On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. Since then, it has ripped through the global economy, affecting lives, jobs, and societies, exposing weaknesses of global supply chains, and crippling the aviation and hotel industries. The causes of the pandemic-induced shock-lockdowns, border closures, the collapse of trade, travel bans, and financial market volatility-were common across countries and regions, while the projected recovery will be marked by the divergent circumstances of each country and the idiosyncrasies of its policy response. Success in the post-pandemic era will reflect a constellation of policies and capacities peculiar to each country, including national vaccination rates, integration into major economic blocks, the ability to provide fiscal and monetary stimulus, and the restoration of solvency in the private sector.
With uncertainty about when the COVID-19 crisis will come to an end, coping with hurtling changes has been the only constant. Although IMF has projected that the 2021 global growth will be at 5.5 percent, however, the recovery paths will be different across countries as well as sectors. As Singapore seeks to reopen its economy and borders after transitioning to a Covid-19 endemic state, the government will prepare its population to deal with Covid-19 as part of their daily lives and people will be able to work, travel and shop without quarantines and lockdowns, as they outlined plans for Singapore to transition to a new normal. With these plans in mind to resume economic activity, how should the badly affected industries restructure and recalibrate to seize opportunities and navigate around new challenges brought about by the new normal?
This dialogue webinar hopes to bring together policymakers and business leaders to discuss and deliberate how governments, businesses, and society should work together to restructure the manufacturing sector and Singapore's economy to pave the way for recovery.
DISCUSSION ON MANUFACTURING AND WORKFORCE
Mr Patrick Tay
Member of Singapore Parliament and Assistant Secretary-General, NTUC
Mr Douglas Foo
President, Singapore Manufacturing Federation; Vice-President, Singapore National Employers' Federation; Vice-Chairman, Singapore Business Federation