Fiji’s Minister of Infrastructure, Transport, Disaster Management and Meteorological Services, Honorable Jone Usamate attended the opening session of the 12th annual Singapore International Energy Week in Singapore last Tuesday, 29 October.

The Singapore International Energy Week or SIEW, is an annual conference that provides a platform for professionals, policymakers and commentators in the energy sector, to collaborate and share best practices and solutions within the global energy space. It is a leading platform in Asia for energy stakeholders to discuss energy issues that impact the region. Annually SIEW attracts over 13,000 delegates from more than 70 countries including energy ministers, industry captains and heads of international organizations.

First held in 2008, SIEW was organized by the Singapore Energy Market Authority (EMA), a statutory board under the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Key objectives of the event included ensuring a reliable and secure energy supply; promoting effective competition in the energy market; and developing a dynamic energy sector in Singapore. Over the years, SIEW participants have grown significantly to include an audience from other Asian countries, commercial-energy-industries and international organizations involved in the global energy sector.

The SIEW 2019 theme, “Accelerating Energy Transformation” called on global energy stakeholders to accelerate efforts towards a more sustainable energy future. With energy consumption expected to double by 2040, meeting rising demands with secure, low carbon path of affordable and clean energy was a priority throughout the week-long event.

Minister Usamate said that the theme was appropriate given the current rise in demands on electrification, the significant shift towards renewable energy and, simultaneously, the need to care for the environment.

“The current developments and the increase in demand for more electricity supply requires a whole scale transformation in current practices to effectively manage carbon footprints and volume of green-house emissions,” said Usamate.

Usamate further stated that renewable energy would be an appropriate focus for Fiji and that there was an urgent need to increasing electricity production from solar and hydropower sources, and the need to reduce energy usage in buildings by smart planning.

Notable world-renowned institutions and government leaders who are leading figures in and are heavily dependent on the energy sector participated and contributed in various panel of discussions throughout the week long energy event.

Given Fiji’s domestic developments, population growth, infrastructure projects and aspirations as outlined in the National Development Plan, the SIEW annual event arguably presents an opportunity for learning and collaboration that would benefit Fiji’s growth domestically and strengthen its leadership role, regionally.

SIEW 2019 included related forums namely Singapore-IEA Forum, Asia Clean Energy Summit, Asian Downstream Summit, Gas Asia Summit and SIEW Thinktank Roundtable. Participants included government ministers from Malaysia, Singapore, Myanmar, United Arab Emirates with international organisations including the World Bank, World Nuclear Association, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia Pacific, and ASEAN, to name a few.