STB ramps up focus on manpower skills, sustainability and wellness

To facilitate the path to recovery by capturing pent-up travel demand, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) will ramp up its focus on sustainability, urban wellness and manpower capabilities to future-proof the sector.

This year, to preserve good jobs and build up manpower capabilities to ensure a pipeline of quality tourism personnel, STB – together with the National Trades Union Congress, Hospitality and Consumer Business Cluster unions, Workforce Singapore and e2i, and the support of key trade associations – will launch the Tourism Careers Hub (TCH).

STB works towards developing manpower capabilities in the tourism sector

TCH will provide training and skills upgrading for tourism workers and businesses, as well as support for individuals interested in pursuing tourism careers.

Zishan Amir, exco member & chairman of safety council, Association of Singapore Attractions (ASA), said: “ASA hopes to mobilise our members to contribute and participate in the various programmes and services provided by the TCH. As part of this tripartite effort, ASA will also provide input on the types of training courses required to upskill our workers to meet the changing demands of the industry as we navigate a slow recovery.”

SHATEC (Singapore Hotel and Tourism Education Centre), established by the Singapore Hotel Association (SHA), will also play an active role in developing the capabilities of career seekers at the TCH, according to Kwee Wei-Lin, president, SHA.

As well, SHA is working closely with STB to develop a hotel sustainability roadmap with strategies and targets for the industry, set to be launched later this year. The initiative is in line with Singapore’s aspiration to be a top sustainable and innovative urban destination, with STB becoming a member of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) last year.

Kwee explained: “In our effort towards responsible hospitality, SHA set up the Hotel Sustainability Committee (HSC) in 2020 to drive industry-wide adoption of environmental sustainability practices by hotels so as to support the nation’s aspiration to promote Singapore as a green destination.” The HSC is chaired by Jeanne Ng, SHA board member and director of The Fullerton Hotels and Resorts.

Meanwhile, industry players are also stepping up their sustainability game.

Resorts World Sentosa became the first tourism business in South-east Asia to secure the GSTC Destination Criteria and Industry Criteria for Hotels certification last year.

Mandai Wildlife Group has also rolled out green initiatives such as the Mandai Environmental Sustainability Strategy and green procurement roadmap, while Sentosa Development Corporation and its island partners have set the ambitious target of achieving carbon neutrality by 2030.

To support Singapore’s push towards becoming a leading urban wellness haven, STB established the Wellness Tourism Roadmap which identified key strategies and initiatives to develop Singapore’s wellness offerings.

As part of its efforts, STB has formed a partnership with global fitness and wellness aggregator ClassPass to promote Singapore’s wellness offerings on the platform, with more than 80 businesses having signed up to date.

An inaugural wellness festival will also be launched in June 2022 to promote and increase the accessibility of Singapore’s wellness repertoire. To cater to the growing demand, the sector also witnessed new wellness-centric hotels, holistic wellness retreats and urban fitness experiences.

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