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‘Integration of Vision 2035, UN’s sustainable goals is key’

Brunei Darussalam, by 2035, aspires to be a nation widely recognised for its educated, highly-skilled, and accomplished people; high quality of life; and dynamic and sustain-able economy.  

The Sultanate has also taken a strategic step forward to support the global ambition in implementing the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) having assumed the role of the Special National Coordination Committee on SDGs since 2020, to further strengthen the coordination efforts in catalysing the integration of the 2030 agendas with Brunei Vision 2035. 

Deputy Director of the Office for the Wawasan Brunei 2035 at the PMO Pengiran Khairil Bariah binti Pengiran Haji Mohd Ali said this at the launch of the Total Energies Sustainab’all ESG Start programme at The Empire Brunei yesterday.

She said, “The challenges we face today in supporting the vision and the goals span across various sectors, including environment, social and governance.”

Pengiran Khairil Bariah also said, “We cannot turn a blind eye on these challenges; instead, we must confront them head-on with determination and turn them into opportunities for transformation, innovation and progress.”

“The government and private sector, alongside with communities are called to play their parts to succeed in addressing those challenges,” she added.

Deputy Director of the Officer for Wawasan Brunei 2035 at the Prime Minister’s Office Pengiran Khairil Bariah binti Pengiran Haji Mohd Ali speaks at the event. PHOTO: LYNA MOHAMAD

TotalEnergies EP Brunei’s effort in working together with the United Nations Global Compact Network Malaysia and Brunei (UNGCMYB) aims to embark their supply chain and contractors in a more sustainable journey, striving to progress on the three pillars of sustainability – environment, social and governance (ESG).  

She noted that the programme is an opportunity to demonstrate the effort as a community and the need to have what it takes to address the important issues surrounding environment, social and governance in working towards achieving all 17 goals of the SDG. 

“Through the ESG Start programme, the message will be shared to all supply chains, contractors, partners and beyond and by kickstarting the initiative, tremendous progress can be made over the coming decade, especially for the growth and advancement of the country’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which will in turn promote Brunei globally,” said Pengiran Khairil Bariah.

The deputy director also called for the adoption of the principles as guiding lights on the journey towards ESG excellence and to commit to minimising environmental footprint by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, conserving natural resources and transitioning to renewable energy sources as environmental responsibility. “We must invest in sustainable technologies, embrace circular economy principles and adopt eco-friendly practices throughout our operations and supply chains,” she said.

On social equity, Pengiran Khairil Bariah emphasised on the need to strive to create workplaces that are inclusive, diverse and equitable, the need to uphold ethical business practices, promote fair labour principles and foster a culture of respect, dignity and collaboration and engage with communities, listen to their needs, and invest in initiatives that promote education, health and economic empowerment for all.  

She added, “We must uphold the highest standards of corporate governance, accountability and transparency. Sharing relevant ESG information and best practices to investors, regulators and the public is essential, allowing for informed decision-making and cons-tructive dialogue.”

She also shared the Brunei Government’s commitment to aligning and harmonising Brunei Vision 2035 and the SDGs to ensure that the nation’s efforts to advance both the national development and sustainable development agenda go hand-in-hand. “Brunei Vision 2035 operationalises efforts through three blueprints – manpower blueprint, social blueprint, and economic blueprint. These blueprints outline the aspirations Brunei Darussalam is aiming for and serve as a guidance for ministries and relevant agencies in developing current and future policies and projects in transforming the Sultanate into a more prosperous, inclusive and sustainable nation.”

“Sustainable practices,” she added, “are increasingly recognised as the core strategic priority for businesses globally for long-term viability and growth, which not only gaining access to local and foreign markets but also a useful economic model for the current and future business landscape.” 

The deputy director continued, “Companies that embrace ESG principles will not only mitigate risks and enhance their reputation – they will also unlock new opportunities for innovation, growth and impact and to redefine the role of business in society.

“Collective effort, innovation and commitment from all sectors of society is needed towards achieving these goals will require collective effort. And while the responsibility to engineer a coordinated response rests primarily on national governments, everyone has a role to play to drive positive change and build a more sustainable and equitable world for current and future generations.” – Lyna Mohamad

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