"SCIC is playing its role in managing the plastic waste by staying in close consultations with NEA on initiatives such as the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) and Mandatory Packaging Framework (MPR) to develop suitable regulations that can be adopted by the industry."

Terence Koh

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SCIC (SINGAPORE CHEMICAL INDUSTRY COUNCIL)

April 20, 2022

What are some priority initiatives undertaken by SCIC?

Since the introduction of the carbon tax in 2019, SCIC has been proactively engaging the relevant statutory agencies (MTI, EDB and NEA) in the review process to ensure appropriate policies are laid out to uphold the competitiveness of the in the journey towards a lower carbon future.

Plastic waste management has been one of the most pressing issues globally. As such, SCIC is playing its role in managing the plastic waste by staying in close consultations with NEA on initiatives such as the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) and Mandatory Packaging Framework (MPR) to develop suitable regulations. In addition, SCIC has also been collaborating with the National Environment Agency (NEA) and the Public Hygiene Council (PHC) on drives such as the “Clear Shores, Clean Waters” beach clean-up campaign and sustainability conference, both of which are annual events looking to raise greater awareness on plastic waste management and recycling. SCIC is also a co-founder of the Plastic Recycling Association of Singapore (PRAS), which provides a platform for joint efforts of recycling initiatives in Singapore.

SCIC and its member companies are involved in various activities and discussions with the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), an organization that has rallied over 90 member companies and works with players across the globe in the fight against plastic waste. SCIC has also been the national administrator of Operation Clean Sweep (OCS), a program designed to achieve zero plastic pellet, flake and powder loss in operations across the plastic value chain.

SCIC provided financial contribution to Dow’s “Permanent Waste Collection Eco-System,” through which used shoes in Singapore are collected in Orange Bins and recycled to produce sports infrastructure.

The Standards Development Organisation (SDO), a sub-group in SCIC, offered its share of support to the chemical sector by taking on the management of the Environment and Resources Standards Committee (ERSC) in 2019. ERSC upholds the development and adoption of standards for climate change mitigation, circular economy, water management, sustainable energy, sustainable finance and clean technologies.

How is the industry performing two years since the start of the pandemic?

Many industries have faced unanticipated changes due to the pandemic and the chemical industry is no exception. On one end, Covid-19 reduced demand for certain products, which ultimately caused an impact on the respective manufacturers. However, the increase in demand for essential materials such as medications, protective equipment, packaging boxes for food and items purchased via online platforms also allowed many chemical companies to successfully sustain themselves during this crisis. As the nation eases the safety regulations this year, chemical companies are commencing their offline meetings and events, increasing their overall exposure.

How do you note the impact of the pandemic in pushing the digital transformation agenda of chemical companies?

The pandemic has called for a transformation in the way the industry operates, travel restrictions and remote working conditions creating a greater dependency on digital applications and the internet. This change accelerates the chemical sector’s transition to Industry 4.0, digitalization and automation. Besides remote working, remote learning has also become more prevalent within chemical companies that leverage digital platforms to upskill their workers. The two years of pandemic have enhanced the industry’s digital and innovative arsenal, creating new and better  marketing and communication channels.

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