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Singapore’s IMDA and MNOs collaborating to grow 5G talent pool

To ensure a steady flow of 5G-ready tech talent, Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) is partnering local mobile network operators to hire and reskill 1,000 professionals to support the country’s 5G roll-out.

Of these, 70% will be telecom professionals who are to be upskilled in the areas of 5G network, cybersecurity and solution engineering to future-proof their jobs, while the remaining 30% will be new entrants.

The demand for 5G professionals is expected to grow as Singapore’s 5G roll-out gathers momentum and more enterprises participate in the ecosystem.

Singapore’s two full-fledged nationwide 5G networks will be ready only by 2025, and will be built by Singtel and, separately, a joint venture between StarHub and M1. The full suite of 5G benefits includes much lower latency, the ability to connect many more devices, and a further boost to network speeds.

Lew Chuen Hong, Chief Executive, IMDA, said: “This effort extends Singapore’s momentum in 5G following our investment in building infrastructure capabilities. At the same time, to ensure we have a strong pipeline of 5G talent who are skilled and ready, IMDA is leading efforts to appoint credible training partners to develop 5G skills across the ecosystem.

“The first wave of training will begin at the end of 2020 with the MNOs’ 5G professionals.”

Under an earlier announced government TechSkills Accelerator initiative, IMDA has already set up 5G Workforce Transformation Committees (WTCs) with the MNOs to oversee the planning and development of their 5G workforce capabilities. In addition, IMDA will be appointing a consortium comprising National University of Singapore and Singapore Polytechnic as the 5G and Telecoms Programme Manager.

They will become strategic partners to aggregate hiring and training requirements from the WTCs and the wider 5G ecosystem players, so as to co-develop quality training to meet demand.

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