The manufacturing industry contributes to a fifth of Singapore’s overall economy and it has been forecasted to fall in the coming years. According to flash estimates by the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI), manufacturing output grew by 5.5 percent in the last quarter of 2018 compared to 2017, but when compared with the third quarter, output actually fell by 8.7 percent. That being said, Chan Chun Sing, Minister for Trade and Industry has also stated that the manufacturing sector can halt the forecasted industry slowdown with the right approach.
According to Minister Chan, as the sector evolves, products manufactured will also require greater skills to produce because the industry as a whole is shifting towards the production of high-quality products at lower volumes. Thus, investing in research and development and increasing the number of foreign investors could be means to drive the growth of the industry. This can be achieved by improving Singapore’s intellectual property protection regime, which assures investors that they will be protected. To ensure greater quality products, the method in which quality assurance is conducted should also be improved and a skilled labour force is also required for expansion of the manufacturing industry. By acquiring better skill sets, employees can perform highly specialised tasks and achieve greater overall productivity. As such, systems should be put in place to produce a highly trained workforce. Furthermore, an engaging company culture will help to retain talents in the industry.
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