Singapore is fast making a name for itself in oil rig production, with Keppel and SembCorp securing strong orders worldwide. That is helping the offshore and marine engineering sector to play much bigger role in Singapore's economy. Last year it contributed about S$2.1 billion in value added. And for the first nine months of this year, the sector accounted for the majority of the 33.2 percent growth in the transport engineering sector. Industry players say they remain upbeat about the sector's outlook.
With increasing demand for energy all over the world, offshore exploration for oil and gas will remain an important activity for offshore and marine businesses. Two Singapore companies, Keppel Corporation and SembCorp Marine, are benefiting from a growing demand for oil rigs. Together, they have secured more than 80 percent of the jack-up rig orders worldwide this year, placing Singapore firmly in the map for oil rig production. Keppel has secured orders worth S$8 billion since the beginning of this year, the latest being S$134 million of contracts from Allseas Group and Sevan Production. And, there seems to be no stopping the orders from flowing in. Keppel says 2006 will be a fairly strong year. The company intends to convert one of its yards in the Philippines to support its offshore and marine business.