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US Companies Can Grow Their Business in Southeast Asia Thanks to New Agreements with Singapore

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

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The Commercial Service team in Singapore has developed several new agreements with Singapore leaders that will help U.S. companies grow their business in the Indo-Pacific, particularly in the region known as ASEAN—the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. With a combined population of 647 million people, a burgeoning middle class, and a young and growing population, the ASEAN region presents tremendous commercial opportunities for U.S. companies.

On Sept. 13, Under Secretary for International Trade Gil Kaplan signed Statements of Intent on behalf of the International Trade Administration (ITA) with the Singapore Business Federation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the Singapore Manufacturing Federation to forge closer ties between U.S. and Singaporean companies and to facilitate ASEAN regional outreach in key areas such as energy, smart cities, aerospace, fintech, and standards.

On Nov.16, Vice President Pence and Singapore Prime Minister Lee met in Singapore and announced a two-year government-to-government (G2G) commercial collaboration framework led by the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry. The G2G framework reinforces commitments made in September by U.S. and Singaporean industry leaders and encourages U.S. and Singaporean companies to explore cooperative opportunities in Southeast Asia and other relevant third-country markets. The framework prioritizes collaboration on infrastructure, energy, standards, smart cities, fintech, e-commerce, and deep technology.

A major goal of the framework is to foster links between U.S. and Singaporean companies, including in rapidly developing fields such as additive manufacturing (also known as 3D printing), blockchain, and driverless cars. The benefits of the framework are expected to extend beyond Singapore to include U.S. business partners and consumers in the broader ASEAN and Indo-Pacific regions, including through U.S. support for the newly established ASEAN Smart Cities Network.

The Commercial Service team is busy implementing the new agreements with Singapore, including through support for these recent and upcoming activities:

  • A September 2018 best practices business roundtable on medical technology standards and certification processes led by the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) and the Singapore Manufacturing Federation
  • ASTM International’s October 2018 announcement that Singapore’s National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC) will join ASTM’s Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence as a strategic partner
  • An October 2018 memorandum of understanding on additive manufacturing standards between NAMIC and the Ivaldi Group (San Leandro, California), building on previous Access Asia outreach in California
  • A strategic partnership launched in October 2018 between ITA and the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO), a global codes, standards, and conformity assessment organization, which will support the development of smart city-related standards throughout Southeast Asia
  • Participation by ITA Deputy Assistant Secretary for Services James Sullivan in the Nov. 12-16 Singapore FinTech Festival, where he met with U.S. companies displaying their products and services at ITA’s U.S. Pavilion and spoke on a panel on Blockchain Opportunities and Threats
  • A U.S. Country Showcase in Singapore featured Nov. 12-15 at the ASEAN and East Asia Summit Meetings, highlighting innovative technology, service, and standards solutions from U.S. firms
  • Plans to support 45 U.S. companies participating in the Nov. 27-29 OSEA Show in Singapore, which is the largest and most significant buying event in Asia for the oil and gas sectors
  • Plans to develop a U.S.-ASEAN Smart Cities Network Partnership event in 2019 in close coordination with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the U.S. Department of State, and other interagency partners.

Source: International Trade Administration

Category: International Trade, Economic Development