SINGAPORE, Oct. 22 -- The Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry issued the following news release:
Singapore and China reaffirmed bilateral economic ties through the Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP) by strengthening cooperation in the areas of modern services, technology commercialisation and Smart City solutions. Two Letters of Intent (LOI) and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) were signed today at the 15th SIP Joint Steering Council (JSC) meeting co-chaired by Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for National Security and Minister for Home Affairs Teo Chee Hean and Vice Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China (PRC) Zhang Gaoli.
Under the LOIs, SIP will serve as a pilot site for cooperation between China and Singapore in modern services and will also be further developed into a centre for science, technology and innovation. The MOU aims to promote joint projects between Singapore and Chinese companies in innovative Smart City solutions, such as Intelligent Transport Systems, in SIP.
The LOI on modern services, signed between Singapore Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Lee Yi Shyan and the PRC Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Chao, seeks to promote bilateral trade in services, support new areas of financial cooperation and facilitate Singapore companies' interests in SIP's services sector. Examples are professional services, environment, info-comm technology and human resource development.
The LOI on the commercialisation of technologies was signed between Singapore Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Lee Yi Shyan and the PRC Vice-Minister of Science and Technology Cao Jianlin. This LOI supports the development of Singapore science and technology entities in SIP. It facilitates the commercialisation of technologies by allowing Singapore entities to tap into demand from the Chinese market in areas like bio-technology, nano-technology and next generation info-comm technology.
These new initiatives will open up more business opportunities for Singapore and Chinese companies, especially in the services sector. China is a key services export destination for Singapore. As Singapore's 5th largest services export destination in 2011, China accounted for 5% of Singapore's total services export.
SIP is an ideal site to pilot bilateral cooperation in the services sector. It has undergone impressive economic development since its establishment and has consistently posted healthy economic results. Last year, its GDP and fiscal revenue grew by 10.7 per cent and 12.6 per cent to reach RMB 173.8 billion and RMB 18.5 billion respectively. SIP's services industry also continues to grow, with its contribution to the GDP increasing 2 per cent to reach 37.7 per cent in 2012.
The 15th SIP JSC also highlighted SIP's continued relevance to China's socio-economic reforms. In addition, Singapore reaffirmed its commitment to share its experiences to meet SIP's evolving developmental goals including its focus on human resource development. Over the past 19 years, Singapore has trained more than 2,700 Chinese officials under the software transfer programmes in broad areas such as finance and professional services, information communications and public administration. Singapore and Chinese officials continue to develop warm relations and learn from one another.