Event Recap: 2021 MSC Connexions Forum

Attracting, engaging, and growing talent is at the heart of the Singapore Maritime Foundation’s mission of developing a healthy maritime workforce. As the industry prepares the way for digitalisation and sustainability, among many other upcoming trends, the skills of maritime talent have to keep pace with these changes.
It is apt that the theme for the sixth MSC Connexions Forum held on 8 November 2021 was centred around “Skills Upgrading Programmes for the Maritime Sector”. Organised by the Maritime Singapore Connect (MSC) Office, a unit under the Singapore Maritime Foundation (SMF), the annual Forum is targeted towards Human Resource leaders and manager from the maritime cluster that shape the changemakers of tomorrow. Without a future-ready pool of talent, transformation within maritime will remain stagnant.
Ms Tan Beng Tee opening the Forum
This year, the Forum featured speakers from Workforce Singapore, Singapore Polytechnic and the Employment and Employability Institute (e2i). Opening the session, SMF Executive Director Ms Tan Beng Tee remarked on the how “both hardware and in particular software play important roles towards the success of any organisation”. Being a small nation without natural resources, Singapore must redirect investments towards its people.
Drawing in Fresh Faces
Mr David Lee introducing SMF’s initiatives
With its strong connections to the private and public sector, SMF is well-positioned to plug talent into the growing maritime sector, especially those at the tertiary education level. These young Singaporeans will lead the charge and take Maritime Singapore to greater heights. Senior Manager of Corporate Communications and MSC Office at SMF, Mr David Lee was the first speaker and he shared on how SMF’s strategic framework of Connectivity, Innovation and Talent will achieve this goal.
SMF’s Strategic Framework
  • Connecting Singapore to the world and the world to Singapore
  • Connecting the maritime ecosystem
  • Connecting talent with industry
Showcasing creativity in digital/innovative solutions from Singapore
  • Attracting talent
  • Engaging talent
  • Growing talent
Guided by this strategic framework, SMF has designed a suite of initiatives that range from scholarships and career fairs to a structured internship program that will be unveiled in 2022.
Equipping Maritime Talent with Future-Proof Skills
Moving into the experienced segment of talent, Mr Wong Koon Yin, Assistant Director (Manufacturing Division) at Workforce Singapore spoke on the organisation’s Career Conversion Programme (CCP) for Sea Transport Professionals and Associates.
Mr Wong Koon Yin speaking on the Career Conversion Programme
The programme focuses on structured reskilling efforts targeted at both PMET and non-PMET workers that are either seeking a mid-career switch, facing redundancy, or seeking to expand their skillset. As the famous adage goes, “Change is the only constant” and maritime professionals will have to consistently sharpen their skills to remain relevant in today’s dynamic climate. Partnering with the Singapore Polytechnic (SP), Enterprise Singapore and the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), the courses are co-funded by WSG and employers.
Capt Mohd Salleh Ahmad Sarwan (left) and Mr Wong Jian Chang (right)
Elaborating further on WSG’s partnership with SP on skills upgrading, Director of the Singapore Maritime Academy at SP, Capt Mohd Salleh Ahmad Sarwan dived into the course details of the CCP offered at the Polytechnic before Mr Wong Jian Chang, Director of the PACE Academy at SP joined him on stage to answer the audience’s questions.
Easing New Talent into Maritime
Taking the stage, Ms Judy Tan, Deputy Director of Transport and Logistics at e2i highlighted the programs developed to support maritime companies across the different stages from recruitment and training to job redesigning.
Ms Judy Tan speaking on the Structured Mentorship Programme
Notably, the structured mentorship programme designed in conjunction with SMF that seeks to tackle challenges in talent retention by pairing mentors to new hires. The 60 identified mentors will undergo a training where they will have the opportunity to refresh and attain new skills. Armed with new knowledge, mentors are better equipped to train hires on the job while offering them a comprehensive view of the industry. The program is slated to launch in 2022.
Keen to be part of the Mentoring Program for Talent Development and Succession? Drop Ms Rosalind Tan an email at rosalind_tan@e2i.com.sg
Missed the live session? Catch a replay of the 2021 MSC Connexions Forum here. Download the speaker slides.


Inaugural MSC Maritime Digital Challenge Grand Finals Prize Presentation

Over 129 tertiary students across 35 teams took part in the inaugural MSC Maritime Digital Challenge that seeks to plug Singapore students with a passion for technology into the maritime industry.
Students from the Singapore Management University and Nanyang Polytechnic were announced as winners of the challenges posed by Eastport Maritime, Kanda and Torvald Klaveness at the Prize Presentation held on 13 November 2021.

