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Singapore Economic Development Board

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About Singapore Economic Development Board

Singapore Economic Development Board is a government agency under the Ministry of Trade and Industry. It is responsible for strategies that enhance the country's position as a center for business and talent. Its mission is to create economic growth, with vibrant business and good job opportunities. It was founded in 1961 and is based in Singapore.

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Latest Singapore Economic Development Board News

How Singapore Became Asia's Launch Pad for Sustainable Innovation & Tech

Feb 20, 2024

Published 1 day ago.About a 7 minute read. Image: Singapore's Gardens by the Bay features 18 solar-powered 'supertrees' that act as vertical gardens, generate solar power, act as air venting ducts for nearby conservatories, and collect rainwater. | Elina Sazonova We spoke with Damian Chan, EVP of the Singapore Economic Development Board, to learn more about how it is driving sustainability and the energy transition in the island nation. Climate change is exerting profound and multifaceted impacts on the Global South,especially the Asia-Pacific region — exacerbating existing vulnerabilitiesand posing unprecedented challenges including rising temperatures, alteredprecipitation patterns, and more frequent and intense extreme-weather events.Coastal areas are particularly vulnerable to sea-level rise — which threatensdensely populated cities and low-lying island nations. Despite the growing, climate-related issues impacting the region, Singaporeremains a global hub of innovation, commerce and trade. A regional leader intech and entrepreneurship for decades, the island nation has recently gained anew brand image for its considerable efforts to mitigate and adapt to climatechange. It has fostered local and international cooperation to adoptsustainable-development practices and innovative solutions to address thisregion's complex and interconnected challenges. The Singapore Economic Development Board The Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) isone institution that has supported exemplary work in climate-tech innovation. Asa government agency under the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the EDB isresponsible for strategies that enhance Singapore’s position as a global centerfor business, innovation and talent. Its mission is to create sustainableeconomic growth while creating vibrant business and job opportunities withinSingapore. The EDB is also playing an active role in helping Singapore achieve its net-zero by2050 goals by collecting a carbon tax from companies to fund decarbonizationinitiatives. The organization expects its carbon-tax revenue to reach $1billion Singaporean dollars (~$US744K) within 5 years, and is using it toprovide financial assistance and funding to the following programs focusing ondecarbonization: Water-Efficiency Fund — supports companies with the implementation of water-recycling systems,adoption of water-conservation technologies or conducting studies toidentify water-saving opportunities. Energy-EfficiencyFund — companies that adopt energy-efficient technologies to build capabilitiesand decarbonize early can receive up to 70 percent of qualifying costs. In 2021, through EDB, Singapore’s government also announced that it wouldtransform JurongIsland into a Sustainable Energy and ChemicalsPark that operates sustainably and aims to export sustainable products for the globalmarket — as part of the Economy pillar of the Singapore Green Plan for2030 . The EDB has also supported the growth of climate tech startups through: EcoLabs Centre of Innovation for Energy: Focuses oncollaborations that can help energy technology developers explore commercialopportunities, and has established an international network of accessibletest beds in companies around the world. GenZero: Investment platform company that aims toaccelerate decarbonization for future generations toward a net-zero worldthrough impactful and scalable solution with the ability to drive positiveimpact for our planet and people, while generating sustainable returns Sustainable Brands® spoke with DamianChan , EVP of the Singapore EDB, tolearn more about its focus on sustainability and the energy transition. How is Singapore so driven to lead the global movement on sustainable business practice, entrepreneurship and innovation? What role does the EDB intend to play in this? Damian Chan: The global shift towards a lower-carbon economy requires allsectors, especially the energy and chemicals sector, to transform and innovate.Singapore intends to support our climate goals by decarbonizing existingindustries while growing opportunities in the green economy. EDB is working withcompanies to improve existing plants' energy efficiency and ensure that newplants are best-in-class. We are in active conversations with energy andchemical companies on energy-transition projects and opportunities, and we valuethem as partners in our energy-transition journey. Many of them havelong-standing relationships with Singapore and possess the capabilities neededto innovate solutions for a more sustainable world in areas such as developingemerging low-carbon technologies, carbon capture, utilization, storage, andlow-carbon hydrogen. Singapore’s capabilities make us an ideal test bed for research in these areas,and many of these initiatives are in pilot stages with potential to scale up infuture. For example, the Singapore Energy Centre — co-founded by NUS,NTU and ExxonMobil — focuses on developing and scaling new technologiesin energy, as well as carbon capture andstorage .Singapore’s LCERFI further reinforces our commitment toward innovation as an enabler for a moresustainable industry. S$55million from this fund has already been awarded to 12hydrogen, CCUS projects; and an additional S$129 million have been earmarkedfor its second phase. A transformed and more sustainable energy and chemicals sector will continue toremain an attractive growth sector for Singapore. Driven by a growing middleclass, Southeast Asia is expected to consume 49 percent of the additions topetrochemical production capacity in the world by 2026. Demand for fuels isexpected to continue rising in developing markets such as Southeast Asia till2050. Chemicals are also essential to a low-carbon economic system, as they areneeded to create lighter and more advanced plastics — which are used in solarpanels, wind-turbine blades, thermal insulation for buildings, and electricvehicle parts. EDB will continue to partner with like-minded companies in driving investmentsand innovation in the energy transition, and assess economic opportunitiesarising from green growth and recovery to invest in new growth areas. Thesecollective efforts will enable us to pursue growth for the industry in acompetitive and sustainable manner, while supporting our overall transition to alow-carbon economy. How does the EDB support this vision and what is its primary objective in combating climate change? DC: In 2021, EDB outlined plans to transform Jurong Island into a Sustainable Energy and ChemicalsPark that operates sustainably and exports sustainable products globally. As thecornerstone of Singapore’s energy and chemicals sector, Jurong Island must pivotto remain competitive and lead the sector’s transition to capture green growthopportunities. We aim for the sector to increase its output of sustainableproducts by four times from 2019 levels and achieve more than six million tonnesof carbon abatement per annum from low-carbon solutions by 2050. With the shift in focus towards a Sustainable Jurong Island, we expect Singaporeto become a more attractive location for sustainable investments as they striveto meet the demand of consumers who opt for more sustainable alternatives. Wehave continued to see a healthy flow of investments from energy and chemicalscompanies that are keen to expand their global presence, grow new capabilitiesto capture growth opportunities in the region and transform their business to beenvironmentally sustainable. For example, Neste has recently expanded its biorefinery in Singapore that will produce sustainable aviationfuel ;Cariflex is investing in a polyisoprene latexplant ;and Arkema’s bio-factory will be built on Jurong Island to produce high-performance polymers made fromsustainable materials. With climate risks rising globally, what do you envision Singapore’s role to be in the carbon-services market? DC: As an aspiring carbon-services and trading hub, Singapore is well-placedto seize new growth opportunities in this space and help companies buildcapabilities and partnerships in carbon accounting and carbon markets. Based ona study commissioned by EDB and Enterprise Singapore (ESG), Singapore canleverage its position as an established professional services, trading andfinancial hub; as well as its proximity to Southeast Asia to develop as acarbon-services and trading hub. The study estimates that this could create aprojected gross value add of US$1.8-5.6 billion, depending on internationalclimate-change developments. There has been a steady growth in Singapore’scarbon services ecosystem to date. EDB and ESG supported the growth and additionof at least 13 carbon-services firms in 2022, which brings the total number toover 100. This expands Singapore’s offerings in carbon management such as incarbon project development, advisory and trading.

Singapore Economic Development Board Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • When was Singapore Economic Development Board founded?

    Singapore Economic Development Board was founded in 1961.



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