News

  • Digital in 2019

    We Are Social
    February 2019

    Digital in 2019

    We Are Social
    February 2019

    A million new internet users came online every day in 2018 – 11 people per second.

    We Are Social and Hootsuite’s Digital 2019 report finds in the past year social media use also jumped almost 9% to nearly 3.5 billion people.

    To read the full report, please click here

  • Southeast Asia eclipses China as world's mobile economy hot spot

    Nikkei Asian Review
    February 2019

    Southeast Asia eclipses China as world's mobile economy hot spot

    Nikkei Asian Review
    February 2019

    Southeast Asians are outpacing the Chinese in embracing the mobile economy, with higher percentages of the population in several countries using smartphones to do their banking, to shop and hail rides.

    China may be home to giant e-tailers like Alibaba Group Holding, but Indonesia has the world’s highest mobile e-commerce penetration rate, a new report reveals. Thailand leads the way in mobile banking penetration, while Singapore is ride-hailing central – two fields in which China doesn’t even crack the top five.

    To read the full article, please click here

  • Tech firms pledge training for ASEAN workers

    Bangkok Post
    November 2018

    Tech firms pledge training for ASEAN workers

    Bangkok Post
    November 2018

    Microsoft, Google and other major technology companies have promised to help provide training in digital skills for around 20 million people in Southeast Asia by 2020 to make sure the region’s burgeoning working-age population is a fit for the future job market.

    Up to 28 million full-time jobs are subject to being displaced, according to a new estimate.

    The World Economic Forum think tank announced details Monday of what it calls its “ASEAN Digital Skills Vision 2020” initiative to improve the technological capacity within the 10-nation group with training, funds for scholarships, internships and shaping the curricula of technology and computing courses, among other measures.

    The WEF also issued the announcement in Thai.

    To read the full article, please click here

  • Singapore Fintech Festival: Three Key Downloads

    Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
    November 2018

    Singapore Fintech Festival: Three Key Downloads

    Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
    November 2018

    The line-up at the world’s largest Fintech event was jammed with workshops, exhibitions and keynote speakers. Hosted in Singapore, the festival highlights Fintech opportunities in the ASEAN region.

    With over 250 speakers, 450 exhibitors and around 40,000 participants attending, and key topics including AI in Finance, Cyber Security, Tech Risk and the Future of Money, many experienced a data overload.

    Find the three key downloads and lots more information here

  • Microsoft reveals 2020 digital skills vision for ASEAN

    Channel Asia Singapore
    November 2018

    Microsoft reveals 2020 digital skills vision for ASEAN

    Channel Asia Singapore
    November 2018

    Pledge comes after the World Economic Forum launched the ASEAN Digital Skills Vision 2020.

    Microsoft has pledged to provide 15,000 university students with internship opportunities, deliver digital skills training to 2.2 million SME employees and to hire 8,500 digital workers by 2020 across ASEAN.

    The pledge comes after the World Economic Forum (WEF) launched the ASEAN Digital Skills Vision 2020, which aims to equip 20 million ASEAN workers with digital skills and opportunities in the next two years.

    As the impact of the fourth industrial revolution takes root such initiatives are increasingly important in mounting efforts to tackle the growing employment and skilling challenges associated with these trends.

    Read the full article here

  • Singapore Technology Trade Mission Report

    Department for International Trade
    October 2018

    Singapore Technology Trade Mission Report

    Department for International Trade
    October 2018

    The technology sector team in the UK & Singapore delivered the largest cohort of UK technology companies to Singapore from 22-23rd October for 1-2-1 commercial discussions with international partners. The mission focused on 4 technology verticals, HealthTech, Deep Tech, Smart Cities and Cyber Security. DIT delivered 270 B2B meetings for 28 companies, as well as access to relevant government departments, investors and local business support.

