Speech by Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, at the COP27 Singapore Pavilion Closing Ceremony
Ladies and Gentlemen,
1 Good afternoon, and thank you for joining me at the inaugural Singapore Pavilion at COP27. I was very reluctant to be closing the Pavilion, because it’s become a home away from home and I’m sure many of you will feel nostalgic after spending two full weeks here at the Pavilion.
2 It has been an eventful and fast-paced two weeks here in Egypt. Each day, at our Pavilion, we dived deep into different themes related to climate action, such as Green Finance or Water and Food Resilience. We held a variety of programmes here, from insightful panel discussions and fireside chats, to launch events and even a youth hackathon on our very first day. We also forged new partnerships with like-minded partners – I was pleased to sign two Memorandums of Understanding on carbon markets cooperation with Papua New Guinea and Peru, right here at the Pavilion.
3 As much as the negotiation track of COP is important, the non-negotiation track is crucial to provide the energy, resources, and ideas for global climate action. In this respect, I would like to say thanks to three groups:
4 First, our partners. We started this Pavilion as we recognised the growing involvement of non-government stakeholders in climate action. More than 100 organisations joined us on this partnership, ranging from corporates and NGOs to academia and civil society groups. Thank you to the corporates for sponsoring us, as well as the delicious food and drinks for the participants attending the events at our Pavilion. Here I would like to make a special mention of Temasek and GenZero for being our strong supporters. I would also like to thank our media partner, The Straits Times, for keeping Singaporeans back home updated with stories on our Pavilion and developments at COP27, as well as our events and publicity partners, Pico and Redhill, for successfully organising and creating buzz for the events. A big round of applause for our partners; they have been wonderful! I hope that the Pavilion has been a home away from home here in Sharm-El Sheikh, and more importantly, an opportunity to connect with each other, find common ground, and forge meaningful partnerships to further climate action. Even though Singapore is very small, many of us got to meet each other here, because we are usually in different parts, sometimes busy and doing our own things. But here we are gathered because we have a common cause. And that common purpose has found its way and brought us here to the Pavilion.
5 Second, to our visitors, and the many new friends we met over food and drinks. I hope that our Pavilion has given you a better understanding of our commitment to climate action. We shared with you our whole-of-nation approach to implementing climate action, as laid out in the Singapore Green Plan 2030. I hope that you were able to take away something for your own country or organisation. Likewise, we have benefited tremendously from your unique perspectives and robust conversations on how we can build a low-carbon, climate-resilient future. Your input, your suggestions, your perspectives enrich our experience and give us a much better understanding of the world that we are operating in. Some of the problems are common, some of us have different issues, but I think that diversity has really helped inform our discussions, plans, and also our strategies.
6 Third, to the inter-agency organising team comprising PMO-SG, MTI, and MSE. It has been an immense undertaking over the past months planning the Pavilion and keeping it up and running every day. The Pavilion was truly a whole-of-government effort. MFA and Cairo Mission were instrumental in overcoming operational challenges that cropped up on the ground. Numerous agencies contributed to our exhibits and programming from back home in Singapore. For example, our national water agency PUB which sponsored NEWBrew (which I understand is quite popular), is our own brand of beer made using clean and high-quality recycled water. It has been a big hit at both our Pavilion and back home! So, I would like to pay special mention to PMO-NCCS, MTI, MOT, AGC, MOF – thank you everybody. We have a great team from the whole of government, you have been so generous with your time and ideas. We really couldn’t survive without you – so thank you so much again! And I think you have been really great ambassadors, helping us to spread the message, giving Egyptians and visitors from around an impression of Singapore. I am sure that they will leave with nice memories of the Pavilion.
7 Back on a more serious note, the COP27 Presidency calls for us to work together for implementation. As the effects of the climate crisis will reach every sector and part of society, our response will take nothing less. At the heart of it, the Singapore Pavilion is about building a future of green possibilities. But we cannot do this alone. Hence, I am heartened to see the pledges made by visitors to our Pavilion, to play their part in building this future – no action is too small. What matters is that we act now, and to the best of our abilities.
8 Thanks to the positive feedback that we have received from you on the pavilion this year, I am pleased to announce that the Singapore Pavilion will be back next year at the next COP. We look forward to working closely with our partners on an even stronger line up of events and engagements to help Singaporeans connect with international counterparts. I look forward to meeting all of you at the Singapore Pavilion at COP28 in Dubai next year. And once again, thank you so much for your support and for being there for us. I am very grateful that we are able to put the Pavilion to good use, it has served the purpose that we set out to achieve. From the bottom of my heart, to the many who are here and not here – thank you, and see you next year!