Do more to promote local products

It is heartening to know that the Suppliers Support and Development Programme has benefited smaller businesses ("SMEs get a boost from FairPrice scheme"; Feb 20).

Although Singaporeans are more aware and supportive of locally-made products, it does not necessarily entail a brighter future for our home-grown businesses.

There are Singaporeans who believe that foreign and imported goods are better than local goods, be it chilli sauce, pasta or shoes.

So long as we harbour this mindset, our local businesses will find it difficult to promote their brands.

Hence, it is imperative that these businesses match their foreign competitors by offering quality products, better service and lower prices.

Over the years, our locally-produced goods have won the trust of consumers at home and abroad, in terms of quality control and stringent checks by the authorities. This gives us an edge over our competitors in the region.

To move ahead in the increasingly competitive business environment, local businesses should pay more attention to promoting merchandise from Singapore brands.

It saddens me that our major supermarkets occasionally stage fairs featuring products from Japan, Taiwan, Korea and Thailand.

We may lose out, unless we are more proactive in organising "Buy Singapore Products" fairs.

Jeffrey Law Lee Beng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 23, 2017, with the headline 'Do more to promote local products'. Print Edition | Subscribe