In the framework of the EU Industry Days and EU Industry Week 2021, Singapore’s European Chamber of Commerce (EuroCham) and the EU Delegation to Singapore will organise a webinar, titled Are we ready for the future? Shaping flexible and innovative skills policy worldwide’.

This event will take place on 22 February (9:00 CET), and will contribute to ongoing considerations for a new European Industrial Strategy, which was announced for 2021 by the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, in her State of the Union speech.


The COVID-19 pandemic has brought digital transformation to the forefront for governments and businesses in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) by bridging processes, systems, and data to thrive in the new normal.

The past few months have seen a spike in interest in the green revolution, which has been a long time in the making. This rapid shift towards climate neutrality alongside digital transformation is changing the way we work, learn, take part in society and lead our everyday lives.

Additionally, the economic downturn is accelerating job displacement, and the jobs that have disappeared as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic may not be the same as those that emerge as the economy recovers. With job displacement may come opportunity.

Singapore has always been at the forefront of the development of innovative and flexible skills policies and initiatives (e.g. SGUnited, SkillsFuture, Singapore Cyber Talent Initiative etc.). It is home to over 10,000 EU companies and is the EU’s largest trading partner in the Southeast Asian region. Furthermore, the EU and Singapore share a similar outlook on open markets and the importance of rules-based multilateral order. The webinar has the potential to spur dialogue on skills policies in Singapore and the EU.

The EU and Singapore can only grasp these opportunities if they sufficiently support and facilitate reskilling and redeployment solutions. Both are adopting new initiatives and providing funding to support training and redeployment programmes in order to secure their workforce.

These programmes are most effectively undertaken in partnerships that involve public and private sectors, academia and civil society. In a recent survey published by EuroCham, companies have flagged the importance of addressing the growing digital skill gap.

The webinar will offer the opportunity for EU and Singapore policymakers and industry representatives to exchange the latest policies and actions undertaken to:

  1. address talent and skills gaps – with a focus on digital skills – in important industry ecosystems (aeronautics; cybersecurity; green/climate innovation);
  2. reinforce exchange among public, private and academic actors. The webinar will help to establish a more structured dialogue between the EU and Singapore in this area, benefiting ongoing initiatives on both sides.

The agenda for the event is as follows:

Opening remarks:

  • H.E. Barbara Plinkert, EU Ambassador to Singapore
  • Mr Federico Donato, President of EuroCham Singapore

Setting the scene: Views from EU and Singapore

Video Message from EU Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights, Nicolas Schmit

Panel discussion

Moderator: Simonetta Cook, Member of the Cabinet of the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, President of the European Council


  • Slawomir Tokarski, Director of Industrial Policy and Skills, European Commission (DG GROW)
  • Dr Gog Soon Joo, Chief Skills Officer, SkillsFuture Singapore
  • Tiffany Rose, Vice President, Legal Counsel for HERE Technologies
  • Mervin Toh, Founder, OPSolutions

Find the full agenda and register here.

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