Budget 2021: Where Singapore’s government plans to boost digital transformation

Providing a CTO-as-a-service programme is one of several planned initiatives meant to help Singaporean businesses and public agencies structurally adapt to a digital world.

Singapore skyline, central business district
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The Singapore government has charted out tech directions for businesses and industries in its fiscal 2021 budget even as the country is in the midst of fighting its way out of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Overall, the government has allocated S$24 billion to enable Singapore’s firms and workers to emerge stronger through the next phase of transformation over the next three years.

The key highlights of the budget include a S$1 billion fund for schemes and support programmes “to cofund mature enterprises’ adoption of digital solutions and new technologies”, invest in three key platforms, enhance the Productivity Solutions Grant – Job Redesign, support green tech under the Singapore Green Plan 2030, and set up a CTO-as-a-service initiative.

Accelerating structural adaptation is key for Singaporean government and business

In his budget speech in parliament, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat noted that while last year’s series of budgets focused on providing “emergency support” as the pandemic kicked in and the country faced its worst recession since independence, the emphasis in this year’s budget is on accelerating “structural adaptation” as Singapore’s gross domestic product contracted by 5.4% in 2020.

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