Page 51 - ASPRI2223 eDirectory
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  Specifically, ASPRI drew on the funds to:
• Help members secure more sustainable long-term contracts by identifying new outsourcing opportunities from major plant owners and help connect the parties
• Internationalise through organising trade
missions to Japan in 2007 and the Middle
East in 2009; and
• Develop training courses for various levels
above the craftsmen level in line with the Process Workforce Skills Qualification.
In announcing the award at ASPRI’s 10th anniversary dinner on 21 April 2006 attended by 300 guests, Mr Chan Soo Sen, then Minister for State for Education & Trade and Industry, said, “I think our companies need to aim higher and shoot further. Firstly, our companies have to aim higher by upgrading their capabilities so that they can handle larger and more complex projects. Examples of important capabilities include areas such as project management, design engineering, machinery upgrading, and maintenance management.
“Secondly, our companies must be prepared to shoot further, and go where their clients are expanding. Because when their
clients prosper, so do our companies. The challenge for our companies is to serve their clients so well that they would want to invite our companies to venture anywhere in the world with them.”
But securing it was a long-drawn process because of a mismatched between what ASPRI proposed and what the agencies were willing to support. As the programme was relatively new, SPRING had to determine “what was qualifying, what was not, what they could support, what they could not support. Then there were things that we wanted to do, but they didn’t want to support, the things they wanted to do but we didn’t quite want to do. We were having quite a bit of struggle”, said Mr Quek.
ASPRI made the application soon after the LEAD programme was announced in May 2005. “We were one of the pioneers, so the demands were very stringent. We went through 17 drafts!” he remarked.
The timing for the grant was opportune. The LEAD award came just as ASPRI was wrapping up Process LIUP after 10 years. “The achievements and the confidence gained put
ASPRI in good stead to move on to the next lap to help members to further expand their capabilities and level up to a higher playing field,” noted Mr Goh.
The PCM sector was riding high as Singapore’s chemical industry was in the midst of its biggest expansion with the launch of two major projects. ExxonMobil Asia Pacific had embarked on the construction of a world-scale steam-cracking complex adjacent to its Singapore refinery. Along with the new ethylene cracker, the parallel train would include new world-scale polyethylene, polypropylene and speciality elastomer plants, an aromatics extraction unit, and oxoalcohol expansion. Shell Eastern Petroleum also decided to proceed with the construction of a new world-scale ethylene cracker on Pulau Bukom. The integrated refinery and petrochemicals project included modifications and additions to the Bukom refinery and a new mono-ethylene glycol plant.
When fully operational, these investments would help to double Singapore’s existing naphtha cracking capacity and provide a boost to the country’s petrochemical output.
Also under construction on Jurong Island were Ciba Specialty Chemicals, RohMax Oil Additives, Lube International, Sumitomo Chemical and Huntsman.
The biomedical sector was in its second wave of new investment and expansion. Among them were GSK’s S$300-million plant to produce bulk bacteria paediatric vaccines against infectious disease, its largest in Asia; Lonza and Bio*One Capital’s S$350-million mammalian cell culture facility to manufacture commercial biopharmaceuticals under a new joint venture, Lonza Biologics Tuas; and Novartis’ Pharma’s S$310-million plant to produce bulk active ingredients for the company.

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