Singapore needs to find more niche areas for growth

June 9, 2009
Singapore Democrats

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Xinhua News

The world beyond the global economic storm will see new market dynamics and tougher competition, therefore Singapore needs to find new growth sectors and gear up for them, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said here on Tuesday.

Speaking at the opening of a vaccine manufacturing plant, Lee said that Asia is now the main growth story in the world. Many companies are looking to locate their key functions and decision makers closer to Asian markets. With more and more manufacturing and research and development taking place in the region, companies are also establishing “control towers” to better manage and coordinate their activities.

He said that one possibility is to offer Singapore to be the corporate base for global companies, both big and small.

“We need to find many more such niche areas. Then we can continue to prosper in the new world,” Lee said.

Speaking on the success of the country’s biologics manufacturing, Lee said, “Drugs are physically small but their effects are targeted and potent, and they command high value. Thatis how Singapore must be.”

He said Singapore must invest in knowledge and research and development, recruit and groom talent, and focus its efforts to excel in niche areas, so the country can transcend the limitations of physical size and punch above its weight class among the global competition.

Singapore launched an Economic Strategies Committee on May 27 to look into the country’s long-term economic transformation. The Committee aims to develop strategies to pursue global opportunities, enhance capabilities, promote inclusive growth and make the best use of finite resources for the country.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2009-06/09/content_11513765.htm