In the pipeline: 2,100 PMET jobs in electronics

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New road map aims to help firms take advantage of emerging opportunities

A new road map for electronics manufacturing aims to create $22.2 billion in value-add and 2,100 jobs for professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs) by 2020.

The Industry Transformation Map - unveiled yesterday by Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry) S. Iswaran - includes plans to help electronics manufacturers diversify into new growth opportunities, transform existing factories and deepen workers' skills.

This comes amid a global push towards advanced manufacturing - also known as Industry 4.0 - with manufacturers ramping up investments in automation and new technologies to build "smart factories", where man and machine work together seamlessly.

Mr Iswaran launched the new road map at the official opening of JTC nanoSpace@Tampines. The industrial facility within Tampines Wafer Fab Park is purpose-built to meet the operational requirements of niche semiconductor manufacturers.

The electronics industry has been, and will still be, a key sector of growth for Singapore's economy, said Mr Iswaran.

Electronics manufacturing accounted for 4.4 per cent of the economy last year, with $90 billion in output and employment of about 70,000.

Creating 2,100 new PMET jobs in electronics is "no mean feat", especially as the sector's existing base of workers is already relatively large, Mr Iswaran noted.

The road map aims to help firms in the sector take advantage of emerging opportunities in segments such as autonomous vehicles and artificial intelligence.

While Singapore looks to continue attracting investments in high value-add activities, existing electronics manufacturers will also need to transform.

"We aim to upgrade all of our manufacturing plants in Singapore to be best-in-class compared to their global operations," Mr Iswaran said.