China and India offer “tremendous opportunities” for Singapore as it emerges from the current economic crisis, according to the City-State’s Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam.

Participating in the celebration of the 85th anniversary of the Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SICCI), Mr. Shanmugaratnam said here on Saturday that the emergence from the crisis “is an exciting period.”

Without specifying how far the City-State had actually weathered the crisis, he identified Southeast Asia too as an area of new opportunities. China and India had often figured on Singapore’s economic horizon in the pre-crisis decade as well.

Praising the “stellar track record” of SICCI in “an increasingly complex marketplace,” Mr. Shanmugaratnam emphasised how it “has its work cut out” to help entrepreneurs from the Singapore Indian spectrum capitalise on these new opportunities.

Tracing the steps the chamber had already taken to “come to terms with the severe economic recession,” SICCI Chairman Vijay Iyengar said “youth entrepreneurship” was a major focal point.

In association with the Nanyang Technological University here, SICCI has instituted scholarships under a “global immersion programme” for student-internships in India. Such a future-oriented programme was being launched with the help of another Singapore-Indian association.

The SICCI had, on its own initiative, begun sending Singapore students to India for business-related internships at corporate centres. With the first batch having successfully felt the pulse of the Indian corporate scene, Mr. Iyengar indicated that a larger number of students would go to India under this project. He also outlined the chamber’s interactive programmes for the stabled Singapore-Indian entrepreneurs.

Mr. Shanmugaratnam presented SICCI’s annual Singapore India Business Award to Mr. Satpal Khattar for his role in the promotion of economic ties between the two countries. The Singapore Indian entrepreneur awards for small, medium, and large businesses were also presented, for their performances within the City-State.

More In: International | News