Industry And Government Agencies Come Together To Recognise Pro-Enterprise Initiatives And Enhance Partnerships Towards A Pro-Enterprise Regulatory Environment
• The Pro-Enterprise Panel (PEP) celebrates 20 years of industry-public partnership in enhancing a pro-enterprise regulatory environment
• Initiatives and suggestions recognised for their contributions to a more pro-enterprise, pro-innovation regulatory environment
• Enhancing Partnerships, Empowering Businesses through the launch of the “Friends of PEP” network
Friday, 20 November 2020 [Singapore] – The Pro-Enterprise Panel (PEP) celebrated its 20th anniversary at the 2020 Pro-Enterprise Panel – Singapore Business Federation (PEP-SBF) Awards event held today. 16 awards were given out to individuals, businesses, trade associations and chambers (TACs), and public sector agencies at the event, which was held in a hybrid manner with most guests attending virtually.
The annual event recognises the industry-public sector partnership and collaborative efforts among businesses, TACs, and government agencies towards building a pro enterprise regulatory environment that supports innovation and business growth. The Guest-of-Honour (GOH) for the 2020 PEP-SBF Awards event was Minister for Trade and Industry, Mr Chan Chun Sing.
Regulatory Agility and Deeper Public-Private Partnership to Support Innovation and Enable Businesses to Emerge Stronger
In his opening address, Mr Chan highlighted the unprecedented global shifts brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, and how businesses must transform, innovate, and be prepared to pivot their operating models to adapt and take advantage of the opportunities that arise. He emphasised the heightened relevance of regulatory agility amidst the global COVID-19 situation, to enable businesses to emerge stronger through their transformation and innovation journey. Government agencies would play an important role to be nimble in reviewing rules regulations, or to set new rules and support structures to enable business growth. This would be enabled by deeper and sustained public-private sector partnerships.
This year’s awards featured several initiatives that showcased successful partnerships between industry players and government agencies to review rules or implement regulatory sandboxes in support of new business ideas.
Housing and Development Board (HDB) wins Gold Award for Supporting Innovative Business Ideas
HDB CEO Dr Cheong Koon Hean, said, “We appreciate that our retail industry partners at NTUC FairPrice and BreadTalk have stepped in to help the community in time of need. HDB and other agencies are happy to have facilitated the efforts. We are happy to note that the community, especially the elderly, has benefited from this initiative.”
The sandbox is an example of how the industry can work closely with the public sector to pilot ideas which can benefit members of the public. The inter-agency effort also underscores the importance of reviewing rules nimbly with a whole-of-government (WOG) perspective and adopting a risk-calibrated approach by balancing business needs with regulatory concerns. The “Food and Groceries on Wheels” initiative was piloted across 19 designated carparks.
Businesses Recognised for New Business Ideas and Contributions to Rules Review
Companies like “Golden Bridge Foods Manufacturing Pte Ltd” and “Soilbuild Construction Group Ltd” were recognised for providing constructive feedback and suggestions that allowed regulatory agencies like the Singapore Food Agency (SFA), Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), and Energy Market Authority (EMA), to review and make changes to their rules and processes for a more pro-enterprise outcome. In particular, the company “Golden Bridge Foods Manufacturing” provided detailed feedback to SFA on key regulatory concerns related to food export permits. This allowed SFA to streamline its regulatory processes and work with overseas counterparts to reduce compliance burden by exploring common regulatory standards and strengthening the effectiveness of pre-export tests. The measures have led to significant time and cost savings, and illustrate how constructive and clear feedback from the industry can complement government regulatory reviews for industry-wide benefits.
Mr Ong Bee Chip, Managing Director of Golden Bridge Foods Manufacturing, said that “Golden Bridge is honoured that our suggestion was accepted and recognised by the PEP. We are happy to know that SFA takes a pro-business and pro-active stance on export regulatory matters. Golden Bridge will continue to share constructive views and work actively with Singapore government agencies to contribute to the pro-enterprise landscape.”
Enhancing Partnerships and Empowering Businesses Through Stronger Industry-Public Sector Partnerships
Awards were also given out to several TACs to recognise their efforts of working together with the PEP and government agencies to create a more pro-enterprise regulatory environment. TACs play an important role in the enterprise ecosystem, and can contribute as multipliers by helping its members understand and comply with requirements; working with the government on industry-wide issues and co-creating solutions; and raising awareness to these solutions and regulatory initiatives.
Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCCI), one of the TACs that received the “Pro-Enterprise Partner Award”, has been partnering the PEP to engage its various industry members over a series of regulatory dialogues to allow the government to better understand business needs and explore possible solutions together. Mr Roland Ng, President of SCCCI, encouraged the engagement effort and said – “We are honored to be presented with the PEP award as it shows our close partnership with MTI to help our Chamber members to continuously enhance Singapore’s pro-enterprise environment. With the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, it is critical that government rules and regulations adapt and adjust to meet business needs with a “whole-of-government” approach.”
The event also saw the launch of a “Friends of PEP” network, that aims to create a community of pro-enterprise advocates and practitioners, mainly comprising PEP alumni members, TAC partners and both private and public sector individuals. The network will complement the PEP and strengthen the industry-public sector partnership by taking part in some of the PEP’s regulatory review initiatives, where network members can contribute their expertise and suggestions to improve the regulatory environment. “Friends of PEP” members Mr Allan Lim, Mr Seah Liang Chiang, and Mr Nicholas Malcomson were among the guests present at the event to witness the launch of the “Friends of PEP” network.
Mr Lim Ming Yan, Chairman of SBF, said, “SBF would like to congratulate the Pro- Enterprise Panel on its excellent work over the last 20 years in increasing the ease of doing business in Singapore. We call on businesses to collaborate with the Government to co-create a conducive environment to support and spur business growth. This collaboration is particularly critical as the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly reshaped the business landscape. Businesses should maximise this opportunity to transform and proactively provide constructive feedback to the Government, to improve rules and licensing frameworks, speed up processes and facilitate transformation of business ideas.”
Annex A: 2020 PEP-SBF Awards Winners
Annex B: Quotes from “Friends of PEP” Members and Profiles of Private
Sector Panel Discussion Speakers