The productivity of local small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will be benchmarked against their regional peers in an effort to make them more productive and identify areas in which they need help.
Conducted by the Asian Competitiveness Institute (ACI), in collaboration with SPRING Singapore and the European Central Bank, the benchmarking will “help policymakers better understand how to encourage firms to be more efficient.”
In a speech this week, Second Minister for Trade and Industry, S Iswaran, said competitiveness is vital to the success of Singapore’s economy, and its ability to create employment and raise wages.
“An example is the SME productivity benchmarking exercise that ACI is working on,” he said. “Benchmarking Singapore SMEs to regional SMEs will help to shed light on the areas that need further attention, and enable policymakers to formulate better policies and more targeted programmes.”
He added that companies cannot rely just on low costs for sustainable and competitive business, but also must focus on skills development and market scale through economic activity.
This can be done through training and education as well as encouraging innovation among local companies, he added.
“To this end, I believe that the ACI can play an important role in helping Asian countries better understand the factors driving competitiveness, and what they can do to raise competitiveness.”