SUNRISE programme to enhance business collaboration between Singapore and Andhra Pradesh
- SBF will take the lead in the SUNRISE programme, which sets in motion bilateral trade activities and establish institutions of commerce between Singapore and the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.
- The programme aims to encourage more Singapore companies to explore business opportunities in Andhra Pradesh through capacity and knowledge building, business facilitation and exploring new themes for collaboration.
10 January 2019 [Singapore] - Minister for Communications and Information and Minister-in-charge of Trade Relations Mr S. Iswaran today announced the launch of the SUNRISE programme at the 4th Joint Implementation Steering Committee (JISC)1 in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh. The programme sets in motion bilateral trade activities and establishes institutions of commerce between Singapore and the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.
The Singapore Business Federation (SBF) is taking the lead in this multi-agency, government-to-government initiative, which has already seen the formation of the Andhra Pradesh – Singapore Business Council (APSBC) in February last year. The launch of the SUNRISE programme coincides with the SBF-led business mission to the southern Indian state from 8 -11 January and the first Joint Meeting of the APSBC.
Supported by Enterprise Singapore under the Local Enterprise and Association Development (LEAD) programme, the SUNRISE programme is part of a broader partnership between the Singapore government and the state government of Andhra Pradesh to build the new capital city of Amaravati by 2024 with a goal to encourage more Singapore companies to explore business opportunities in Andhra Pradesh.
In its role as Singapore Secretariat for the APSBC, SBF will facilitate progress through the strategic thrusts of capacity and knowledge building, business facilitation and exploring new themes for collaboration.
Capacity and knowledge building
To raise awareness of the Amaravati project and the opportunities it brings among the Singapore business community, SBF aims to organise both outbound and inbound missions, so companies from both sides can get valuable first-hand insights of their respective destination markets.
Business missions will include dialogue platforms and forums, site visits and networking with local businesses, government agencies, and associations and chambers – which will eventually translate into in-depth knowledge of Amaravati and the larger state of Andhra Pradesh.
SBF will also facilitate high-level engagements, which will provide Singapore companies with access to government decision makers, and also the opportunity to offer feedback on on-going projects and challenges faced.
SBF’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr Ho Meng Kit said, “These engagements can be organised as a component of a business mission or in conjunction with visits by high-level government officials. They are an unmistakable demonstration of the political will behind the Amaravati project, and will greatly instil confidence in companies contemplating expansion into Andhra Pradesh.”
With support from its network of trade associations and chambers, combined with a membership base of some 26,000 companies – which includes local SMEs, foreign companies and multinationals with operations in Singapore – SBF is uniquely positioned to maximise its reach locally, and also encourage third-country partnerships.
For long-term sustainability, Singapore companies will have to be supported by on-ground partners in Andhra Pradesh who can, among other things, conduct due diligence, recruit human capital, secure real estate and seek out business and investment opportunities.
SBF will source and audit service providers like legal and tax firms, real estate and recruitment agencies, so as to ensure a minimal standard of service quality for Singapore companies making a foray into the new market.
In addition to facilitating infrastructural and organisational support, SBF will also actively catalyse business opportunities through one-on-one business matching and the formation of Singapore consortiums.
While one-on-one business matching pairs up companies with complementary services or products, consortium formation allows Singapore companies to collectively provide comprehensive, end-to-end solutions to take on mega-projects otherwise impossible for a single company.
Exploring new themes for collaboration
In addition to the sectors already identified for collaboration – such as food and agribusiness, construction and infrastructure – SBF will focus on two cross-sector themes of innovation and succession pipeline.
In the context of the wider Singapore-India Innovation Hub platform, SBF intends to tap on and enhance Singapore’s innovation ecosystem by onboarding Andhra Pradesh and Singapore firms to create an Andhra Pradesh-Singapore Innovation Corridor eco-system.
Through this, Singapore will be able to further enhance its knowledge economy, and build itself up as a fundraising, commercialisation and intellectual property hub for Andhra Pradesh and Indian companies. Vice versa, Andhra Pradesh will also be able to build up its own innovation ecosystem.
Given that many businesses and organisations are in the process of cultivating new management for eventual handover, SBF will also actively engage the next generation of leaders. A network of young Singapore and Indian professionals with strong affinity towards one another’s respective countries will ensure continued engagements and business partnerships built upon trust and friendship as they move into leadership positions within their organisations.
Mr Ho Meng Kit said, “The SUNRISE programme represents a vast reservoir of untapped potential and offers myriad opportunities for Singapore firms to secure new supply chains, markets and trading partners. Amid the current global uncertainties and trade tensions, collaboration with Andhra Pradesh is a good way for businesses to diversify and expand overseas.
“Andhra Pradesh is also a good platform for businesses to establish a foothold and extend their operations to other regions in India,” he added.
1. The JISC was formed to implement the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), signed by Mr S. Iswaran and Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh Mr N. Chandrababu Naidu in May 2017, to bring about greater collaboration between Singapore and Andhra Pradesh.