    Singapore Technology Trade Mission Report

  • Malaysia Technology Trade Mission Report

    Department for International Trade
    October 2018

    Malaysia Technology Trade Mission Report

    Department for International Trade
    October 2018

    Following the mega-mission to Malaysia in 2017 with 40+ UK companies involved, DIT ran a focused mission with 9 UK companies pitching to key partners across 4 industry verticals (Telecoms, Banking, Oil & Gas and Healthcare). DIT adopted a targeted approach to recruitment and partner selection to ensure quality/relevance throughout the delegation with the goal of increasing the ratio of meetings to export wins/commercial opportunities.

    Malaysia Technology Trade Mission Report

  • UK Tech Mission Singapore 2018

    Department for International Trade
    October 2018

    UK Tech Mission Singapore 2018

    Department for International Trade
    October 2018

    As the new Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Asia-Pacific, it is my pleasure to welcome you to the largest ever connecting event for British tech companies and potential partners in Singapore.

    The Department for International Trade has carefully selected companies with a wealth of expertise in the most in-demand areas of technology in Singapore: Artificial intelligence; cyber security; data analytics; health tech; and smart cities. With more than 30 companies on this mission, we have the technology to enable you to make better HR decisions and speed up due diligence and compliance reviews; reduce account fraud and data theft; secure your networks and mobile applications; personalise healthcare; create autonomous fleets of vehicles and drones and monitor smart networks.

    The UK’s strengths in all of these areas of technology flow from our universities and research capabilities, our incubators and accelerators and our great technology companies, from start-ups and SMEs through to multinationals. The UK is home to some of the world’s strongest university research groups in AI such as Cambridge, Edinburgh, Oxford and UCL, and has 17 academic centres of excellence in cyber security. We’re also the leading European destination for international tech investors.

    According to data from Pitchbook, between June 2016 and June 2018, UK tech companies received over £5 billion in VC funding – more than France (£1.55bn), Germany (£2.15bn) and Sweden (£644m) combined.

    Continuing to grow and develop the UK’s tech sector is a key strand of our modern Industrial Strategy and a personal priority for me as Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner. It will deliver more, better-paid jobs, not just in the UK but for our partners around the world. We’re investing heavily to ensure the UK remains at the forefront of innovation including a new AI sector deal worth almost £1 billion, with nearly £300m of private sector investment.

    This commitment to the sector provides funding for PhDs and Masters, the creation of prestigious Turing Fellowships, and support for AI firms to export globally. There are strong areas of synergy between the UK’s Industrial Strategy and Singapore’s Committee for the Future Economy, and many of UK areas of focus, from AI to the future of transport and cities, as well as how we manage our ageing society, are areas shared with Singapore.

    DIT is here to support the development of new partnerships between the UK and Singapore and we are excited to see what opportunities will emerge this week.

    The team will be on hand to answer any questions about this event.

    I look forward to meeting you this week.

    Natalie Black
    Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Asia-Pacific

    To read the full article, please click here

  • AI businesses on the rise in ASEAN

    Bangkok Post
    October 2018

    AI businesses on the rise in ASEAN

    Bangkok Post
    October 2018

    Singapore is one of the Southeast Asian countries aiming to be a leader and business centre in artificial intelligence (AI) in line with its industrial transformation policy.

    To read the full article, please click here

  • GREAT Festival of Innovation

    Department of International Trade

    GREAT Festival of Innovation

    Department of International Trade
  • Technology High Value Campaign in Malaysia

    August 2018

    Technology High Value Campaign in Malaysia

    August 2018

    Malaysia has already built a strong foundation it can use to accelerate the development of a digital economy in Southeast Asia. The country ranks as the 24th easiest economy to do business in, putting Malaysia second only to Singapore in Southeast Asia and fifth in Asia-Pacific. The improvement of Malaysia’s overall distance to frontier (DTF) by 0.96 to 78.43 in 2017 from 77.47 in 2016, which refers to the best-performing country across the world proves that Malaysia is on track to becoming a developed country on the back of the resilient economy.

    Solid Information and Communications Technology (ICT) application and adoption base as well as its exertion to streamline Science and Technology (S&T) initiatives, coupled with using the digital economy as the driver for further economic prosper. Under the Government Transformation Programme (GTP) and Economic Transformation Programme (ETP), ICT and S&T are included as part of the country’s five-year plan that will run from 2015 – 2020.

