Lunch hosted by Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Vivian Balakrishnan for delegates of the 9th FOSS Fellowship Programme, 13 January 2020. Photo credit: Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Singapore is hosting a study visit by 11 Permanent Representatives to the United Nations from 13 to 17 January 2020 under the 9th Forum of Small States (FOSS) Fellowship Programme.

The FOSS, founded by Singapore in 1992, is an informal platform at the United Nations that brings together states with populations under ten million to discuss issues of common interest.  The FOSS currently has 108 member states.  The objective of the FOSS Fellowship Programme, launched in 2015, is to foster closer cooperation among FOSS members through the exchange of views and experiences on issues faced by small states in their development journey.  Under the Fellowship Programme, the Permanent Representatives have the opportunity to engage Singapore’s leaders and policy makers in fields related to sustainable development.  The 9th FOSS Fellowship Programme is attended by the Permanent Representatives of El Salvador, Eswatini, Gabon, Grenada, Kiribati, Malawi, Maldives, Micronesia, Samoa, Suriname and Uganda.

The Permanent Representatives were hosted to lunch by Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Vivian Balakrishnan earlier today.  They discussed Singapore’s experiences in sustainable development and the importance of multilateralism to small states.

Later in the week, the Permanent Representatives will also meet Minister for Education Mr Ong Ye Kung, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Education and Finance Ms Indranee Rajah, Senior Minister of State for Health and the Environment and Water Resources Dr Amy Khor, and be hosted to lunch by Senior Minister of State for Health and Transport Dr Lam Pin Min.  The Fellowship Programme includes briefings and site visits related to Singapore’s approach towards sustainable development in areas such as urban planning, water management, port management, civil aviation, education, governance, as well as infrastructure development and financing.