Leaders from ASEAN capitals on July 7 inked a Singapore Declaration on sustainable environment during the closing of their two-day meeting held in the island country.
ASEAN city leaders gathered around Low Yen Ling, chairman of the Mayors' Committee of Singapore, as she signs the Singapore Declaration at the end of the 6th Meeting of Governors/Mayors of Asean Capitals (MGMAC) at Parliament House on July 7.
The 6th Meeting of Governors/Mayors of ASEAN Capitals (MGMAC) was attended by more than 40 delegates from 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
The Vietnamese delegation comprised leaders of Hanoi and Hai Phong cities in the north, Binh Duong province in the south and Quang Ngai province from the central region. Vice Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Van Suu represented the delegation to sign the Singapore Declaration.
Chaired by Singaporean Chairman of Mayors' Committee Low Yen Ling, the MGMAC programme line-up enabled mayors and governors to discuss liveable and sustainable city challenges with their peers and share experiences from what they are doing in their cities. Topics of discussion included integrated solutions for water management, building environmentally friendly cities and the role of smart technology in achieving sustainable development goals.
In a speech before the signing of the declaration at the Parliament House, Singaporean Minister for Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli said it is urgent for ASEAN to take action against climate change.
He cited an assessment by HSBC in March this year which said five out of 10 countries that are most vulnerable to climate change are in South Asia and Southeast Asia – namely India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
Participants agreed that in addition to efforts of the entire society, ASEAN capitals ought to work together to overcome difficulties and foster a united and resilient ASEAN.
During their meeting, ASEAN delegates visited Marina Barrage and Bukit Panjang Community Club, which achieved a Green Mark Gold Plus certification awarded by the Building and Construction Authority.
They also met with Foreign Affairs Minister Vivian Balakrishnan, and paid a courtesy call to Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin.
MGMAC was started in 2013 by then Jakarta Governor Joko Widodo as a platform for mayors and governors to discuss topics relating to the development of their capital cities, and to strengthen links between them. This year, Singapore hosted the event as a precursor to the World Cities Summit, which runs between July 8 and 12.