Ladies and Gentlemen.
1. A very good morning. It gives me great pleasure to join all of
you here at the Land Transport Engineering Conference. It
is heartening to see industry partners from the land transport
sector coming together to discuss the future of land
LTMP 2040: Building a vibrant Land Transport industry
2. Every day, our land transport system connects millions of
Singaporeans to home, jobs and schools. It is an important
economic enabler and social leveller. An efficient and reliable
land transport network is therefore central for our economy.
Earlier this year, the Land Transport Authority had
announced the Land Transport Masterplan (LTMP) 2040,
which articulates a vision of a more convenient, wellconnected, inclusive and faster land transport system.
3. Singapore will be a “45-Minute City with 20-Minute Towns” in
2040. All journeys to the nearest neighbourhood centre on
public, active and shared modes of transport will take less
than 20 minutes. 9 in 10 peak-period journeys using public,
active and shared transport modes will be completed in less
than 45 minutes.
4. The rail network will be expanded to enhance the public
transport infrastructure and to give commuters better
connectivity. Eight in 10 households will have a train station
within a 10-minute walk from their house by 2030.
5. The Government is committed to reducing the carbon
footprint of our land transport system. We aim to have a
100% cleaner energy public bus fleet by 2040, like electric or
hybrid vehicles. Running trials for cleaner energy buses are
already ongoing, and cleaner energy buses will gradually
replace our fleet if the trials are successful and cost-effective.
Cultivating Innovation and Technology as an Enabler
6. These are just some of the key plans set out in the LTMP
2040. The evolution of digital technologies such as 5G,
Artificial Intelligence, robotics & automation, the Internet of
Things (IoT) and the emergence of new forms of energy
have thrown up a range of new mobility options and
opportunities for the industry. Many of the masterplan
strategies will rely on emerging technology to deliver
transport services in new ways.
7. Autonomous Vehicles or AVs, for example, is an area that
will potentially reinvent land transport provision, such as
dynamically routed services. We are happy to see quite a
few organisations developing their AV systems in Singapore.
ST Engineering Land Systems is conducting public trial of
autonomous shuttle and partnering with SBS Transit to
deploy a few of its best bus captains as safety operators.
NTU is also working on a separate 12m autonomous bus trial
with Volvo. The bus, which can fit 80 people, has gone
through multiple tests at the Centre of Excellence for Testing
and Research of Autonomous Vehicles – NTU (Cetran), and
is now being tested in actual traffic conditions. While the
widespread deployment of AVs is still sometime away, such
trials give us an early sense of the operations and
requirements for the new jobs that will be created.
8. On the rail front, the industry will adopt widening digitalisation
of processes behind many of the key rail operations systems
to enhance rail reliability. Amongst many areas is the Internet
of Things (IoT) enabling on-board sensors, such as
automated vehicle and track inspection (AVI and ATI)
systems, which help deliver real time analysis and
monitoring, identifying problems before they cause delays,
and facilitate automated and preventive maintenance. LTA,
SBS Transit and SMRT are also working with Singapore
Institute of Technology (SIT) to develop a simulation model
for the train operations of Downtown Line (DTL). The
ultimate aim is to evaluate the impact in a software model
before deploying new operational plans in response to
changes in demand.
Raise workforce capabilities
9. The benefits of identifying, trialling and adopting innovative
emerging technologies can be tremendous. While doing so,
many of these emerging trends and game-changing
technologies will also require the land transport workforce to
develop new skills, in areas such as data analytics,
digitalisation, predictive maintenance, cyber security,
automation, etc. After all, transformation is not just about
technology and processes. It is also very much about people.
10. Disruptive technologies are real challenges that the
workforce face, and are trying to understand, and tackle day
to day. We should help them prepare for the inevitable
transformation so they have the new skills and knowledge to
adapt to these changes effectively and take on evolving job
roles. At the same time, we should continue investing
heavily in capability development and build a talent pipeline
with the right future skills to join the land transport industry.
It is against this backdrop that we launched the Land
Transport Industry Transformation Map (ITM) in February
2018, with a vision for an innovative land transport industry
enabled by technology and a highly competent workforce.
This was followed by the launch of the Skills Framework for
Public Transport in May 2018 to build a more future-proof
workforce through jobs redesign and skills development.
