Min­is­ter re­as­sures smaller com­pa­nies about IE-Spring merger

The New Paper - - BUSINESS -

The up­com­ing merger of govern­ment agen­cies IE Sin­ga­pore and Spring Sin­ga­pore will not leave smaller com­pa­nies in the lurch, Se­nior Min­is­ter of State for Trade and In­dus­try Sim Ann said yes­ter­day.

The re­as­sur­ance came at a con­ven­tion for small and medium-sized en­ter­prises (SMEs) held by the Sin­ga­pore Busi­ness Fed­er­a­tion (SBF), which pushed for a sin­gle pro-SME body in pre­vi­ous Bud­get rec­om­men­da­tions.

IE and Spring will next year join forces as En­ter­prise Sin­ga­pore to in­te­grate ca­pa­bil­i­ties and re­sources, it was an­nounced last month.

The for­mer backs Sin­ga­pore com­pa­nies’ over­seas ven­tures in line with its mis­sion to pro­mote in­ter­na­tional trade, while Spring sup­ports start-ups and SMEs in ar­eas such as fund­ing and in­no­va­tion.

“We are very cog­nisant of the wishes and the ex­pec­ta­tions that the busi­ness com­mu­nity has in­di­cated to us,” Ms Sim said while on a panel with var­i­ous SBF rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

“We want to en­sure that this for­ma­tion takes place smoothly... In the process of do­ing this merger and trans­for­ma­tion, we will en­sure that ser­vices to our SMEs re­main.”

The chair­man of the SBF-led SME Com­mit­tee, Mr Lawrence Leow, said in his wel­come ad­dress to the con­ven­tion that his com­mit­tee was “de­lighted” to see its sin­gle-body Bud­get rec­om­men­da­tion re­alised.

PHOTO: THE STRAITS TIMES

Ms Sim Ann (in green) on a panel with SBF rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

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