Committee of Supply Debate 2018

Committee of Supply Debate 2018
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Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen, Second Minister for Defence Mr Ong Ye Kung and Senior Minister of State for Defence Dr Maliki bin Osman outlined MINDEF's focus areas for the coming year at MINDEF's Committee of Supply (COS) debate in Parliament on Friday, 2 March 2018.

Steady Defence Expenditure

The defence budget has declined as a proportion of total Government expenditure over the years. With the SAF modernised and doing more with its people and technology, defence expenditure as a proportion of Government expenditure has fallen to around 19%.

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MINDEF vs Government expenditure

As a result of steady investments in defence, Singapore need not increase its defence expenditure radically to catch up with our ASEAN neighbours.

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MINDEF vs ASEAN Defence expenditure
Long-Term Investments

The SAF will not compromise on its defence capabilities. Instead, we have found ways to optimise our resources and stretch every dollar, such as upgrading existing equipment where possible to avoid buying new platforms.

The SAF began with a handful of assets. Over the years, every dollar has been stretched in the evolution of our systems and capabilities, creating the modern and networked force of today.

Click on the image for a closer look

Counter Terrorism and Cyber Defence Infographic
Counter-Terrorism and Cyber Defence

The SAF is committed to stopping the spread of terrorism internationally and domestically.

Since 2014, the SAF has contributed assets and deployed personnel and platforms in support of the Defeat-ISIS efforts. The SAF will further deploy troops to Iraq later this year, to support the evolving operational needs of the coalition forces in Iraq.

Domestically, The SAF will continue to enhance training for homeland security operations. Over a year, 18,000 servicemen have been trained for homeland security operations at the Island Defence Training Institute.

The SAF will continue to strengthen coordination with other government agencies to respond to terror threats. One way is through routine joint training sessions with the Singapore Police Force. The SAF's troopers and Singapore Police officers will hone their tactical competencies of operating together through a series of training scenarios.

To combat the growing cyber threat, MINDEF will build up its cyber force. In 2018, MINDEF will take in the pilot batch of NSFs under the Cyber NSF Scheme. We will also invest in cyber defence training and exercise infrastructure.

Smart Defence

The SAF will harness new technologies such as artificial intelligence, data analytics and unmanned platforms to overcome resource constraints.

  • Unmanned Watch Towers will be introduced to enhance the SAF's protection of key installation operations at Jurong Island. These towers will stretch our coastal surveillance capabilities whilst optimising manpower resources. The unmanned watch tower will also enhance joint coordination efforts between the SAF and relevant agencies such as the Police Coast Guard.

    Unmanned Watch Tower
  • Trials for the RSAF's Smart Airbase are ongoing. The envisaged Smart Airbases will enable the RSAF to be more agile, resilient and efficient in air power generation.

    There will also be more automation and unmanned systems in areas such as aircraft inspection and maintenance, airbase security, and runway damage assessments and repairs.

    Click on the image below to view the full infographic.

    Smart Airbase Infographic
  • To build a sharper and smarter Navy, the Republic of Singapore Navy is harnessing the latest technological developments to enhance capabilities and operational effectiveness in protecting Singapore.

    The RSN's smart defence initiatives include:

    • Unmanned vessels to enhance maritime security and homeland defence
    • Leveraging data analytics for predictive maintenance
    • Smart base access
    • Smart surveillance to enhance maritime security

    Click on the image below to view the full infographic.

    Maritime Security Infographic
Enhancing the NS Experience

National Service (NS) remains the bedrock of today's strong and credible SAF. With the rise of demographic challenges and unconventional security threats, there is a need to do more with less.

We will achieve this by enhancing individual ability, strengthening system efficiency, and leveraging technology.

Click on the image below to view the full infographic.

Enhancing NS Experience Infographic
Total Defence

Since 1984, Total Defence has been our means of rallying the public to defend Singapore on all fronts. Amidst a new security environment, Social and Psychological Defence are increasingly important. Every Singaporean plays a part in ensuring Singapore's defence.

Here are three individuals who have put Total Defence into action in their own ways.

  • Chong Yu Lun, a filmmaker and regular participant in ciNE65, who continues to express his take on what it means to keep Singapore strong through film.
  • Mr Rajendran Mathan Prasath, an SAFVC Volunteer who performed CPR on an elderly lady suffering a cardiac arrest while he was off-duty.
  • Mr Mohamed Shahmir Anwar, a teacher at Greendale Secondary School, who facilitated the Total Defence strategy card game, Guardians of the City (GOTC), for his students.

In the face of terrorism, a Community Response Module has been developed to complement the SGSecure effort. It will equip off-duty MINDEF/SAF personnel with the knowledge and skills to aid others and support first responders (e.g. Singapore Police Force, Singapore Civil Defence Force, Singapore Armed Forces etc.) in the event of a terrorist attack.

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