Speech by MOS Alvin Tan at the Singapore Computer Society Cloud Conference 2022

Speech by MOS Alvin Tan at the Singapore Computer Society Cloud Conference 2022

1. A very good morning to:
a. Dr Chong Yoke Sin, President of the Singapore Computer Society;
b. Dr. Anton Ravindran, President of the SCS Cloud Computing Chapter; and
c. All our distinguished guests who have joined us today at the SCS Cloud Conference 2022. 

Growth of digital cloud services in Singapore

2. The theme for the SCS Cloud Conference this year – “Innovating Digital Services on Cloud” – is timely. Singapore is one of the most developed public cloud markets in the Asia-Pacific region. A recent study by Boston Consulting Group expects investment in the public cloud to more than double in a span of 5 years, from US$1.5 billion in 2018 to about US$3.6 billion in 2023. 

3. This figure is just one example of how advancements in digital services have resulted in both the disruption and growth of industries. We witnessed this clearly over the past two years during COVID-19, when the adoption of cloud services and other digitalisation efforts were instrumental in helping companies achieve business continuity and respond more nimbly to the pandemic. 

4. There is no doubt that the future is digital, and I am glad to see that there has been significant traction across all industries in adopting cloud services. This is happening not just among digitally native businesses, but also among financial services institutions, retailers, and media companies. 

The government has been encouraging both the public and private sectors to adopt cloud services

5. Digital cloud services will become imperative to ensuring that both the government and businesses emerge on the right side of the digital disruption. Public sector organisations have been taking the lead by actively adopting public cloud-enabled technologies for its cloud-eligible systems to “re-engineer” and “re-design” the way the government operates. Led by the Government Technology Agency (GovTech) and Smart Nation and Digital Government Office (SNDGO), the government will continue to develop the public sector’s long-term digital capabilities and promote digital cloud adoption within government agencies. 

6. One of GovTech’s new initiatives is the Singapore Government Technology Stack (SGTS). The SGTS is a common platform which enables government agencies to build and test new apps with a suite of shared software and infrastructure services. By facilitating the exchange of data across the government, agencies will be able to improve on the consistency and quality of their applications, rather than devoting resources to building their own in-house services and infrastructure. With the greater adoption of SGTS across more government agencies, I am confident that we can expect a more seamless user experience across the spectrum of government digital services.  

7. The government has also been encouraging private sector organisations move to the cloud. Since 2017, IMDA’s SMEs Go Digital Programme has helped to support over 78,000 SMEs who are starting out on their digitalisation journey. This includes providing enterprises with easy access to step-by-step guides on how to adopt digital solutions and qualified cloud-based solutions. Such digital solutions that SMEs can adopt to increase efficiencies, lower costs, and expand their customer base internationally. In fact, the e-commerce sector in Southeast Asia alone is expected to double in size from U$170 billion in gross merchandise volume in 2021 to over U$360 billion in 2025 , with many opportunities for SMEs looking to tap on emerging regional value chains. Through adopting cloud solutions, we are confident that our SMEs will not only be able to address existing business challenges but also explore new growth opportunities. 

Singapore’s suite of Digital Economy Agreements (DEAs) will facilitate the growth of digital cloud services

8. Finally, let me take the opportunity to highlight Singapore’s suite of Digital Economy Agreements, or DEAs. As the digital world becomes increasingly interconnected, it is critical that we establish common rules and policies to address emerging digital issues and foster interoperability. Singapore’s DEAs aim to facilitate seamless end-to-end trade of digital technologies and services such as cloud services, mobile applications and AI, enable open and trusted flows and use of data, and build trust in digital systems so that opportunities arising from the digital economy can be shared by businesses big and small. 

9. I am happy to share that we will be signing our third DEA with the United Kingdom at the end of this month and look forward to signing our fourth with South Korea soon. As Singapore continues to forge strong international partnerships in the digital economy, I would like to encourage Singaporean companies looking to expand internationally to leverage on our DEAs to grow your businesses, and to adopt digital cloud services so that you may conduct seamless digital operations on off-site servers.


10. Let me conclude by thanking SCS for your efforts in encouraging the widespread adoption of cloud computing – which stands at the forefront of unleashing the next generation of technology. The government looks forward to working hand-in-hand with more organisations such as yourselves to continue positioning Singapore as a global leader in digital technologies. 

11. I wish all participants a fruitful conference ahead, and look forward to the exciting new ideas, partnerships, and opportunities that will be born from the SCS Cloud Conference. Thank you. 

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