SERI Deputy Director Rémy Hübschi at the International Technical and Professional Education and Training Conference in Singapore

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The deputy director of the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI), Rémy Hübschi, spoke at the International Technical and Professional Education and Training (TPET) Conference on 28 June at the invitation of the Institute of Technical Education in Singapore. During his visit he also held official talks, accompanied by Barbara Fontanellaz, director of the Swiss Federal University for Vocational Education and Training (SFUVET). The itinerary included visits to local and Swiss institutions involved in Singapore’s VET efforts under the broad-based Skills Future programme.

The official talks between Rémy Hübschi, accompanied by Ms Fontanellaz, and Minister of State Siow Huang Gan as well as other people from the Ministry of Education focused on current challenges in the VET policies of both countries. Singapore was inspired by Switzerland’s dual VET system when it launched far-reaching reforms to its own system a few years ago, and has since been strengthening these efforts through the Skills Future initiative. Other stops included the Nanyang Polytechnic, a flagship institution in vocational education and training with which the SFUVET has been cooperating for a number of years, and the Nestlé R&D Centre, which supports vocational education and training in Singapore.

The motto of the 2022 TPET Conference was -Pivoting TPET for a Sustainable Future: Potential, Possibilities and Partnerships-. In his keynote speech on the Swiss VET/PET system to around 600 participants from many different countries, Mr Hübschi emphasised the crucial correlation between practice-oriented training and the labour market. In Switzerland this is guaranteed by the fact that the economic sector sets the individual qualification requirements for basic professional and higher vocational training.

Singapore and Switzerland maintain particularly close relations in the fields of education and research. The two countries have conducted an in-depth dialogue in these areas at both ministerial and technical level for a number of years. In terms of the number of bilateral research projects supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), Singapore ranks 29th in the world, in first place among the ASEAN countries.