A cleaner Earth & fresh opportunities with the Singapore-Australia Green Economy Agreement

21/10/2022

The future economy’s one step closer. So the PAP Government is always hard at work, trying to provide more opportunities for Singapore and Singaporeans.

This time, it’s with the Singapore-Australia Green Economy Agreement (GEA). The GEA will speed up both countries’ transition towards a green and sustainable future, while creating good jobs and lowering carbon emissions too.

“It is the first such agreement of its kind between countries,” pointed out Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who led the delegation which co-signed the GEA in Canberra on Tuesday (Oct 18).  

“We hope that it will be a pathfinder for other countries, similarly to cooperate with one another to deal with what is a global problem.”

Yup. Climate change is the great battle of our time. Linking pro-environmental objectives with trade and the economy under the GEA will keep Singapore resilient on multiple fronts.

Green growth and the GEA’s benefits

For those of you planning to make your mark during this GEA-driven future economy, remember two words: Green growth.

Green growth involves natural assets being harnessed for their economic potential in sustainable ways.

With the GEA signed, there are opportunities highlighted if you’re keen to explore green growth sectors alongside Singapore.

These sectors include green goods and services, carbon trading and services, green finance, low-carbon solutions (including renewable energy, hydrogen, and carbon capture, utilisation and storage [CCUS] technologies), the circular economy (valorisation and waste management and reduction) and greening supply chains.

The GEA is developing policy frameworks to help these green growth sectors, well, grow.

This while fostering standardised trade rules and finding ways to kickstart new green technologies and cross-border cooperative projects. A solar farm developed with Singaporean technology and raw materials from Australia n the future? A supply chain using low-emission vehicles for and beyond Singapore? The GEA opens up these opportunities.     

The GEA in fact, can remove non-tariff barriers blocking cross-partner trade in green goods and service. Fundamentally, this lets businesses get their products out faster and smoother to more accessible markets.

17 joint initiatives and a reservoir of trust

The GEA’s wide-ranging and forward-looking. Unsurprising, since it took over a year to co-develop.    

“The scope for collaboration will include trade and investment; green and transition finance; carbon markets; clean energy, decarbonisation and technology; and business engagement and partnerships,” detailed PM Lee.  “And it will include 17 joint initiatives to start off with.”

“For example, establishing an MOU to facilitate business partnerships in priority green sectors; developing a list of environmental goods and services, which means then they can be given preferential treatment, and forming working groups to further cooperation in cross border electricity trade and sustainable aviation,” he continued.

And in fact, the GEA’s Canberra co-signing speaks to a bigger shared and positive history between Singapore and Australia: The GEA is part of their Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.

This ongoing (2015-) partnership covers all aspects of bilateral relations, deepening existing areas of cooperations while catalysing new ones.

So, our Singapore delegates formalising the GEA wasn’t the only thing happening during this working visit.

They also worked with their Australian counterparts on improving the resiliency of Singapore-Australia supply chains and nurturing more science research collaborations.

“You will do business with everybody but with countries where you have a deep established relationship of trust and confidence, you can do even more,” said PM Lee.

“And in the case of Singapore and Australia, we do have that reservoir of trust and confidence and that history, and we are working to deepen this.”   

All photos: PM Lee Facebook