New body will link players to work on projects

Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat launched the initiative on Oct 23 at the 8th Asia-Singapore Infrastructure Roundtable.
Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat launched the initiative on Oct 23 at the 8th Asia-Singapore Infrastructure Roundtable.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

A new organisation launched yesterday will serve as a one-stop platform to bring together different players in the region's fast-developing infrastructure sector.

Besides helping different parties collaborate, Infrastructure Asia will have capacity-building workshops and training to find solutions to issues that can crop up during major projects. It will also provide advice to help improve the bankability of projects.

Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat launched the initiative yesterday at the 8th Asia-Singapore Infrastructure Roundtable.

He told the event: "Through platforms such as Infrastructure Asia, partners such as MDBs (multilateral development banks) and private capital institutions can find more efficient ways to participate in the regional infrastructure development to enable further growth in Asean and Asia."

Infrastructure Asia, which has been set up by Enterprise Singapore and the Monetary Authority of Singapore, has also inked agreements with partners that can help to bring about more projects in Asia.

It signed a memorandum of understanding with the World Bank Group to leverage networks and expertise to drive knowledge building and exchange within Asia.

Both organisations will also work together to help Asian countries strengthen capacities for infrastructure projects, including in the fields of financing and operation.

Infrastructure Asia is also partnering the Singapore Business Federation to raise awareness of project opportunities for Singapore-based companies through workshops and marketing initiatives. It will also help match firms to these development opportunities.

Mr Seth Tan Keng Hwee, executive director of Infrastructure Asia, said the organisation "will work closely with the private sector, governments, commercial and multilateral development banks to provide solutions that are customised to meet the local market's specific needs and requirements.

"We will also offer advice to relevant countries and work with them on capacity building. With better knowledge, skills and resources, we can improve project feasibility and bankability, enabling project leads to become viable commercial projects".

Sue-Ann Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 24, 2018, with the headline 'New body will link players to work on projects'. Print Edition | Subscribe