Singapore’s Education Minister Heng Swee Keat has recently revealed the 26-member committee that will spearhead the national conversation on Singapore’s future. Drawn from all walks of life, the panel is comprised of Singaporeans from diverse backgrounds: a taxi driver, a social entrepreneur, a banker, students, educators and government officials.
Each individual brings to the table their own set of issues and concerns. It is this diverse mix of perspectives and life experiences that will add value to the national conversation, aptly named “Our Singapore Conversation” (OSC), which primarily aims to discuss Singapore’s future and its priorities as a nation. Rikvin, a Singapore company formation specialist, fully supports the national conversation, recognizing this as an opportunity to come together as a nation and contribute to Singapore’s continued progress.
Mr. Satish Bakhda, General Manager and Head of Rikvin’s Operations, has expressed full support for the process. “The national conversation gives every Singaporean a voice. This is our chance to come together as a nation and work towards a better, stronger Singapore. After all, true wealth and sustainable economic growth can only be borne in a harmonious and secure society. The last thing we want to be is a cash-rich but socially-poor country,” he said.
FROM ALL WALKS OF LIFE
As a non-partisan process, the committee members do not represent a specific group or advocacy. Chosen for individuality rather than functional representation, the members come from different ages and backgrounds, including the private sector, grassroots, unions, voluntary organizations, athletics, academia, arts and politics. The increasing cost of basic goods and vehicles as well as issues relating to living in Singapore as a youth or senior citizen will be discussed.
OUR SINGAPORE CONVERSATION
Our Singapore Conversation is an opportunity for Singaporeans to come together and discuss the next phase of Singapore’s development. It is hoped that the conversation will forge stronger ties among Singaporeans as the Republic faces new challenges in the future.
Analysis by Rikvin shows that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong first introduced the concept of a national conversation during his National Day Message this year, in which he expounded on the themes of hope, heart, and home. During the speech, PM Lee urged Singaporeans to think seriously about the nation’s future, contribute their ideas and work together to make it happen. He also stressed that Singapore must keep improving in a rapidly changing world on pain of stagnation and retrogress.
As such, the national conversation is intended to be a catalyst for dialogue and give all Singaporeans an opportunity to voice their concerns and aspirations.
When asked what he can contribute to the conversation, Mr. Bakhda said, “As an advocate of economic sustainability, I wish to address the anti-foreigner sentiments of a vocal minority. Through the national conversation, we can discuss how to achieve equilibrium between improving the quality of life of Singaporeans while at the same time understand how we are not closing the door on ourselves when we choose to maintain a strategic open door policy to qualified foreign professionals.”
“I am a firm believer that high-caliber professionals who enter Singapore via the EntrePass or Personalized employment pass, for example, enhance the economic pie for us and we should keep an open mind when founders with innovative products and services choose to start a Singapore company. Singapore has always been a melting pot of cultures and should continue to be,” Mr. Bakhda surmised.