    Upholding the spirit of the digitalised economy as announced by the Prime Minister back in 2017, Malaysia’s GDP is expected to enjoy over £56bn revenue from the digital economy industry alone by the year 2020. Strong government agencies involvement such as the Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MiGHT) and Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) help to carve out a strategic framework in addressing the country’s aspiration in the digital economy.

    The Malaysian government is also making it easy for businesses in the country to shift to a digital economy by supporting them in three main thrusts; infrastructure, incentives and talent.

    Development of DIT and MDEC Strong Technology Partnership

    In 2015, the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) was about to drop the UK as a priority market for technology in favour of Japan. Working collaboratively with the Technology Team at HQ, the Malaysia Technology Team proactively developed and successfully delivered a strategy to retain priority status, at the same time also achieving priority status for what previously had been an emerging sector.

    This was followed up with an imaginative, integrated campaign, which generated our first technology export wins and a robust, validated pipeline of projects. Highlights include:

    June – MoU signed with MDEC, witnessed by our Trade Envoy. Immediately followed by a visit to the UK by MDEC (led by Malaysia) taking in the Northern Powerhouse and London Technology Week. The latter included an intensive series of over 40 1-2-1 meetings, drawing on HQ’s innovative Company Support Programme.

    September – webinar series on opportunities in 5 priority sub-sectors, attracting over 150 attendees; and keynote speaker slots at BIGIT on cyber forensics and Future Fifty Programme, drawing on funding from S&I Team.

    November – UK delegation visited KL for an intensive 3-day programme of seminars, pitching sessions and over 80 1-2-1 sessions. Company feedback described this as “the most business-focused ever”.

    December – a visit to the UK by MDEC CEO (led by Malaysia Technology Team), including agreements signed with PGI, FCC and Salford University.

    The programme attracted significant, positive, media coverage in Malaysia and the UK, including Astro Awani, BBC, Sky News and the Telegraph. In addition, Shuba’s proactive Twitter coverage resulted in DIT Malaysia trending on three separate occasions. As a result, investment from 10 UK companies in Malaysia recorded over £55mn in 2016, while exports from 68 UK companies amounted to £732mn in the same year. To build momentum, HQ and Post jointly developed the UK Mega tech Mission to be delivered in the 2017/18 financial year.

    Mega Technology Trade Mission to Malaysia – 9 to 11 October 2017

    DIT organised an innovative mega technology trade mission to Malaysia visiting both Kuala Lumpur and Johor State. Led by Liam Maxwell, National Technology Adviser to HM Government, the mission comprised 40 of the UK’s leading technology companies: the largest-ever UK technology delegation to visit Malaysia. Working closely with 17 local strategic partners, DIT hosted over 750 business matching sessions, involving over 150 Malaysian businesses, over three days. Two partnerships between Malaysian and UK businesses were announced during the mission and a further 10 businesses are anticipating export wins within six months.

  • Call to Boost Cyber Security in the Philippines

    Oxford Business Group
    July 2018

    Call to Boost Cyber Security in the Philippines

    Oxford Business Group
    July 2018

    The Philippines needs to do more to guard against the threat of cyber attacks, according to a new report, though both the private and public sectors are moving to reduce risks and bolster security systems.

    Released in May by research and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, the “Understanding the Cybersecurity Threat Landscape in Asia-Pacific: Securing the Modern Enterprise in a Digital World” report found the country could endure up to US$3.5 billion in direct, indirect and induced losses from breaches to cybersecurity.

    The study, which was commissioned by Microsoft and surveyed 1,300 business and IT decision-makers from 13 markets within the region, found that while 52 per cent of companies featured in the report had either experienced or suspected a cyber attack, 79 per cent of firms had already deployed or were actively looking to deploy artificial intelligence to counter security breaches.

    In the past the Philippines underspent on cybersecurity, making it a relatively soft target in the ASEAN region, according to Ernesto Alberto, executive vice-president and chief revenue officer of telecommunications firm PLDT, and CEO of its digital solutions subsidiary ePLDT, in conversation with OBG.

