Secretary-General of ASEAN, H.E. Le Luong Minh, welcomed the President of Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) and former President of the Republic of Indonesia, H.E. Dr. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, yesterday at the ASEAN Secretariat to discuss potential collaboration on green growth. Currently, five ASEAN Member States are members of GGGI: Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Viet Nam.
Dr. Yudhoyono highlighted the need to work collaboratively to ensure that green growth concept be adopted by all countries, especially by the emerging and developing economies. He updated on the progress of GGGI’s work and projects with governments, including a number of ASEAN Member States and international organisations. He reiterated the need to support countries in fulfilling their targets to curb the greenhouse gas emission, as pledged in their respective Intended Nationally Determined Contributions to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. He proposed four core areas which could serve as cooperation with ASEAN, i.e. energy, green city development, land use and water conservation.
With Southeast Asia being one of the most vulnerable regions to climate change impacts, Secretary-General Minh emphasized that addressing climate change and promoting low carbon development is one of the priorities of ASEAN. He also shared on ASEAN’s efforts in addressing climate change, such as through promoting sustainable peatland management to reduce greenhouse gas emission from peatland fires, and implementing the ASEAN Agreement on Transboundary Haze Pollution. Secretary-General Minh also highlighted that ASEAN, while being rich in biodiversity but remained vulnerable to habitat and biodiversity loss due to climate change, places high importance on biodiversity conservation, as reflected in the establishment of a dedicated centre for biodiversity based in Los Banos, Philippines. He recognized that there are synergies and mutually-enforcing action-plans between ASEAN Vision 2025 and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Both sides agreed that there is a convergence of interests and opportunities for collaboration, and hoped to enhance broader and deeper cooperation. Dr. Yudhoyono also encouraged ASEAN to continue to be in the driving seat in addressing global issues, and that the collaboration between ASEAN and the GGGI can be a showcasefor other potential partners to follow suit.