MSC Maritime Digital Challenge 2021

Three challenge statements, 35 teams, 129 students and 12 finalist teams from 4 universities & 3 polytechnics. Catch behind-the-scene highlights of the MSC Maritime Digital Challenge 2021.

Singapore Maritime Foundation | MSC Maritime Digital Challenge 2021

Catch highlights of the MSC Maritime Digital Challenge 2021. We thank Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Transport Mr. Chee Hong Tat for being our Guest-of-Honour at the event.

SMF New Year Conversations 2022: Year-in-Perspective Video

The past two years of learning to live with Covid-19 has been challenging, but Maritime Singapore has remained resilient. What are the fundamental tenets that attract companies to anchor their business in Singapore and grow their operations here? And what more can be done to leverage on Singapore’s strengths to enhance its attractiveness as a global business hub for maritime companies? How will the Singapore Maritime Foundation organize its work around Connectivity, Innovation and Talent to strengthen the maritime ecosystem? Find out in this Year-in-Perspective video.

SMF New Year Conversations 2022: Opportunities Amid Disruptions

The 2022 SMF New Year Conversations that took place on 13 January 2022 was graced by Guest-of-Honour Mr S Iswaran, Minister for Transport & Minister-in-charge of Trade Relations. Over 250 industry leaders across the breadth of maritime attended physically and virtually.
Singapore was announced to have secured the overall top spot as an international maritime centre for the fifth consecutive time in the DNV-Menon Leading Maritime Cities 2022 report.
Thank you to our industry partners for your strong support.

Mr. Lars Kastrup


Mr. Lars Kastrup is the Chief Executive Officer of Pacific International Lines (Pte) Ltd (PIL).

Prior to joining PIL, Mr. Kastrup was CEO of NOL/APL, and subsequently assumed the role of Executive Vice President, Strategy and M&A at CMA CGM Group. A veteran in the global shipping industry with over 30 years of experience, Mr Kastrup’s other roles include Executive Vice President of Assets at CMA CGM Group heading up CMA Terminals, CMA Ships, Container Logistics as well as regional carriers such as MacAndrews, OPDR and Mercosul; as well as Vice President at AP Moller-Maersk.
Mr. Kastrup complemented his tertiary education with leadership and management training at Penn State University and The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Ms. Angeline Teo


Ms. Angeline Teo is the Managing Director and Head of Global Transportation and Offshore, Global Corporate Banking at OCBC Bank which focuses on the maritime, aviation, land & port ecosystems.
Ms. Teo has spent over three decades in maritime finance. Prior to OCBC, Ms. Teo was working at ING Bank, ABN Amro and DnB in Singapore focusing on maritime and offshore.
Ms. Teo graduated from the National University of Singapore with a degree in Business Administration.

Mr. John Martin


Mr. John Martin began his career in London in 1989 with Richards Hogg Lindley Average Adjusters, and qualified as a Fellow of the UK Association of Average Adjusters in 2000.
At RHL he worked in their offices in Australia, Taiwan and Hong Kong. In 2003 he joined Gard Hong Kong, as a claims handler. Mr. Martin also worked in Gard Japan, and in 2014 he moved to Singapore to set up the Gard Singapore office.
Besides running Gard Singapore, Mr. Martin also heads the P&I and H&M claims units and is the Senior Claims Representative for Gard in Asia.

Mr. Cyril Ducau


Mr. Cyril Ducau is the Chief Executive Officer of Eastern Pacific Shipping Pte Ltd, a leading shipping company headquartered in Singapore for the past 30 years.

He is also currently the Chairman of Kenon Holdings Ltd and a member of the board of directors of Gard P&I (Bermuda) Ltd. and of the Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation Limited, which was established by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore. He was previously Head of Business Development of Quantum Pacific Advisory Limited in London from 2008 to 2012 and acted as Director and Chairman of Pacific Drilling SA between 2011 and 2018.
Prior to joining Quantum Pacific Advisory Limited, Mr. Ducau was Vice President in the Investment Banking Division of Morgan Stanley & Co. International Ltd. in London between 2000 and 2008.
Mr. Ducau graduated from ESCP Europe Business School (Paris, Oxford, Berlin) and holds a Master of Science in business administration and a Diplom Kaufmann.