JTC launches Industry Connect Office to help S'pore businesses in digital transformation

Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim Yong (centre) at the launch of JTC's Industry Connect Office @ Jurong Innovation District. ST PHOTO: GIN TAY

SINGAPORE - Some 1,000 local companies are set to get support in their digital transformation journeys over the next three years, where they can gain access to technology and training partners, develop new capabilities and redesign jobs.

The Industry Connect Office @ Jurong Innovation District (JID) was launched by JTC Corporation on Tuesday (Nov 16) as a one-stop centre to help more manufacturers, especially local small and medium-sized enterprises, accelerate their transformation.

JTC said that with the new office, companies can learn more about Industry 4.0 - the digital transformation of manufacturing and production processes - through sharing sessions and seminars.

Of the 1,000 targeted companies, 300 are expected to undergo diagnostics, consultancy and training services to adopt new technology and upskill their workforce.

The office's location in JID, which is an "advanced manufacturing ecosystem" of research institutions, technology and training enablers, and factories of the future, will also be beneficial for these businesses, JTC added.

Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim Yong, in a speech at the launch of the new office on Tuesday, noted that manufacturing is an important sector for Singapore.

It contributes to around 20 per cent of the Republic's gross domestic product (GDP).

Last year, the sector employed 450,000 people. In the same year, while Singapore's real GDP declined by 5.4 per cent, the manufacturing sector grew by 7.3 per cent.

Describing the sector as resilient, Mr Gan added: "Manufacturing also helps to generate greater economic activity as investors branch out to undertake research and development and headquarters activities such as supply chain management here in Singapore."

He said the launch of the Industry Connect Office "signifies an important milestone in our Industry 4.0 transformation journey".

"With this office, companies will be able to have access to one-stop assistance to start, scale and sustain their Industry 4.0 transformation."

JTC said it will be working with the Advanced Manufacturing Training Academy (AMTA) to provide consultancy and advisory services on Industry 4.0 skills and training at the new Industry Connect Office.

"Companies that are keen to further their Industry 4.0 ambitions will be matched with technology and training partners to identify their problem statements, pinpoint suitable solutions and participate in upskilling programmes," JTC said.

Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim Yong speaking at the launch of JTC's Industry Connect Office @ Jurong Innovation District on Nov 16, 2021. ST PHOTO: GIN TAY

As part of the Industry Connect Office's outreach efforts, 13 partners under the Industry 4.0 Human Capital Initiative will help companies deploy and scale their Industry 4.0 solutions.

For example, they can find the right partners to help businesses roll out customised solutions, and train, upskill or reskill their workers.

The Industry 4.0 Human Capital Initiative is a programme run by Workforce Singapore and the Singapore Business Federation.

JTC chief executive Tan Boon Khai said his corporation aims to help more firms embark on digitalisation and capture new growth opportunities in Singapore and the region.

JTC chief executive Tan Boon Khai (left) and AMTA chairman Lee Kok Choy speaking at the launch of JTC's Industry Connect Office @ Jurong Innovation District on Nov 16, 2021. ST PHOTO: GIN TAY

"The new collaboration with AMTA will strengthen our network of Industry 4.0 partners, and serves as a significant milestone to drive the next phase of business transformation," he noted.

Mr Lee Kok Choy, who is AMTA chairman, added: "To strengthen Singapore's competitiveness in manufacturing, we have to embrace Industry 4.0 leading to advanced manufacturing."

Join ST's Telegram channel here and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.