By Mike Derrett

Following the merger and incorporation of the Superyacht Singapore Association into the Singapore Boating Industry Association (SBIA), the SBIA will feature as a supporter of the upcoming Singapore Yacht Show which takes place at Singapore’s One°15 Marina Club from the April 23-26, 2015.

The revitalised and enlarged association, under the leadership of the chairman YP Loke and vice chairman Arthur Tay, has been working alongside the Singapore Yacht Show to help develop the content of the two associated conferences – the Asia-Pacific Yachting Conference (APYC) and the Asia Boating Forum (ABF).

As the ICOMIA member for Singapore, SBIA is also hosting an ICOMIA initiative during the show to engage the Asian boating community. Headlined ICOMIA-The Asian Dialogue, this invitation-only meeting will be presided over by ICOMIA secretary general Tony Rice, and involve ICOMIA’s Asian members and key boating industry players.

Tony Rice said: “ICOMIA encourages and assists in the establishment of new boating associations. We already have eight members in Asia, and there could be more as the industry in the region becomes more institutionalised and organised. ICOMIA, as an international body, can be the catalyst to encourage the development of marine associations and assist in their regional marketing efforts. I welcome this initiative on our behalf by SBIA.”

YP Loke, chairman of SBIA, added: “We need to work collectively to make the processes in the region more user-friendly, as it is a key step to growing the market. This initiative is timely as the ASEAN Economic Community is coming into being this year, and our efforts will complement it.”

Countries currently off the boating radar, such as Sri Lanka and Indonesia, have expressed an interest in developing boating and nautical tourism in their markets. Boating infrastructure is being built in Vietnam and Cambodia ahead of a regulatory framework being introduced for boating.

A platform to discuss emerging market issues will help such countries grow their market in the formative stages of the development cycle.