MINISTER DESMOND LEE UNDERSCORES SINGAPORE’S PRIORITIES AT THE 19TH ASEAN SOCIO-CULTURAL COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETING
1 Minister for Social and Family Development Mr Desmond Lee chaired the 19th Meeting of the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC) Council on 21 March 2018 in Singapore. This is the first ASCC Council Meeting hosted and chaired by Singapore since the ASEAN Charter came into force in December 2008. The ASCC is one of three ASEAN Community Councils – the other two being the ASEAN Political-Security Community Council chaired by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and ASEAN Economic Community Council chaired by the Minister for Trade and Industry.
2 Attended by 10 ASCC Council Ministers, the new ASEAN Secretary-General Dato Lim Jock Hoi, senior officials and delegates, the Council Meeting discussed and endorsed ASEAN’s agenda related to environment, education, information, culture, health, youth,
women, children, labour, sports, social welfare, rural development, poverty eradication, and civil service training.
3 Minister Lee shared Singapore’s priority areas with the ASCC Council, which are aligned with Singapore’s 2018 ASEAN Chairmanship themes of resilience and innovation. These priority areas are related to youth, environment, information and the ASEAN smart city network.
4 Prior to the ASCC Council meeting, Singapore chaired the inaugural ASCC Council Ministerial Retreat in Swissôtel the Stamford. The Retreat saw strategic exchanges on inculcating a culture of prevention in ASEAN, following the adoption of the ASEAN Declaration on the Culture of Prevention for a Peaceful, Inclusive, Resilient, Healthy and Harmonious Society by ASEAN Leaders at the 31st Summit on 17 November 2017. Inculcating the right values in our societies coupled with social investment in preventive measures are useful approaches to mitigate risks in the long run.