    In 2017 the country spent 0.04 per cent of its GDP on cyber security, compared to the ASEAN annual average of 0.07 per cent, according to a report by AT Kearney.

    However, risk awareness is growing, as evidenced by the increasing number of defensive measures initiated by the public and private sectors.

    “As one of the principal cyberattacked countries internationally, significant resources and building capability have already been invested to help enterprises address cybersecurity and protect against these attacks, which include hacks, security malware and viruses,” Alberto told OBG.

    One solution to cyber threats is cloud computing, which is increasing in popularity, with a growing number of public and private organisations moving to adopt a cloud-first policy.

    “As cyber threats become more sophisticated, organisations need to know that it will be safer to use the cloud as opposed to relying on traditional forms of IT,” Hans Bayaborda, managing director of Microsoft Philippines, told OBG.

    This shift in perception has been bolstered by government initiatives, particularly with the launch of GovCloud – an online portal for information, transactions and services – by the Department of Information Communication Technology in 2013.

    More recent efforts towards cloud computing fall under the government’s broader National Cybersecurity Plan 2020, launched in 2017, which aims to reduce risks through a four-pronged approach, including the protection of critical information infrastructure, government networks, supply chains and individuals.

    In the private sphere, the importance of upgrading cybersecurity is paramount for Philippine companies that trade or provide services to the EU following recent changes to the union’s data protection law.

    Introduced at the end of May, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requires organisations dealing with EU citizens to reassess their data-processing customs and set up safeguards that meet the standards set by the regulation.

    As the GDPR is applicable to all companies that do business in or with the EU, the Philippines is required to meet the new data protection standards. Failure to comply may result in a financial penalty and a potential ban from trading within the EU.

    Sectors that could be affected by the GDPR compliance requirements include retail, tourism, healthcare and financial services, according to a recent study by cybersecurity solutions firm Forient.

    While the GDPR could create compliance hurdles for Philippine companies and agencies, it may also provide opportunities.

    Organisations that meet the regulatory requirements could promote their compliance as a feature of their services, making them more attractive to consumers or clients from the EU.

    To achieve this, local firms will need to step up investments in cybersecurity to boost their business credentials.

    The Frost & Sullivan report found that only 25 per cent of Filipino respondents viewed higher levels of spending on cybersecurity as a business differentiator.

    The upgraded EU rules could also have a flow-on effect for the Philippines, prompting regulators to strengthen the country’s own compliance requirements.

    If so, this would create further opportunities for service providers, with an increase in demand for cybersecurity products and technology.

    This Philippines economic update was produced by Oxford Business Group.

  • Transcript of Opening Address

    Singapore’s Minister for Foreign Affairs
    July 2018

    Transcript of Opening Address

    Singapore’s Minister for Foreign Affairs
    July 2018

    Excellencies, National Representatives, Chief Smart City Officers, my colleague Minister of State Zaqy Mohamad from the Ministry of National Development, Ladies and Gentlemen,

    Welcome. I bid you all a warm welcome to Singapore, as well as to the Inaugural ASEAN Smart Cities Network Meeting. To be honest with you, I was surprised when I was told that we were going to have such a large audience today. I thought this was just going to be a small cosy group of geeks and planners. But as you can see if you look around — if you look at the people beside you, you will find that in fact, it is a very diverse group of people here. And I think this is as it should be. It reflects that this is a significant milestone for Singapore’s ASEAN Chairmanship calendar, in addition to a culmination of many months of work by numerous officials, staff and the private sector from all our ASEAN Member States, including our partner countries.

    Our 2018 Chairmanship themes of “Resilience” and “Innovation” recognise that we are living in a very special inflexion time in our history when we have to prepare ourselves — and prepare ourselves in a hurry — for a time of both opportunity and challenges. There are two key mega-trends that all of us in ASEAN are facing. The two key trends are first, the process of urbanisation, and second, digitalisation. Let me give you some numbers to flesh these two points out.

