The agreement will facilitate increased dialogue and partnerships between leading ecolabelling schemes in Singapore and Australia, fostering best global practices and standards.

The agreement will facilitate increased dialogue and partnerships between leading ecolabelling schemes in Singapore and Australia, fostering best global practices and standards. The aim is to generate better environmental, social and economic outcomes for businesses and citizens of both countries.

Singapore and Sydney, 18 October 2022 – Singapore Environment Council (SEC) and GECA today entered a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to strengthen cooperation between the two countries in the areas of environmental protection and promotion of ecolabel certification.

The agreement, signed by SEC Executive Director  and GECA CEO Michelle Thomas, was facilitated by the Governments of Australia and Singapore under the auspices of the Singapore-Australia Green Economy Agreement (GEA). The GEA supports green growth and jobs and decarbonisation and aims to strengthen international governance on trade and environmental sustainability. Both countries recognise that trusted ecolabelling schemes instil confidence and help drive demand for low-carbon, sustainable, and resource efficient goods and services.

Lifecycle ecolabels follow ISO 14024 principles, are third-party verified and globally recognised as the most robust and credible form of environmental labelling by the United Nations. GECA and SEC are members of the Global Ecolabelling Network (GEN), the leading network of the world’s most credible and robust lifecycle ecolabels. By mutually recognising each country’s ecolabelling schemes, the MOU will contribute to expanding the market for greener products and services to meet the growing demand for genuinely eco-friendly products. The collaboration builds on the many synergies between Singapore and Australia to accelerate both countries’ transition towards sustainable economic growth and decarbonisation.

The MOU will provide a framework for both organisations to forge deeper collaboration in addressing environmental issues at regional and global levels, including advocating for ecolabel certification and sustainable consumption. GECA and SEC, with their respective governments’ support, will combine resources to educate and build the capacity of businesses to address critical impacts across the entire length of their supply chains. Together, this will catalyse the adoption of internationally recognised best practice models in Singapore and Australia to reduce the impacts of products and services on people and planet.

“By encouraging the inclusion of our MOU into the GEA, Australia and Singapore are taking a crucial step toward embracing a holistic view of green trade to include social and health issues. This step could catalyse action across various impact areas, including climate change, modern slavery, chemicals of concern, biodiversity conservation, and reduction of waste to landfill,” said Michelle Thomas, GECA CEO.

Mutual recognition for products and services certified under the GECA ecolabel and the Singapore Green Labelling Scheme (SGLS) will allow Australian companies to expand into a significant international market. It can also benefit Australian architects specifying for green building projects in Singapore.

“This collaboration with GECA opens many opportunities in enabling both countries to move closer towards balancing resource sustainability and economic growth. On a national scale, SEC believes this is a significant step towards a key tenet of the Singapore Green Plan 2030 – Green Economy. The increased economic competitiveness due to the expansion of the market for sustainable products and services will spur businesses to conduct R&D. This will allow for more sustainable solutions and innovation, helping to propel Singapore forward as the region’s Green Finance Hub,” said Ms Teo.

“We look forward to introducing more sustainable businesses and green products across Singapore and Australia – inspiring more stakeholders to play their part in progressing an economy in a sustainable manner.”

The MOU also demonstrates GECA and SEC’s commitment to researching crucial sustainability drivers, impacts and solutions. This research aims to generate better environmental, social and economic outcomes, including harmonising and streamlining approaches to carbon reduction, circular economy, healthy materials, and transparency.

Ms Thomas added: “There has never been a better time to work collaboratively in driving sustainable manufacturing and trade that will significantly benefit the Australian and Singaporean economies, people and environment.”

This article was published by GECA on its LinkedIn page.

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