socially inclusive design also allows amateur sports enthusiasts to enjoy its many facilities.  

 

The venue for our event was the Experience Centre adjacent to the new National Stadium which showcases the luxurious corporate suites and premier seats managed by the National Stadium Club.

 

Members from 12 industries enjoyed a series of short presentations by representatives of World Sports Group, DP Architects and Arup on the philosophy behind the SportsHub’s vision, architecture and cutting edge engineering.

 

The night ended on a vibrant note, as Chamber members and secretariat staff mingled with SportsHub representatives over dinner and drinks.

 


 

Innovation Strategies in a Service-Driven Economy

 

ESSEC

 

19 September 2013

 

ESSEC Asia-Pacific

 

In the 21st century, innovation has become synonymous with business success. It is with this in mind that the Chamber invited Prof Herve Mathe, Dean of ESSEC Asia-Pacific to share with members his inputs and analyses about innovation strategies in a service-driven economy and how to manage innovation for today's organisations.

 

Peppering his engaging presentation with case studies and best practices by companies from various industries, Prof Mathe engaged and challenged the 25 participants to think out of the box and look beyond the rigid buying and selling a product or service; instead, businesses should innovate a memorable experience for customers, such that the experience translates into a buy-in and following.

 

His recommendations on steps to creation of value include understanding the market, continuously delivering relevant and efficient solutions, and addressing the compatibility of value creation goals.

 


 

PRESS RELEASE

 


SICC announces appointment of Mr Victor Mills
as its new Chief Operating Officer

 


Singapore, 24 September 2013

 

The Singapore International Chamber of Commerce (SICC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Victor Mills as its Chief Operating Officer with immediate effect.

 

Victor will be working closely with Phil Overmyer, Chief Executive, to continue raising SICC’s effectiveness as the voice of international businesses in Singapore connecting multinational corporations (MNCs), government-linked companies (GLCs) and home-grown companies across different industries.

 

Phil Overmyer said: "I am delighted to welcome Victor to his new role. I am confident that his enthusiasm and commitment will be of great benefit to SICC as we continue our work with members and government with the aim of strengthening Singapore’s position as a global business hub.”

 

Victor brings 30 years of commercial experience to SICC. He has worked for leading banks such as HSBC and Standard Chartered in a variety of roles and businesses. He has served institutional clients for 20 years based out of Singapore covering the south and Southeast Asian as well as the east African regions. He latterly spent more than 5 years leading market advocacy efforts for market participants in the Singapore securities business.

 

Commenting on his appointment Victor said: "SICC has an enviable reputation as an influential Chamber for 176 years and I look forward to working closely with Phil, my secretariat colleagues and the SICC Board to ensure that members’ needs continue to be met with consistent relevance and high quality service.”

 

Victor originally hails from Northern Ireland, U.K. and holds a B.A. (Hons) in History from The New University of Ulster, UK and a Master of Arts Area Studies: East European political science) from the University of London, UK.

 

He has been associated with Singapore for 28 years and is a proud Singapore citizen.

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:

 

Michelle Seth-Langbein

 

Director, Business Development/Corporate Communications

 

Tel:     6500 0960

 

Email: michelle@sicc.com.sg

 


 

SICC EVENTS

 

SICC Members’ Networking Night

 

Networking photos 19Sept

 

17 September 2013

 

District 10 Bar & Restaurant

 

Many thanks to our members for joining us at the Members’ Networking Night on 17 September at District 10 Bar & Restaurant. Thanks to good food, fine wines and excellent company, 44 members from 15 industries had a truly enjoyable evening. They relaxed with friends and made new ones as you can see from the pictures above.

 

Participation at our events is open to all employees of a member company; please contact us at events@sicc.com.sg if you are interested to find out more on the Chamber’s events and sponsorship opportunities.

 


 

SICC GOVERNMENT ADVOCACY

 


SICC-MOM Closed-Door Dialogues for the Manufacturing and Services Industries

 

MOM Dialogues 2013

 

5 & 12 September 2013
Marina Bay Sands

 


In an extension to SICC’s annual closed-door dialogues with the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), this year’s dialogue comprised two sessions that focused on the twin pillars of Singapore’s economy – Manufacturing and Services.

 

The pace and magnitude of tightening of foreign manpower over the last two years has impacted SMEs severely. As a result, large companies, both foreign and local, have become concerned with potential project delays as SMEs may not deliver their products and services in time due to acute manpower shortage.

 

Feedback like this underlies SICC’s call to MOM to calibrate their policies according to different industries’ needs and challenges in hiring and retaining foreign workers, particularly for certain industries that are in need of skill sets, knowledge and experience not readily found among Singaporeans.

 

Participants at the two sessions engaged in active discussion with senior officials from the Ministry during the dialogue and over lunch. Topics revolving around the issue of foreign manpower cap versus economic trade-offs,   mind-sets of locals, optimisation of human capital, and fair consideration for Singaporeans were discussed and debated.

 

This dialogue was initiated by the SICC Manpower and Productivity Committee which is one platform where members can engage across industries on manpower issues. The Committee is led by SICC Board Director Mr Jonathan Asherson who is also the Regional Director (SE Asia and Pacific) of Rolls-Royce Singapore Pte Ltd. SICC members interested to find out more about the Committee may contact Ms Jasmine Ng, Director, Government Relations/Trade Services at jasmine@sicc.com.sg or 6500 0973.

 


 

 Please click here for past events organised by SICC

 

For further information, please contact
Ms Leanne Hwee
Tel: (65) 6500 0964,
Fax: (65) 6224 2785,
Email: leanne@sicc.com.sg