    90 million more people within ASEAN are expected to urbanise by 2030. In fact, if you look beyond ASEAN at a global level, for the first time in human history, about five years ago, more than half of all human beings lived in the city as opposed to the countryside. Within ASEAN, what we call ‘middleweight cities’ — these are cities with a population of between 200,000 to 2 million — these are the cities that will drive 40 per cent of our region’s growth. This process of rapid urbanisation will proceed, and in fact, will accelerate.

    The point is this: urbanisation proceeds not because the government says so, but because our citizens are voting with their feet. They choose voluntarily to come to the city, and you have to ask yourself why. They come to the city because the cities are a focal point of opportunities, of jobs, of education, of interaction, of mobilisation. The fact that people are voting with their feet and gravitating to the cities also means immediately that all cities, especially those within ASEAN, are confronting multiple challenges: congestion, water, air quality, the urban-rural divide, security of citizens and safety. These are common challenges that all of us throughout ASEAN will face.

    In addition to that — for those of you who are planners — transport, transportation systems, housing and IT networks are already feeling the strain of this migration into the city. At the same time, the other trend that we are all aware of is that we are still in the early phase of a digital revolution. The buzzwords you hear nowadays — Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, robotics — these are not just buzzwords that the IT companies are using to sell or to market to us. These are fundamental platforms that are going to transform the way we live, work and play. We need to get ahead of this curve, primarily because we need to ensure that our citizens will continue to have access to good jobs, good pay; that they will be able to feel that this revolution benefits them, benefits families, benefits their children for the future, and is not a marketing ploy by the IT companies alone.

    The key challenge that all of us as societies, as countries, and as cities will face, is that we have to identify the key technological platforms — the solutions that will help us resolve the current challenges we have in dealing with urbanisation; that will help us improve the delivery of public services; that will improve the quality of life of our citizens in a very real way — at home, in the marketplace, in the job sites — and at the same time create new opportunities, including preparing our citizens to harvest these new opportunities that will arise.

    Our region’s online population is expanding by 124,000 new users every day. Think about that — 124,000 new users every day are coming online. And we believe that this pace will continue for the next five years. What all this means is that there is extra urgency for us to cope with this challenge and to roll out our digital agenda. In fact, there have been some estimates that the implementation of the digital agenda will add USD 1 trillion to our region’s GDP over the next ten years. To put that USD 1 trillion in context, ASEAN’s combined GDP now is USD 2.5 trillion. So we are talking about a substantial expansion in ASEAN’s GDP, just driven by technology and the digitalisation process alone.

    Do not forget that the other key characteristic of ASEAN that gives us a comparative advantage is that 60 per cent of our population is below the age of 35. So we live in a region with many young people, and almost all those young people have, or will have, a smartphone in their hands or in their pockets. We, therefore, need to seize this opportunity to pioneer the development of new digital services, new digital jobs; and to equip both young and seniors within our society with the necessary digital skills.

    For Singapore’s ASEAN Chairmanship, we realised very early on that we needed to find the right recipe to make all this happen — and to make all this happen not just within Singapore. Singapore is just a city-state with a single layer of government, so in a sense, that’s easier to achieve. But I wanted to focus specifically today on the paradigm which we offer to this approach for digitalisation within ASEAN.

    I wanted to make two points within the ASEAN context. Two keywords — the first word is interoperability; the second word is integrated services. So just bear these two words in mind as I try to explain them in the rest of my speech: interoperability and integrated services.

    Finding the right recipe is essential, especially in a unique association and organisation like ASEAN. We are not the United States of America. We are not the EU. We are a voluntary association consisting of ten countries, with great diversity in size, in developmental potential, in infrastructure, in financing capability, in economic and political models. This diversity within ASEAN is a key distinguishing feature of our association compared with other regional groupings. Therefore, finding the right recipe to allow us to move forward together, and yet recognise our diversity, is crucial. That is why we believe that these two points of interoperability and integrated services should be defining characteristics of the ASEAN Smart Cities Network.

    Let me try to put this in context because the launch of the ASEAN Smart Cities Network actually represents an unprecedented approach to the way we usually do things in ASEAN. Let me give you three ways in which our pursuit of the ASEAN Smart Cities Network is unique.

    First, we are building a regional ecosystem that will synergise the efforts of individual ASEAN Member states in this development.

