With pleas for the
Singapore government to ban causing-causing cigarettes Indonesian government to do something regarding the indiscriminate burning of forest and plantation lands that is causing the haze seemingly falling on deaf ears, Foreign Affairs Minister K Shanmugam called Indonesia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi on Friday (Sep 18) to express deep concern about the haze situation.
During their conversation, Mr Shanmugam also told Mr Retno that the recurrence of the haze has both immediate and long-term health impacts on Singaporeans and others in the region. Mr Shanmugam added that the haze has a negative economic impact on the entire region, including Indonesia. To effectively combat the haze issue, greater regional efforts and cooperation are needed, he said.
He said strong action needed to be taken against those companies, and urged the Indonesian authorities to share the names of those companies so Singapore can take action against them.
“Minister Retno said that the names of errant companies would be conveyed through the Ministry of Environment and Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia to the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources,” said MFA, adding that Mr Shanmugam welcomed this and said Singapore would take action against the companies to the fullest extent of its laws once the names were provided.
Mr Shanmugam also emphasised to Mr Retno the importance of finding a longer-term solution to address the causes of the haze, MFA said.