Developing and Implementing the Sea Transport Industry Transformation Map

The Industry Transformation Programme was first launched at Budget 2016 to develop roadmaps for 23 industries to address issues within each sector, and deepen partnerships between the Government, companies, trade associations and chambers, and the Labour Movement. This was against a backdrop of rising challenges such as increasing competition, disruption from technological advancements as well as domestic resource constraints such as land and manpower. Each Industry Transformation Map (ITM) lays out the blueprint and key strategies needed to drive the industry forward.

Developed by MPA in partnership with the industry, unions and other government agencies, the Sea Transport ITM builds on MPA’s strategic long-term plans to develop Singapore’s next generation port and strengthen our international maritime centre (IMC).

The key strategies of the Sea Transport ITM are: 

  1. Build up connectivity with other complementary clusters; strengthen linkages between the sea transport sector and other adjacent sectors, such as commodity trading. 
  2. Driving Growth through Productivity Enhancements and Innovation – Invest in new port capabilities that will capitalise on emerging technologies arising from Industry 4.0; put in place an enabling environment and infrastructure for innovation; leverage digital solutions to enhance operational efficiencies and provide greater value to its customer. 
  3. Developing a Future-Ready Maritime Workforce – Develop new programmes to equip the maritime workforce with relevant future skills; support maritime companies’ efforts to upskill their employees in specialised technical areas, as well as soft skills such as communication and leadership.

Four Pillars of the Sea Transport ITM

Specific initiatives have been laid out under the Sea Transport ITM to catalyse innovation, drive productivity improvements, as well as enhance maritime jobs and skills. Support is also available for maritime companies to build their capabilities and networks, and internationalise their operations.


Interested maritime companies may wish to contact

Pillars of the Sea Transport Industry Transformation Map


Build a Vibrant Innovation Ecosystem to Drive Competitiveness & New Growth Areas Innovation is key to industry transformation as we develop future capabilities and solutions built on emerging technologies. To drive the next phase of growth, MPA has mapped out various initiatives. The MPA Living Lab was established to create an enabling environment for innovation and the Maritime Transformation Programme serves to deepen maritime R&D capabilities. Maritime technology enterprises and start-ups could receive support from the industry-wide acceleration programme – Port Innovation Ecosystem Reimagined @ BLOCK71 – to develop innovative solutions. Three Maritime Centres of Excellence (CoE) have also been set up within local Institutes of Higher Learning to support the Sea Transport ITM’s innovation thrust. These seek to deepen R&D Capabilities in three strategic areas: (a) Next Generation Ports; (b) Maritime Energy and Sustainable Development; and (c) Maritime Safety


Building a Highly Automated and Digital Maritime Environment To ensure that Singapore stays ahead of the competition and continues to provide greater value to customers, MPA has in place initiatives to support maritime companies to improve productivity by enhancing business processes and workflow, or by developing and adopting technology solutions. Maritime companies seeking to elevate their productivity by way of enhancing business processes and workflow; or by developing and adopting technology solutions can tap on the Maritime Cluster Fund – Productivity grant. There is also the Industry Digital Plan (IDP) to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in their adoption of digital technology to boost growth and productivity. The IDPs are part of Info-communications Media Development Authority's (IMDA) SMEs Go Digital Programme, which seeks to make the process of going digital simple for SMEs

Jobs and Skills

Develop a Future-Ready Maritime Workforce MPA works closely with Government agencies, the industry and unions to develop a future-ready maritime workforce as we move towards a more automated and digital future. The Skills Framework for Sea Transport provides useful information on the career pathways, skills and competencies for the sector, as well as the relevant training programmes. Interested individuals and maritime companies can tap on grants under the Maritime Cluster Fund – Manpower, to reskill and gear up for smoother workforce transition. Through the Maritime Singapore Connect (MSC) Office, MPA also aims to connect students and jobseekers to maritime opportunities, and provide Singaporeans with easy access to maritime careers, education and training opportunities.


Support Maritime Companies to Grow into Global Champions MPA works closely with other Government agencies, such as Enterprise Singapore (ESG), to provide the necessary support to maritime companies to groom them into global champions. The challenges encountered by maritime companies when expanding their footprint overseas may include access to reliable business partners, access to funds to support expansion and difficulties in acquiring relevant expertise and talent.