Haze meeting: Govts agree to share concession maps [News]
By Woo Sian Boon, TODAY, 18 Jul 2013.
Kuala Lumpur — Despite Indonesia committing to ratify the regional pact on transboundary haze pollution by early next year, at the latest, and agreeing to share digitised concession maps with other governments, Singapore’s Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Vivian Balakrishnan left yesterday’s regional meeting on the haze problem “disappointed (but) not surprised”, in his own words.
The 15th Meeting of the Sub-Regional Ministerial Steering Committee (MSC) on Transboundary Haze was held in Kuala Lumpur. Last week, Dr Balakrishnan spelt out in Parliament four outcomes that Singapore was seeking at the meeting.
He told the Singapore media after the meeting yesterday that he had to push hard — to the extent of persuading other leaders during a tea break — to get the countries to agree to share the concession maps at government-to-government level, subject to the approval of ASEAN leaders at a summit in October.
This was a compromise from what the Republic had wanted, which was for the detailed maps to be made available to the public.
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