The sixth Trenchless Asia 2012 exhibition and conference took place in Singapore at the Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre, 2-4 July and for the first time was co-located with Singapore International Water Week (SIWW), World Cities Summit and CleanEnviro Summit. The combined attendance was recorded at more than 18,500 visitors from 104 countries.

The exhibition featured more than 50 companies from 10 countries and included country pavilions from Singapore and Germany. Platinum sponsors of the event were Vermeer Asia Pacific and Gold Sponsors, Digital Control Inc (DCI).

“The decision to hold the event alongside SIWW proved to be extremely successful, with exhibitors reporting excellent enquiries from visitors looking for trenchless solutions” comments Paul Harwood, Show Director. “The attendance by visitors who signed up specifically to attend the event was supplemented by a high number of attendeeswho crossed over from SIWW exhibition, thus expanding the visitor profile to include an influential audience of international water industry experts and policymakers from around the world.”

The Prime Minister of Singapore, Mr Lee HsienLoong was the guest of honour at the official opening ceremony and reception. During his welcome address he highlighted the relevance of the events to match the overall theme of ‘Water solutions for liveable and sustainable cities’.

The two day conference was opened by Prof Sam Ariaratnam, Chairman of International Society for Trenchless Technology (ISTT). Keynote presentations followed by Mr Tan Yok Gin, Assistant Chief Executive (Operations) of Singapore’s Public Utilities Board (PUB) and Mr Mohammed AkhirMohdJiwa, Director General Sewerage Services, Ministry of Energy, Green Technology & Water, Malaysia.

In his address, Tan reinforced the necessity for urban conurbations to adopt trenchless technologies and illustrated Singapore’s extensive works and commitment to preserving the environment through trenchless engineering works. He reported that Singapore’s current projects include a major sewer rehabilitation programme to refurbish 1 000 km of sewers within Punggol&Serangoon Reservoir Catchment. In addition, Singapore has an ongoing programme to rehabilitate sewers throughout the country.

Mr Mohammed AkhirMohdJiwa, who was also a speaker at the ISTT’s 2010 international conference in Singapore, updated delegates on the significant advances in the use of trenchless technology in Malaysia. In 2011, a budget of RM 5.6 billion (approximately USD 1.7 billion) was approved to improve the sewerage infrastructure of the Greater Kuala Lumpur/ KlangValley. This funding will enable the construction of regional sewage treatment plants, sewer networks and upgrading the existing sewerage facilities. The project which is already underway is expected to be completed by 2020.

The conference programme was organised in conjunction with ISTT and featured presentations on a number of new technologies, as well as many case studies to illustrate the challenges and solutions of trenchless works around the world.