Singapore sets e-commerce target for growth

Singapore has set a three-year target to grow the share of e-commerce from the current 3 per cent to 10 per cent of total receipts.

This would match where China was three years ago, according to Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Sim Ann.

She told Parliament that benchmarked against the 2014 figures of the UK (13 per cent) and the US (6.5 per cent), Singapore’s target was not unrealistic.

One in four online retail transactions in Singapore were with foreign businesses, she said.

Total e-commerce with locally issued credit and debit cards was valued at S$24.7 billion (US$17.8 billion) over the past three years, with foreign entities accounting for $6.4 billion worth of these transactions, said Sim in response to an MP query.

“While e-commerce presents competition to our retailers, it also gives them the opportunity to expand their reach to the region and beyond,” she said.

The retail industry transformation map outlined last year by the government envisioned a “vibrant” retail industry spanning physical stores, online retailing and mobile channels, as well as local brand owners with global presence.

Sim said government initiatives were helping retailers build digital capabilities and access e-commerce…

Enterprise agency Spring Singapore and the Info-Communications Media Development Authority (IMDA) have teamed up to pre-qualify e-commerce packaged solutions that can be readily adopted by small and medium enterprises.

Spring is also partnering companies such as Google to help SMEs strengthen their digital marketing, while other private firms like DBS, Mediacorp and SingTel have given support by setting up an e-marketplace and training opportunities.

Trade agency International Enterprise Singapore helps companies leverage e-commerce to unlock growth opportunities in overseas markets.

At the same time, said Sim, trade associations and chambers of commerce were reaching out to SMEs to encourage them to adopt e-commerce.

Being launched this year is Spring’s initiatives with SkillsFuture Singapore to help the retail industry workforce adapt and upskill to keep up with developments in e-commerce and digital marketing.

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