Closing Remarks by Minister for Transport, Mr Chee Hong Tat at the Focus Group Discussion on Last Mile Delivery Issues

26 Jun 2024Speeches
1.     I want to thank everyone for spending your time with us this morning. We had a lot of very rich and fruitful discussions, outlining challenges, opportunities and even some solutions. Last mile delivery issues are multifaceted, something that we may not be able to solve immediately, but this has been a very good start.

2.     Some of the ideas that were raised may be implementable in the near term - the lower hanging fruits that we can do quite quickly if we put our minds and resources together. Others may need more time because they require changes in rules and infrastructure, especially existing infrastructure that has already been built. For these ideas, we will continue to work on them, but may need a little bit more time.

3.     Some of the ideas also require us to factor in for future plans. I think a few groups mentioned this as well - future planning for the new facilities when we do new developments, so that we do not repeat some of the existing challenges that we face. As we know, Rome was not built in a day, but we want to work together to make sure that all roads that we take can lead to Rome.

4.     Secondly, I also heard many good views and ideas, and I think the sharing of different perspectives is very important. It is really heartening to hear riders acknowledging that our security officers are also having a difficult time, that they have to enforce the rules, which is sometimes not set by them. Our MCST, our management also acknowledge that our riders do not have it easy either. They have a job to do.

5.     I think this is a good start, because once you have this understanding of one another's perspectives, then we can seek out win-win solutions for everybody.

6.     Last but not least, what's next? If we keep it only at the discussion level, and we do not follow through with action, then we would not be doing justice to all the good ideas we have heard today. So Minister Desmond Lee and I, and also our partners from NTUC, together with all of you, must work together to translate these good ideas into action.

7.     So one of the things that we have planned is a walk-the-ground session together with our stakeholders. But importantly, I think asking what we want to do will require all of us to chip in. All of us need to put in something, give something, so that in the end, we have something that all of us can take from. This is something that I hope we will be able to do for the next part of our discussion - to go back and process the good ideas, cluster them, and then think through what are some of those that we can do, what are some of those that we may need to discuss a bit more, but we want to now focus on translating them into action. 

8.     Now, these actions may require the government to relook into some of our rules. For example, some of you mentioned about whether we can create some transient parking outside of what we currently have. Some of you also mentioned about whether the government can provide some co-funding support for some of the good ideas. We are open to this. We will take a look and see what we can do, and, very importantly, set up social structures on the ground so that we are able to then work together with partners. Every project is different. Every site is different. The challenges that one mall face is going to be very different from the challenges faced by another mall. Challenges that a condo in Bishan face is going to be very different from the challenges faced by a condo in Woodlands. Not all sites have the same challenges, but what we can do across the different sites, across different locations, is to set up a social structure whereby we are able to pool together the different stakeholders for that location - the government, the unions, our operators or condo MCSTs, the security officers and of course, the riders. We want to be able to pull together the different stakeholders so that for every location, we can look for solutions and make things happen. 

9.     Thank you once again for your participation and contributions. I hope we can continue to count on your support for the next phase of this review and translate the good ideas into action.


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