Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
1. Good morning. It gives me great pleasure to participate virtually in the third Smart China Expo, and to meet with good friends during these very extraordinary times.
2. Let me first congratulate Chongqing for organising this large-scale flagship event despite the challenging circumstances. This is testament to Chongqing’s ability to innovate and leverage digital technologies. I am glad that we have a strong participation of around 30 Singapore companies at the SCE Online e-Exhibition, with 17 Memoranda of Understanding to be signed between them and their partners.
3. COVID-19 has made ‘going digital’ central to everyday interaction. Like China and other economies, Singapore is keen to turn adversity into opportunity (让我们大家一起把危机转为商机). This is even as we explore the use of digital technologies to unlock new value and business models in every sector of our economy.
4. This includes the MICE sector - Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions. For example, it may surprise you that I am currently at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre. What is new here is the Hybrid Event Broadcast Studio. This studio was recently launched and features augmented reality and hologram functions that allow us to beam someone from a different part of the world ‘live’ into Singapore. Such technologies allow us to not only restart the MICE business, but also to build new capabilities and re-invent important sectors of our economies.
5. Singapore and Chongqing have a shared commitment to be at the forefront of digital connectivity. In fact, this is a key pillar of the Chongqing Connectivity Initiative, which is China and Singapore’s third Government-to-Government flagship project. Our collaboration has enabled Singapore’s attendance at the SCE Online today to be streamed live through the CCI International Dedicated Connectivity, which was launched just last September when Party Secretary Chen visited Singapore.
6. This afternoon, the Singapore Infocomm Media Development Authority and the Chongqing Big Data Application and Development Management Bureau will be organising the International Dedicated Connectivity Forum. Participants can find out more about how the International Dedicated Connectivity will facilitate the flow of trade, services and information between Singapore, Southeast Asia and Western China, and how it can be applied in fields such as telemedicine and financial services.
7. Digital connectivity has also enhanced physical trade and connectivity between our regions. We have worked together to make the clearance of goods more efficient along the CCI-New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor. We have done this by linking Singapore’s Networked Trade Platform and China’s National Single Window. This will make the exchange of digital trade documents between Singapore and China seamless and reduce costs for businesses.
8. I am heartened that Singapore and Chongqing are working closely to promote policy innovation in facilitating cross-border data flows. This will support new cross-border business opportunities and spur the use of new technologies to tackle challenges.
9. With the visionaries and talents gathered here today, I am confident that the Smart China Expo will uncover new opportunities for further collaboration.
10. Thank you, and I wish the Smart China Expo every success!