Skills Framework for Public Transport
11. The Skills Framework for Public Transport was the fruit of
almost two years of development efforts between tripartite
partners – the industry, unions and government, to ensure
that the land transport sector is ready to meet the challenges
of tomorrow head-on.
12. It has helped to give the workforce, and potential entrants a
clearer sense of job roles that exist in the sector, the
competencies required as well as programmes available for
upskilling. In addition, it addresses emerging skills required
as the sector evolves. The Institutes of Higher Learning
(IHLs) can rely on the Framework to enhance the
responsiveness and quality of their training programmes,
ensure curriculum is aligned to industry’s needs, and advise
students on potential public transport careers. The
Framework also serves as a guidance for training providers
to better align the scope of training to job demands and
develop courses that equip the transport workforce with the
necessary skills and knowledge to enhance capability
13. We will continue to update the Skills Framework, so that it
remains relevant. We intend to refresh it every two to three
years, and we would also need new programmes to support
the updated skills framework.
Nurturing skilled workers to support land transport industry
14. Today, our rail and bus sectors employ more than 22,000
people to support the 6 million journeys made on public
transport each day. With the emergence of new forms of
mobility and expansion of the public bus and rail network, we
expect to create up to 10,000 new jobs for Singaporeans
from now to 2040. It is thus critical that the industry
continuously invest in capability development to build the
15. I am heartened that LTA and the Institutes of Higher
Learning are already working together to develop a series of
manpower development initiatives to attract, develop and
retain talent in the industry. LTA offers Public Transport and
Skills Future Study Awards to develop a next generation of
public transport professionals. Subsidy and seed grants are
also offered to support development of industry relevant
programmes and enhancement of specialised training
facilities at the IHLs. To date, LTA and the IHLs have cofunded four teaching labs at the Singapore Institute of
Technology, Republic Polytechnic and Singapore
Polytechnic to provide students with an immersive and
hands-on learning experience that supplements their
16. The IHLs also work closely with LTA and the transport
operators on continual education training to develop the
current workforce. They are part of the Singapore Rail
Academy Technical Committee, which was launched in July
2019. The committee provides advice on the technical
needs and oversees learning programmes required by the
rail sector, in alignment with the Skills Framework for Public
17. On the public bus front, the IHLs sit on the Expert Panel with
Singapore Bus Academy and representatives from public
bus operators, to define industry standards and develop
assessment and preparatory course materials for bus
engineering programmes, for example, the Certification for
Technical Specialist (CTS), to ensure the relevance of
assessment and to prepare candidates for the certification.
The Singapore Bus Academy launched the Certification for
Technical Specialist (CTS) in August 2018 to benchmark the
competencies of our bus professionals.
Working with IHLs to grow talent pipeline
18. The quality of the workforce is important to deliver the LTMP
2040 vision and future mobility needs. In building a talented
pipeline with the right future skills to join the land transport
industry, the IHLs have been developing and delivering many
transport programmes to enlarge the manpower pipeline
supply. The Institute of Technical Education’s Technical
Engineer Diploma (TED) in Automotive Engineering is an
example that serves this objective. We will look towards the
IHLs to curate more industry-relevant competency-based
Pre-employment Training (PET) and Continual Education
and Training (CET) programmes, and build specific
capabilities for the respective land transport sectors.
Forging Close Relationships
19. Technology would open up many new possibilities in moving
people and goods around efficiently. We want to move
decisively in adopting emerging technologies to build a
connected and smart metropolis.
20. To ensure a smooth transition, our local transport ecosystem
must co-create and work together as one cohesive whole.
We must deepen the existing tripartite partnership between
the Government, unions and companies to drive innovation,
raise productivity, and to prepare our workforce in the land
transport sector for the future.
21. Transforming the land transport industry is an important
work. If we set our minds towards embracing innovative
technologies and forging close partnerships to raise
capabilities of our workforce, I am confident that the land
transport system will continue to serve Singaporeans well.
22. In closing, I would like to congratulate the Institute of
Technical Education (ITE) on the success of the Technical
Engineer Diploma (TED) in Automotive Engineering as we
celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the programme.
23. I also thank ITE for putting together this industry event. I look
forward to the exchanges and discussions in today’s
programme. Thank you.