The chemical industry has been a major part of the Singapore economy for many years, based on a strong foundation as a major oil refining centre with a long history, and strategically placed at the heart of the Asia-Pacific region. In recent years the pharmaceuticals industry has also seen major growth, so that chemistry and chemical engineering science now make a very significant contribution to Singapore's economy.

In order to strengthen this position and to foster future development to grow from dependence solely on manufacturing to secure a more knowledge dependant, high tech research and development based business environment, Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and Economic Development Board (EDB) looked at how to bolster the local science and technology base. As a result, the Institute of Chemical and Engineering Sciences (ICES) came into being, to provide highly trained R&D manpower, to establish a strong science base and to develop technology and infrastructure to support future growth.

Starting from a small centre in the National University of Singapore (NUS), ICES was established as an autonomous national research institute under A*STAR on October 1st 2002. Since that time, we have grown rapidly. We have established world leading laboratories, pilot facilities, and the necessary infrastructure to carry out a world class research programme in chemistry and chemical engineering sciences.


ICES’ mission is to advance science and develop innovative technology to further economic growth and improve lives.