    The second thing that is different about our approach is that this is the first time ASEAN is using a cities-level mechanism. Traditionally, we have operated on the basis that ASEAN has ten member states, and we operate government-to-government.  This is the first time we are looking at cities within ASEAN directly engaging one another in order to pursue the ASEAN agenda.

    The third way this approach is different is that usually, within ASEAN, we talk about the three pillars: the political-security pillar, the economic pillar, and the socio-cultural pillar. This time, when we talk about cities, and especially when we engage governors, mayors and city planners — the difference often between a mayor and say a President or a Prime Minister, is that the mayor, to use a Singapore dialect colloquial term, is ‘bao kah liao’. Everything is your problem. You can’t say “No, this is not my problem.” Whether it is cleanliness, environment, jobs, traffic — everything is your problem. So the mayor or the governor of a city or a region, by definition, has to take an integrated approach to solving challenges and to fulfilling the expectations of the people.

    So again, in the launch of our ASEAN Smart Cities Network, we are eschewing the traditional pillars by which ASEAN approaches and assesses initiatives, and we are taking an integrated approach by working directly with the cities concerned. We hope that this mechanism — if we can execute it properly — will facilitate cooperation between smart cities through the sharing of best practices and developing action plans. In fact, I should say that apart from sharing best practices, we should also share mistakes, because there is more to be learnt from other people’s mistakes and avoiding them, than from just looking and admiring successes.

    We also hope that this effort will help to catalyse bankable projects in order to attract private sector finance. Equally, we also hope that assembling this Smart Cities Network will help us to secure funding and support from ASEAN’s external partners. And I think we have made a good start. The fact that so many of you are here; the fact that you represent not just diverse ASEAN countries but different sectors within our society, is a very promising sign.

    When my Prime Minister first proposed the ASEAN Smart Cities Network initiative during the 31st ASEAN Summit in November 2017, many of our partners — both within and outside our region — were very supportive, and were very enthusiastic very rapidly. The ASEAN Member States quickly nominated multiple pilot cities, and we settled on an initial batch of 26 cities — though I will say that we are not going to stop at 26; we will expand with time.

    We want to encourage each of these 26 to develop their action plans and to set out their own priorities. These 26 pilot cities came together in Singapore within a month of the establishment of the Smart Cities Network, when we convened an ASEAN Smart Cities Governance Workshop. You saw on the video just now some of the robust discussions that occurred, and one of the key things which we needed to settle was to establish a framework. It may seem trivial, but even arriving at a definition of a smart city is not an easy task because there is no globally accepted definition of what constitutes a smart city.

    At the same time, we don’t want a “smart city” to just be a label — everyone just sticks it on and uses it as a marketing tool. No. We wanted some serious discussion within that framework to define what we believe is a real, functional smart city.

    We also made good progress during the workshop on developing city-specific action plans, and these will guide our plans until at least until 2025. Like all plans in the digital age, you can have a 5-year plan, a 10-year plan, but you know as well as I do that every year, this plan needs to be reviewed. Just as importantly, it has also been an opportunity for us to network; so far, I think we have networked with over 60 global partners to discuss potential partnerships as we launch these projects.

    Today, just two months after the Leaders’ agreement, the network is close to finalising the framework that I talked about just now, and also the city-specific action plans of the 26 pilot cities. These frameworks and action plans will be exhibited; I think there is an exhibition just outside which we will all get to take a stroll through later on, and we will leave the exhibition on for the duration of the World Cities Summit. The action plans reflect the inclusive nature of our network, and one of the project proposals I want to highlight is the idea of a ‘smart kampung’ by Banyuwangi, Indonesia. I think those who speak Bahasa will immediately understand that — ‘smart kampung’. It aims to improve access to public services for villagers and encourage them to sell their products on the digital online market. The reason why I wanted to highlight their project is that many times when you think about the digital revolution, you think in terms of IT companies; you think in terms of large MNCs; you think in terms of the big megalithic, monolithic companies. But in fact, the real payback from the digital revolution is to expand opportunities for individual farmers, hawkers, handicraft makers; people in every village being able to access a global market and similarly consumers in all cities to be able to access organic, safe, unique, wonderful and customised products.

