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 the growth of Singapore’s maritime cluster, where companies could apply for grants should they wish to set up new business lines, upskill their workforce, or implement productivity- improving solutions.
First movers and pioneers are invited to testbed and develop new innovations under the PIER71 initiative and the MPA Living Lab, with the hope that these continue to draw in innovative firms and talent from all around the world. “We aim to more than triple the number of maritime tech start-ups supported under the Pier71 funding programme, from 30 to 100 by 2025,” said Mr Chee. The goal is to be the top maritime start-up hub in the world, the Silicon Valley for maritime technology.
Cleaner Greener
Maritime Singapore
Singapore has also been at the forefront of promoting the use of cleaner marine fuels, including LNG. It has been developing LNG bunkering capabilities under the LNG bunkering pilot programme. It has also partnered port administrations to establish a global network of LNG bunker-ready ports, co- funded the construction of LNG-fueled vessels, and continues to promote LNG as a cleaner, interim fuel.
On 4 January 2021, Singapore sealed its position in Asia as the first port to offer ship-to- ship LNG bunkering.
Through the SGD40 million Maritime Green Future Fund, MPA is also working with the industry and academia to develop technologies and pilot the use of alternative marine fuels and electric vessels. Through collaborations with institutes of higher learning, technology companies, and industry partners, Singapore hopes to establish itself as the Centre of Excellence for R&D for decarbonisation.
Starting with the harbour craft sector, SGD9 million has been set aside to support up to three consortiums over the next five years, under a R&D grant call to decarbonise the domestic harbour craft fleet.
On the talent front, a pipeline of maritime professionals has to be scaled-up and skilled- up to meet the demands of disruption, digitalisation and decarbonisation.
Currently, Maritime Singapore employs over 170,000 people across a diverse range of jobs under the sector.
Regardless of the pandemic situation, the maritime sector has been resilient and growing from strength to strength. The maritime sector is seeing a rise of cross-disciplinary skills in areas such as data analytics, automation and robotics.
Maritime companies are actively hiring to meet their growing operational needs. There has been a greater interest by locals to take up roles within the sector. PSA Singapore and its service providers have hired about 600 locals since August 2020. The jobs offered were frontline operational roles such as prime mover drivers and crane operators, including engineers and IT executives.
Last August, the government offered more than 200 traineeships with PSA, Jurong Port and Maersk Singapore, to new graduates under the SGUnited Traineeships Programme. The number of openings was expanded to 1,000 training slots, company attachments and traineeship opportunities on 22 October 2020. Speaking at the 10th Singapore Maritime Institute (SMI) Forum, Senior Minister of State for Transport and Foreign Affairs Chee Hong Tat said that the openings were for in- demand skills such as automation systems,

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