Singapore launched a 10 million Singapore dollars (8 million US dollars) initiative on Friday to attract and retain local talents in the medical technology industry.
The MedTech Industry Transformation Initiative, launched by Minister in the Prime Minister's Office and Second Minister for Trade and Industry S Iswaran, is a tripartite partnership involving the Workforce Development Agency, Employment and Employability Institute and the Economic and Development Board.
The initiative aims to help companies transform processes and increase the value of the jobs. It will also help improve productivity and grow a pool of skilled workforce to serve the current and future needs of the industry, Iswaran said.
Iswaran said that Singapore's medical technology industry has more than doubled its manufacturing output over the last ten years to 4.3 billion Singapore dollars in 2012.
The industry in Singapore currently employs nearly 10,000 workers, but the demand for these workers is expected to rise because of an ageing population, growing middle class and expectations of better quality medical care.
However, Iswaran also said that the industry is facing increasing competition as countries with lower cost structures build up their medical technology industries.
"For the Singapore MedTech industry to remain globally competitive, we need to differentiate ourselves in terms of innovation, quality and value," he said.
Companies will get support to enhance their operations over two years under the newly launched initiative, in the form of productivity-related consultancy and implementing productivity projects. The agencies will also attract, up-skill and train the local workforce.