China’s one belt one road (OBOR) initiative was first
unveiled in 2013 by President Xi Jinping with aims to build international
relationships and strengthen overseas markets. A network of pipelines, railways
and maritime routes will be created through this initiative. This will allow a
flow of goods, labor and capitals between continents in Asia, Africa and
Europe. Expected to be able to cover over one-third of the global GDP, it seeks
to create one of the largest platform for economic cooperation. This project
has the potential to connect billions of people, through building of
infrastructure and boosting trade ties.
Singapore and China have strong bilateral
relationships in trade and investments. Singapore companies are also familiar
in doing business with countries that are involved in OBOR. It is no doubt that
the Singapore government share the same interest with China in introducing
economic growth, infrastructure development and bilateral ties. As soon as the
initiative was introduced, Singapore companies have been searching for
opportunities and collaboration with Chinese companies in logistic and supply
and real estate developments.
2.Singapore capabilities to capture opportunity
Singapore companies can showcase our market knowledge
and capabilities in the infrastructure, connectivity and financial services.
According to Singapore Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugan, Singapore
are highly supportive of the initiative and is well-positioned to gain from it.
Singapore is an infrastructure hub with huge expertise
across master-planning, smart city system and construction materials. The workforce
is capable of planning and operating complex infrastructure projects. Singapore
has a vast number of companies that are involve in smart city systems to expand
their expertise in building, operating and sustaining. An example of a local
company is Woh Hup Pte Ltd, Singapore’s largest privately own construction and
civil engineering specialist. Woh Hup along with other companies are involve in
building the city with environmental friendly materials that reduces pollution
and deploying sensory tracking to counter scarce resources such as waste and
energy management. Singapore is a smart city, which make use of technology as
the foundation to achieve economic sustainability.
Singapore exceptional infrastructure and connectivity
opens huge potentials for trade flows and market access to companies
internationally. The ports sector in Singapore is one of the busiest ports in
the world with global expertise in completing projects and managing ports using
automation and intelligence system for smooth and continuous operations around
the world. Housing more than 120 international shipping companies, it is a
leading ship repairs and conversion center. International imports and exports
trading plays a huge role in contributing to the country economic growth.
The aviation industry is important in so many ways,
Singapore is one of the major player in aerospace maintenance, repair and
overhaul services with companies like ST aerospace and SIA engineering. Changi
Airport is also one of Asia’s major air hub with companies that provide
expertise in solutions such as food catering and fuel logistics. The growth of
tourism industry and rapid transportation of goods and services relies so much
on the aviation companies in Singapore.
Logistic services expand together with technology and
business solutions with huge industry growth potential. Logistic helps reduce
trade costs but also connect businesses and people in the market. According to
The World Bank, Singapore tops the list in logistics performance index against
the ASEAN countries in year 2016. The logistic companies in Singapore efforts
to sustain and improve operations efficiency helps maintain the pole position
as a leading logistic hub.
c) Singapore as a
Singapore as one of the largest investor in China as
well as a place for Chinese investor. China’s one belt one road initiatives
could tap on Singapore’s financial services when Chinese company plans to
invest in Singapore markets. Singapore is a leading financial hub with a
handful of multinational companies in the country. This is due to Singapore
global recognition of a competitive, innovative and secured country. Singapore
companies are well prepared to take part in the One Belt One Road initiatives
projects with the provision of banking and finance industry in Singapore.
3.Possible Challenges Ahead Faced by Singapore Companies