The Singapore Boating Industry Association (SBIA) is organising a roundtable meeting with key Asian boating industry and public sector representatives during the Singapore Yacht Show next month. The invitational event, called the Asia Boating Dialogue, will be held on the morning of April 12 and will include a networking lunch.

YP Loke, chairman of SBIA, told IBI last week: “The objective of the Asia Boating Dialogue is to gather Asian interests in boating together for a discourse on regional boating and discuss what is needed in terms of a regional agenda to encourage boating development.

“Although Asian countries are at different stages of the development cycle, we have seen infrastructure development resulting in a growing marina network across south and east Asia. In some cases, regulation is lagging behind physical development.

“The Dialogue can be a platform for private and public sector representatives to work collectively to make processes in the region more user-friendly. It is a prerequisite to promoting the region as a single cruising destination.”

Loke added that industry players are encouraged to invite and bring along their public sector representatives in a move to engage government in the development of the leisure boating industry across South East Asia.

This is the second Asia Boating Dialogue to be hosted. The International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) and SBIA co-hosted the first event in 2015. The two events so far have been attended by delegates from countries such as Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Philippines and Australia.

Loke, who is also an ICOMIA Executive Council member, said: “Boating is likely to develop faster with a coordinated regional agenda, rather than a national one. The Asia Boating Dialogue aims to play a catalytic role in bringing the parties together.”

Udo Kleinitz, secretary general of ICOMIA, outlined: “ICOMIA is glad to see the initiative started with its support in 2015 being continued. Broad outreach of this kind requires sustained effort. We urge ICOMIA members in Asia and other associations to participate in this discussion with their public sector counterparts.”