New government office to help grow tech sector; 10,000 new tech-related jobs expected

Minister for Communications and Information S. Iswaran said the Digital Industry Singapore office supported the establishment of tech company Grab's new headquarters here. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - An estimated 10,000 new tech-related jobs are expected in the private sector over the next three years, thanks to a new government office that will encourage public-private partnerships to help companies digitise and keep up with the rapid pace of technology.

The Digital Industry Singapore (DISG) office, announced by the Minister for Communications and Information S. Iswaran on Wednesday (June 26), will be the "first stop" for companies to seek help in digital industry-related matters.

Companies can work with this new office to secure talent and market access, build capabilities, and expand overseas.

The DISG has already begun its work, said the minister, pointing out that the office supported the establishment of tech company Grab's new headquarters here, which will house up to 3,000 employees.

Speaking at the opening of this year's Smart Nation Summit at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre at Marina Bay Sands, Mr Iswaran added: "There are several other similar projects in the DISG pipeline, which will also bring broader benefits for Singapore's digital ecosystem, including the creation of an estimated 10,000 new jobs over the next three years."

The new office is managed by the Economic Development Board (EDB), Enterprise Singapore and the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), and brings together 45 existing officers from the three agencies.

In a joint statement, they said the 10,000 new technology sector jobs to be created will be the result of the DISG's efforts, including the creation of new policies and guiding government investments in areas such as data, talent, trade and digital infrastructure.

Minister for Communications and Information S. Iswaran announced that the Digital Industry Singapore office will be the "first stop" for companies to seek help in digital industry-related matters. ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN

Said the agencies: "Beyond technology roles in engineering, software and product development, DISG expects that jobs in other functions, such as finance, human resources, innovation and business development, will also be created."

In order to prepare citizens for these new jobs, the DISG will work with IMDA, the industry and local education institutions to implement training programmes and on-the-job training.

Training will focus on areas like artificial intelligence, cyber security, data science, network engineering, software development, user experience design and product management.

The DISG will also seek to build up two aspects of the technology ecosystem: consumer technology and enterprise technology.

On the consumer technology front, it will assist companies to tap the growing Asian market to capture opportunities in areas such as ride-hailing, e-commerce, fintech and new media.

In enterprise technology, DISG will digitalise Singapore's economy to help companies build new solutions in areas such as cyber security, artificial intelligence, payments and cloud computing, and expand globally.

According to Mr Iswaran, the work of the DISG will be to create public-private partnerships by pooling together resources and share knowledge.

He said: "DISG aims to forge an innovative and multi-faceted public-private partnership model by sense-making global trends in technology, industry and policy, and tapping the combined resources and levers of government agencies overseeing industry development and regulations."

The chief digital industry officer of DISG, Mr Kiren Kumar, noted that Singapore is home to 80 of the top 100 global technology companies, as well as more than 4,000 home-grown and international start-ups from around the world.

"With the complementary networks, resources and programmes of EDB, Enterprise Singapore and IMDA coming together, DISG will seek to achieve our mission to establish Singapore as a global-Asia technology hub with deep capabilities, strong infrastructure and a vibrant ecosystem of local and global enterprises, from which new products, services, business models and partnerships are created for Asia and beyond," he said.

The Smart Nation Summit is the flagship event of the Smart Nation Innovations Week, which will be held till Friday. More than 15,000 local and international guests are attending the events during the week, which also include the Straits Digital Exchange (SDE), the Digital Government Exchange (DGX) and Innovfest Unbound.

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