13 new members for Future Economy Council

Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat (foreground), who chairs the Future Economy Council, with fellow council members, including Manpower Minister Josephine Teo and Senior Parliamentary Secretary Low Yen Ling, on a tour of the SingPost Regional eCommerce
Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat (foreground), who chairs the Future Economy Council, with fellow council members, including Manpower Minister Josephine Teo and Senior Parliamentary Secretary Low Yen Ling, on a tour of the SingPost Regional eCommerce Logistics Hub yesterday.PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

Younger ministers, industry experts among new faces to help chart direction of economy

The committee that charts the direction of Singapore's economy and seeks the transformation of major industries has added 13 new faces into its ranks.

The additions, who include younger ministers and private sector leaders, have expanded the Future Economy Council's leadership team from 31 to 33, it was announced yesterday.

They replace outgoing former ministers Lim Hng Kiang and Lim Swee Say, Central Singapore District Mayor Denise Phua and other private sector experts.

The 13 new members include younger ministers Desmond Lee, Indranee Rajah and Ng Chee Meng; Nanyang Technological University president Subra Suresh and National University of Singapore president Tan Eng Chye; Khoo Teck Puat Hospital chief executive Chew Kwee Tiang, National Trades Union Congress assistant secretary-general Desmond Choo and Dr Azlinda Anwar of Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory.

The newcomers from the private sector are Mr Alexander Hungate of Sats, Mr Amos Leong of Univac Group, Mr Andreas Sohmen-Pao of BW Group, Ms Teo Lay Lim of Accenture Singapore and Mr Wahab Yusoff of Forescout Technologies.

The new members were picked after consultations with various bodies representing the Government, unions, trade associations and chambers, industry, and educational and training institutions.

Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat, who chairs the council, said: "We want to make sure that the members can complement one another, contribute fresh perspectives and at the same time, spread the message of transformation."

FRESH PERSPECTIVES

We want to make sure that the members can complement one another, contribute fresh perspectives and at the same time spread the message of transformation.

FINANCE MINISTER HENG SWEE KEAT, on the Future Economy Council.

The new council met for the first time yesterday at the SingPost Regional eCommerce Logistics Hub in Greenwich Drive, Tampines. Mr Heng told the media after a tour of the hub that the national industry transformation effort, which comprises 23 key economic sectors from logistics to financial services, has seen "encouraging progress in many sectors".

"If you look at the overall productivity growth last year, it was 4.5 per cent, the highest that we have had in seven years. This is a very major change," he said.

Accenture's Ms Teo said the rules of industry have changed as competition has become faster and more agile with technology.

 
 

Re-appointed member Kenneth Loo, the president of the Singapore Contractors Association, said he hopes that associations like his can bring more to the table.

He said: "In today's context, we cannot work in silos. We have to work across, not only within my sector. That is how we can transform the industry."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 17, 2018, with the headline '13 new members for Future Economy Council'. Print Edition | Subscribe