Singapore has offered itself as a production and technical support base for Japanese marine equipment companies, Business Times reports. At a two-day technical seminar, Economic Development Board director Chow Tat Kong urged Japanese marine equipment companies to set up innovation and applications engineering centres in Singapore to provide better support to their customers. 'Singapore offers a value for money manufacturing location for the marine industry cluster, with our technical expertise, well-trained workforce as well as our strong base in heavy engineering, precision engineering and electronics industries,' Mr Chow said. Since Asia was Japan's largest export market, Singapore was an excellent location for Japanese manufacturers to expand their overseas production facilities, he said. In 1994, Japan's ship machinery exports to Asia and the Middle East totalled 59.5 billion yen (about HK$4.15 billion), or 42 per cent of its total exports.