Future Economy Council holds first meeting with Heng as chair [The Straits Times]

The FEC oversees the implementation of recommendations outlined by the Committee on the Future Economy and earlier initiatives, including SkillsFuture.

The high-level Future Economy Council (FEC) met yesterday for the first time since Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat took over its reins from Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam in May.

The national council oversees skills and innovation efforts and was formerly known as the Council for Skills, Innovation and Productivity. It was renamed on May Day.

It oversees the implementation of recommendations outlined by the Committee on the Future Economy (CFE) earlier this year - and earlier initiatives, including SkillsFuture.

Mr Heng, who chairs the council, said in a statement last night: "We had a good meeting today, where we discussed how the FEC can enable Singaporeans to pick up and use deep skills, and support our companies to build strong capabilities to compete.

"The FEC will also promote closer cooperation between different industries, as well as between Singapore and the regional and international markets."

The council has 31 members from the Government, industry, unions, and educational and training institutions.

Six names have been added to the council since May. Among them are Mr Lawrence Wong, Minister for National Development and Second Minister for Finance; and Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister in the Prime Minister's Office and Second Minister for Manpower and Foreign Affairs.

In May, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said more ministers would be added to the FEC, "especially the younger ones".

The council now counts eight ministers among its members, not including Mr Tharman, who is an adviser to the council.

The other new additions to the team are: Mr Roland Ng, president of the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Mr Clarence Ti, principal of Ngee Ann Polytechnic; Mr Dilhan Pillay Sandrasegara, president of Temasek International; and Mr Russell Tham, regional president (South-east Asia) of Applied Materials.

Mr Pillay said: "The work of growing and transforming Singapore's economy does not stop with the CFE. The opportunity for the Future Economy Council is to translate the CFE's recommendations into actionable strategies, with the collective participation of government agencies, the business community and our unions."

Mr Tham said: "This next phase will require agile, adaptive and timely execution, with the close partnership of tripartite leaders. It is critical that we build an ecosystem where innovation is pervasive, value creation is deep and technology adoption is enabling."

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