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Opening Address by Deputy Permanent Secretary on The 9th BIMP EAGA TIICTD Cluster Meeting




Yang Mulia Pengiran Haji Mohd Zain bin Pengiran Haji Abd Razak, Chairman of the BIMP-EAGA TIICTD Cluster Group,

Heads of Delegation from Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines,

 Distinguished delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,

ﻪﺘﺎﻜﺭﺒﻭ ﷲﺍ ﺔﻤﺤﺮﻮ ﻢﻜﻴﻟﻋ ﻡﻼﺴﻟﺍ

A very Good Afternoon to you all.

1. First of all, let me on behalf of the Government of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, welcome all delegates to the 9th BIMP-EAGA Transport, Infrastructure and ICT Development (TIICTD) Cluster Meeting.

2. With the 9th Cluster Meeting convening today, the main objective for the formation of this group is well-strengthened.  As the platform for government officials of the BIMP-¬EAGA transport, ICT and infrastructural development sectors, the group has been able to promote sharing of experiences in transport management, as well as in resolving transport infrastructure facilities, ICT connectivity and logistical services development in the East ASEAN Growth Area or EAGA.

Ladies and gentlemen,

3. We have seen an increasing and encouraging interest by the private sector in joining efforts with the governments of BIMP EAGA to identify problems and create opportunities for the long-term development of the EAGA region.  Public-Private Sector Partnership through the BIMP-EAGA Business Council (BEBC), is a significant vehicle in helping towards achieving our strategic goals for the BIMP EAGA.  Allow me to take this opportunity to acknowledge the contributions made by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) in supporting the BIMP-EAGA processes and initiatives.

4. The transportation sector is one of the key enablers, as well as key beneficiaries in realizing the BIMP-EAGA goals to increase trade and investment and tourism within the sub-region.  It consists of the land, air and maritime transportation's physical infrastructure, transportation connectivity and multi-model transportation systems.  Their availability and quality will influence how and where particular businesses will be located or developed.  This in turn, will lead to potential economic spin-offs and enhanced quality of life for the people in BIMP-EAGA.

5. Let me take this opportunity to share with you, a recent development concerning the transportation sector in Brunei Darussalam.  According to recent statistics, Brunei Darussalam has about 200,000 registered vehicles.  An estimated average of 15,000 new vehicles are registered every year.  For a country with about 60,000 households, this will translate to about 3 cars per household.  Looking at these figures, we realize that there is a need for a holistic approach towards our national land transport system.  

6. This is where we are going.  On 5th June 2012, a big public policy exercise  commenced with the signing of the Review and Formulation of Roadmap and Draft Masterplan for a Sustainable Land Transportation System.  This initiative will address key issues to achieve an integrated, efficient and sustainable land transport service network.  Among the issues are limited public transport network, high dependence on private vehicles, increasing traffic congestion, road safety and better integration between transportation and land use planning.  Multi-modal and cross border transport connectivity will also be addressed.  This public policy exercise involves key stakeholders, namely the Centre of Strategic and Policy Studies (CSPS), the Ministry of Communications, the Ministry of Development and other relevant stakeholders.  Among the key deliverables of this 12-month project will be a multi-modal land transportation strategy (White Paper) and a detailed implementation plan for Brunei Darussalam, in line with Brunei Darussalam’s Vision 2035.

Ladies and gentlemen,

7. I believe the same urgency is also shared in the BIMP EAGA region. In realizing its importance, during the 8th BIMP-EAGA Summit in April 2012, our leaders commended the transport sector for moving the connectivity agenda forward and for the achievements in improving transport and logistics in the sub-region.  The Summit also noted with encouragement the commencement of the inaugural flight of Kalstar, MASwings and Mid Sea Express to serve BIMP-EAGA routes.  Our leaders also supported the initiative to identify additional points outside of BIMP-EAGA as part of expanding co-terminalization operations to sustain air services on existing routes.  New entrants to sub-regional air connections are also encouraged.

8. We must build upon this momentum created by our leaders.  We should play our part in helping to facilitate and effectively realize the objectives set out by our leaders in promoting trade, commerce, tourism and people exchanges within the sub¬-region. There must also be emphasis on the coordination of multi-sectoral efforts in sub-regional transport development.  This could stimulate trade, tourism and investment flows narrowing the development gaps in the sub-region.  Hence, we must focus on the enhancement of the transport sectors with other BIMP-EAGA clusters such as Tourism to ensure that projects and action plans are convergent and supportive of each other. This, I believe, is in line with the four main pillars of BIMP-EAGA: Connectivity, Food Basket, Tourism and Environment.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

9. Looking to the future, there is no doubt that much remains to be done.  Despite the challenges, I can see that BIMP-EAGA has managed to achieve what others take years to agree upon.  To continue this progress, efforts and a timely implementation plan must be further co-ordinated in order to realize our goals and objectives.

10. I am confident that with your continued commitment and in the spirit of cooperation of BIMP-EAGA, this meeting will bring about some fruitful deliberations.  On this note, I wish you all the best and have a very pleasant stay in Brunei Darussalam.

With the kalimah `Bismillah Hirrahman Nirrahim' I declare the 9th BIMP-EAGA Transport, Infrastructure and ICT Development Cluster open.

Thank you, Terima Kasih and Maraming Salamat.

Created at 05/12/2015 11:26 AM by Siti Hawa binti Aboo Samah
Last modified at 05/12/2015 11:26 AM by Siti Hawa binti Aboo Samah