A Singapore-EU digital agreement could help align standards for digital vaccine certs: Gan Kim Yong

The agreement could help both Singapore and European countries seize new growth opportunities in the digital economy. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A digital agreement between Singapore and the European Union could help align standards for digital vaccine certificates and so facilitate cross-border travel, said Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim Yong on Tuesday (May 25).

It could also enable mutual recognition of digital identity regimes and allow businesses to easily verify cross-border customers, said Mr Gan.

The minister was speaking at the Sweden-South-east Asia Business Reset Summit 2021 at Capella Hotel.

The agreement could help Singapore and European countries, including Sweden, seize new growth opportunities in the digital economy, which will support overall economic recovery from the pandemic, said Mr Gan.

"Emerging from the Covid-19 crisis, we need to double down on digitalisation and digital trade. These present significant opportunities for investment and development, and provide the tools needed to adapt to new ways of working, post-Covid-19," he said.

He noted that Singapore will continue to support local small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in their recovery through digitalisation.

For example, the Grow Digital initiative by the Infocomm Media Development Authority and Enterprise Singapore has helped more than 1,800 enterprises to transact on e-commerce platforms.

The initiative helps SMEs sell to overseas customers on e-commerce platforms without a need for physical presence.

To support digitalisation, Singapore is looking to work with top industry 4.0 solution providers that will enable the introduction of key technologies such as 5G network and industrial Internet of Things, said Mr Gan.

There are also opportunities for Singapore, Sweden and Swedish businesses in sustainability-related businesses, in line with the Singapore Green Plan 2030 that was unveiled in February, said the minister.

For example, demand for industrial energy efficiency solutions is growing in Singapore and in the region, and Swedish companies can seize these opportunities, he added.

Knowledge sharing between Singaporean and Swedish solar and energy storage systems companies would help facilitate research collaborations between Swedish solar energy management companies and Singapore research institutes, said Mr Gan.

"Swedish companies can use Singapore as a launchpad to trial and commercialise green technology solutions for the region," he said.

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