y heartiest congratulations to ASPRI in celebrating its 25th anniversary! ASPRI has been an important partner in ensuring the continued success and safety of both the Process Construction and Maintenance (PCM) sector as well as the Energy & Chemicals (E&C) industry. ASPRI played a pivotal role in driving the industry’s growth and development over the years, working with many partners across PCM companies, plant owners, government agencies and other trade associations.
In 2022, the world turned the corner in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and moved towards endemicity, ASPRI’s support helped us to navigate and overcome the challenges we faced. For example, when border restrictions limited the inflow of foreign workers, ASPRI worked with partners to develop and pilot an industry-led end-to-end process to facilitate the entry of Construction, Process and Marine (CMP) migrant workers in a safe and secure manner. In addition, during the later stages of the pandemic when there was a COVID19 resurgence, ASPRI shared contacts to acquire ART Kits cheaper in bulk for companies who were short of ART Kits to continue regular testing. On an ongoing basis, ASPRI worked closely with EDB’s Central COVID-19 Operations Division (CCO) to engage PCM companies by providing feedback and sharing updates on the latest effective Safe Management Measures (SMM) changes. ASPRI’s close collaboration with PCM companies eased manpower challenges, enabled business continuity and helped to ensure a COVID-19 Safe workforce.
The COVID-19 pandemic also reminded us of the need for the sector to accelerate productivity improvements and reduce reliance on low-skilled foreign labour. The Ministry of Manpower has announced foreign worker policy changes which will take effect from Jan 1, 2024, to give companies time to prepare. I am heartened that ASPRI has been working closely with PCM companies to upskill workers, improve processes, and encourage mechanisation and digitalisation. The PCM Management Committee (PCMMC) has also developed tools such as the Productivity Certification Framework (PCF), Activity Analysis (AA) and Best Productivity Practices Implementation Index (BPPII), and ASPRI members have taken advantage of these initiatives. Aligned with the objectives of PCMMC, ASPRI has also worked with IMDA to launch the Process Construction and Maintenance Industry Digital Plan. The adoption and implementation of all these initiatives, and the continued training and upgrading of workers will be essential to help the PCM companies and plant owners to prepare for the upcoming changes. I hope that ASPRI will continue to play a leadership role in leading the industry along this transformation journey, working closely with plant owners.
To conclude, as we celebrate ASPRI’s 25th anniversary of being an important enabler for the PCM and E&C industries in Singapore, let us also look forward to many more years of strong collaboration and partnership!
Vice President, Singapore Economic Development Board