    In the last Industrial Revolution, it was the age of mass production. Competitive advantage was derived from economies of scale. Today, in this new age of Artificial Intelligence, robotics, 3D manufacturing, and complex logistics chains, we may be ending the age of mass production and entering the age of mass customisation. In a sense, for a region as diverse, as talented, and as culturally well-endowed as ASEAN, this is an age which should give all of us many new opportunities; as we exit the age of mass production and enter the age of mass customisation — where culture, language, art, craft and all those other aesthetic skills become even more valuable, rather than commoditised routine products where everything looks the same all over the world.

    What is also exciting, I wanted to highlight, is that not only has there been passion and enthusiasm within ASEAN, but we have also seen very rapid and encouraging support outside ASEAN. For instance, Australia announced an AUD 30 million dollar ASEAN-Australia Smart Cities initiative — this was announced in March this year. And in fact this morning — you see there is a table there with two pens — there are going to be five agreements signed amongst ASEAN cities, solution providers and external partners that will further our goals and our objectives.

    I’m very happy also to acknowledge that today’s event was developed in partnership with Temasek Foundation Connects. You may have heard of Temasek, which is our sovereign wealth fund, but there is a Temasek Foundation which goes beyond the fiscal and financial objectives and looks into community development beyond the shores of just Singapore alone. This partnership with Temasek Foundation Connects serves to kickstart the sustainable development of our regional ecosystem; I’m very grateful for their support for this cross-sectoral collaboration and involvement in the ASEAN Smart Cities Network. I want to encourage our ASEAN external partners, including especially the private sector solution providers, the academics and all relevant stakeholders, to continue to engage with this network. This is going to be an exhilarating ride. Developing the right partnerships is not necessarily an easy task, but it is an essential task. And I want to commend the National Representatives and Chief Smart City Officers — I know you can’t do this alone, but by working together we can make something happen, and make something that is relevant and timely take off.

    Let me close again by celebrating the spirit of innovation, and also coming back to my two keywords of interoperability and integration. Interoperability is very much an ASEAN concept. Because we are diverse, we will not impose a monolithic system on everyone. Whether you talk about e-payments, or planning, or logistics, I do not believe that there will be a single dominant system across ASEAN. Each of us will have our national systems, but our national systems will be interoperable. Similarly, when you deal with the needs and demands of our citizens, they want integrated services. They don’t really care exactly how or who or which channel is delivering it; they want products and services which meet their needs on a daily basis, in a comprehensive and integrated way.

    I believe if we can set our agenda right, implement our plans well, bear in mind the unique competitive advantages of ASEAN, continue to integrate our services and yet ensure that we continue to have unique, relevant national plans that allow us to interoperate with one another – I think we will be well-poised for the future.

    Thank you all very much for your presence and support.

    See press release here.

  • UK-Malaysia Technology Partnership

    Department for International Trade
    June 2018

    UK-Malaysia Technology Partnership

    Department for International Trade
    June 2018

    In 2015, the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) was about to drop the UK as a priority market for technology in favour of Japan. Working collaboratively with the Technology Team at HQ, the Malaysia Technology Team proactively developed and successfully delivered a strategy to retain priority status, at the same time also achieving priority status for what previously had been an emerging sector.

    This was followed up with an imaginative, integrated campaign, which generated our first technology export wins and a robust, validated pipeline of projects. Highlights include:

    June – MoU signed with MDEC, witnessed by our Trade Envoy. Immediately followed by a visit to the UK by MDEC (led by Malaysia) taking in the Northern Powerhouse and London Technology Week. The latter included an intensive series of over 40 1-2-1 meetings, drawing on HQ’s innovative Company Support Programme.

    September – Webinar series on opportunities in 5 priority sub-sectors, attracting over 150 attendees; and keynote speaker slots at BIGIT on cyber forensics and Future Fifty Programme, drawing on funding from S&I Team.

    November – UK delegation visited KL for an intensive 3-day programme of seminars, pitching sessions and over 80 1-2-1 sessions. Company feedback described this as “the most business-focused ever”.

