| Ishan Ibrahim |
THE 12th Second Echelon Brunei-Singapore Civil Service Exchange Programme (CSEP) commenced on Monday at the Rizqun International Hotel.
Jointly organised by the Civil Service College (CSC) of Singapore and Brunei Darussalam’s Civil Service Institute (IPA), this bilateral programme held annually is aimed at forging closer ties between Singaporean and Bruneian civil servants across various ministries and agencies.
Representing the Sultanate in the four-day event is Haji Khairuddin bin Haji Abd Hamid, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources, in his capacity as the head of Brunei’s delegation and Tan Meng Dui, Deputy Secretary at the Ministry of National Development of Singapore.
Also in attendance were senior and junior officials from both nations.
As the host this year, the sessions in Brunei include classroom-based discussions and learning journeys that should be beneficial in terms of experience for the participants.
The theme for this year’s CSEP is ‘Achieving Food Security via Stakeholders Partnership’ and the key objectives include the provision of networking opportunities among senior public sector officials from both countries, to provide a platform for participants to exchange ideas on the latest challenges faced by civil services, to enable participants to gain insights into the latest social management challenges associated with economic growth, to share and learn the policies on creating a balanced approach to industrialisation and primary production – with the dual objectives of achieving economic growth and food security – and to involve the private sector in developing mechanisms, policies and sustainability.
The idea for the 2nd CSEP was first mooted in March 2002 by former Permanent Secretary (Prime Minister’s Office, Singapore) Eddie Teo and former Secretary at the Prime Minister’s Office, Brunei, Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Laila Diraja Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Hazair bin Haji Abdullah.
The annual programme hopes to provide an opportunity for younger civil servants to learn from each other and to establish closer ties.
It underscores the strong ties between Brunei and Singapore and serves as an important platform for senior civil servants to network and share views on issues of mutual interest.
Since its inauguration in 2002, both countries have taken turns hosting the programme.
The CSC of Singapore is a statutory board under the Public Service Division of the Prime Minister’s Office. Its mission is to develop human resources for a first class public service experience.
CSC brings together public service officers from diverse backgrounds and provides them opportunities to plug into a service-wide network to exchange views, build shared ethos and perspectives, creating a rich environment for dialogue and knowledge sharing.
CSC programmes are practitioner-focused. With access to public sector thought leadership and line management, much of the training is facilitated by highly experienced practitioners who speak with authority and offer first-hand knowledge and experience.
Through its programmes and services, CSC aims to build commitment and strategic capacity in governance, leadership, public administration and management for a networked government in the Singapore Public Service.
It stated its vision as “The Heart of Learning Excellence and Development for the Singapore Public Service.”
The IPA is the training arm of the Public Service Department of Brunei. It began as a training unit as part of the Establishment Office (now known as Public Service Department) in January 1977.
In May 1993, the training unit was reorganised and given a new designation and status, as the Civil Service Institute. In 1995, it offered training programmes focused on management and administration.
Since 1999, the institute has been operating under the jurisdiction of the Prime Minister’s Office and the scope of its services and activities has been widened to include Information and Communication Technology training and the needs of the private sector.