Speech by Mr Azmoon Ahmad, Chairman of AMP Group, at the Community in Review 2015 Seminar on Saturday 14 February 2015 at 9.45am at Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre

Speakers, Distinguished Guests, Ladies & Gentlemen

I would like to warmly welcome you to the Community in Review 2015 Seminar.

  1. The Community in Review Seminar is an event held annually to discuss issues that are pertinent to the Malay/Muslim community as well as the larger Singaporean society.
  2. It is a platform that we provide to the community for intellectual discourse on a regular basis on issues that concern them, much like our National Convention of Singapore Muslim Professionals that we hold every decade, with the third one held just three years ago, in 2012.
  3. 3rd Convention Updates
  4. Prior to the 3rd Convention, 6 panels comprising experts and practitioners in various disciplines were formed. They held intense discussions over a period of two years on longstanding and emerging issues affecting the Malay/Muslim community. A number of initiatives have since been undertaken.
  5. Education
  6. In education, the AMP Committee on Education was set up in August 2014 to review the Education Panel’s strategy of creating a ‘Community of Inspired Learners‘. This panel, which comprises academics, practitioners, and community activists, is currently looking into the strategies pertaining to education that were mooted during the Convention.
  7. Religion
  8. In the religious domain, the Religion Panel proposed the development of youth-centric programmes to encourage social responsibility and in-depth knowledge of Islam and Muslim societies. We have found that the current ALIVE programmes of the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore, MUIS, address this concern to a significant extent.
  9. In line with the spirit of the Convention, where all strategies can and should be owned by any organisation which has expertise in that particular area, this strategy of the Religion Panel will not be an area of focus for AMP as MUIS has the expertise in that area.
  10. Economics
  11. On the economic front, AMP will be commissioning a publication to articulate the constraints and challenges faced by Malay/Muslim businesses; and how they could thrive in the current business landscape. We hope to contribute towards taking entrepreneurship among Malay/Muslims to new levels.
  12. In addition, the publication also aims to generate interest in technopreneurship among the Malays. A significant proportion of Malays in the workforce and those graduating from post-secondary institutions have ITE and polytechnic qualifications. Most are in technology-related courses. Hence, this initiative taps on a key educational attribute of the Malay community.
  13. Another initiative that emerged from the Convention is the Debt Advisory Centre or DAC. It was mooted by the Economics Panel of the Convention. It is a one-stop centre that provides counselling for all kinds of debt, including those resulting from borrowing from illegal moneylenders.
  14. In justifying the setting up of DAC, it was felt that, while the community has made progress financially over the past decade, most of these are confined to the asset side of the community’s balance sheet. There was little in terms of what we knew about its liabilities.
  15. Anecdotal evidence suggested that debt was becoming a major problem in the community. As such, DAC was formed to not only help those in debt but also provide education as a preventive measure, and to undertake research.
Thank you.

Speakers, Distinguished Guests, Ladies & Gentlemen

I would like to warmly welcome you to the Community in Review 2015 Seminar.

  1. The Community in Review Seminar is an event held annually to discuss issues that are pertinent to the Malay/Muslim community as well as the larger Singaporean society.
  2. It is a platform that we provide to the community for intellectual discourse on a regular basis on issues that concern them, much like our National Convention of Singapore Muslim Professionals that we hold every decade, with the third one held just three years ago, in 2012.
  3. 3rd Convention Updates
  4. Prior to the 3rd Convention, 6 panels comprising experts and practitioners in various disciplines were formed. They held intense discussions over a period of two years on longstanding and emerging issues affecting the Malay/Muslim community. A number of initiatives have since been undertaken.
  5. Education
  6. In education, the AMP Committee on Education was set up in August 2014 to review the Education Panel’s strategy of creating a ‘Community of Inspired Learners‘. This panel, which comprises academics, practitioners, and community activists, is currently looking into the strategies pertaining to education that were mooted during the Convention.
  7. Religion
  8. In the religious domain, the Religion Panel proposed the development of youth-centric programmes to encourage social responsibility and in-depth knowledge of Islam and Muslim societies. We have found that the current ALIVE programmes of the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore, MUIS, address this concern to a significant extent.
  9. In line with the spirit of the Convention, where all strategies can and should be owned by any organisation which has expertise in that particular area, this strategy of the Religion Panel will not be an area of focus for AMP as MUIS has the expertise in that area.
  10. Economics
  11. On the economic front, AMP will be commissioning a publication to articulate the constraints and challenges faced by Malay/Muslim businesses; and how they could thrive in the current business landscape. We hope to contribute towards taking entrepreneurship among Malay/Muslims to new levels.
  12. In addition, the publication also aims to generate interest in technopreneurship among the Malays. A significant proportion of Malays in the workforce and those graduating from post-secondary institutions have ITE and polytechnic qualifications. Most are in technology-related courses. Hence, this initiative taps on a key educational attribute of the Malay community.
  13. Another initiative that emerged from the Convention is the Debt Advisory Centre or DAC. It was mooted by the Economics Panel of the Convention. It is a one-stop centre that provides counselling for all kinds of debt, including those resulting from borrowing from illegal moneylenders.
  14. In justifying the setting up of DAC, it was felt that, while the community has made progress financially over the past decade, most of these are confined to the asset side of the community’s balance sheet. There was little in terms of what we knew about its liabilities.
  15. Anecdotal evidence suggested that debt was becoming a major problem in the community. As such, DAC was formed to not only help those in debt but also provide education as a preventive measure, and to undertake research.
Thank you.