    December – A visit to the UK by MDEC CEO (led by Malaysia Technology Team), including agreements signed with PGI, FCC and Salford University.

    The programme attracted significant, positive, media coverage in Malaysia and the UK, including Astro Awani, BBC, Sky News and the Telegraph. In addition, Shuba’s proactive Twitter coverage resulted in DIT Malaysia trending on three separate occasions. As a result, investment from 10 UK companies in Malaysia recorded over £55mn in 2016, while exports from 68 UK companies amounted to £732mn in the same year. To build momentum, HQ and Post jointly developed the UK Mega tech Mission to be delivered in the 2017/18 financial year.

    UK-Malaysia Technology Partnership

  • Information Paper on the ASEAN Smart Cities Governance Workshop

    May 2018

    Information Paper on the ASEAN Smart Cities Governance Workshop

    May 2018

    Singapore’s Centre for Liveable Cities and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs co-organised the inaugural ASEAN Smart Cities Governance Workshop (SCGW) in Singapore from 22 to 25 May 2018. Over the course of the four-day workshop, the ASCN’s pioneer batch of cities made good progress on developing city-specific Action Plans for smart city development till 2025, had robust discussions on the draft ASEAN Smart Cities Framework, and networked with global partners from both the public and private sectors to discuss potential collaboration on commercially viable projects.

    You may download the Information Paper here.

  • DIT Malaysian Technology Update

    Department for International Trade
    March 2018

    DIT Malaysian Technology Update

    Department for International Trade
    March 2018

    DIT Technology Update

    March 2018 – Technology is Reaching New Heights in Malaysia

    DIT scoping synergies with new stakeholders. DIT (Technology) has been carrying out active scoping exercise with key technology stakeholders in Malaysia, ranging from government ministries, agencies, existing UK MNCs in the market and the private sector. The rationale behind this is to explore areas for future collaboration for the technology campaign in Malaysia for 2018/19 and beyond. Approaching these new key stakeholders brings a new dimension for DIT in paving its strategy for forwarding engagement with new stakeholders. To date, over 40 meetings have been conducted as part of the exercise, which has delivered substantial results:

    Invitation to sign MoU with Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) Malaysia

    A Visit to Cyber Security Malaysia and MIMOS facility

    Identify more business opportunities for UK companies in the market using tech as an enabler in various Malaysia’s key National Key Economic Areas (NKEAs)

    Strategy Paper to enhance Malaysia’s offerings.

    As part of our initiative to drive higher business collaboration and partnerships between the UK and Malaysia, DIT is working closely with Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) and other key government stakeholders to come up with a new strategy paper in highlighting Malaysia’s technology offerings to the UK. This strategic paper aims to corroborate our campaign in reaching out to the technology masses in the UK. In addition to addressing the technology gap in Malaysia which the UK technology provider can identify from the written paper.

    From UK Mega Tech Mission to CHOGM. A round of success for UK technology companies during the UK Mega Tech Mission in 2017 has landed them an opportunity at the Commonwealth Head of Government Meetings (CHOGM) where two of the participating companies’ business deals will be announced as part of CHOGM wider engagement with international businesses.

    Kino-Mo: Product distributing agreement on 3D Hologram units

    Commissum: Setting up operation in Malaysia as a fully fledged MSC status company

    Forward Activities

    Continuation of scoping exercise with identified stakeholders (April 2018)

    UK Technology Roadshow (May/June 2018)

    Webinar – Technology as an Enabler in Malaysia’s Digital Economy (May 2018)

    Key Contacts

    Shuba Karun, Senior Trade Manager (Technology)
    shuba.karun@fco.gov.uk
    +603 2170 2252

    Alia Jaafar, Trade Manager (Technology)
    alia.jaafar@fco.gov.uk
    +603 2170 2240

    Nanee Muniandy, Assistant Trade Manager (Technology)
    naneecharam.muniandy@fco.gov.uk
    +603 2170 2251

  • Soft Launches UK Mega Tech Mission to Malaysia

    Press Coverage
    October 2017