Speech by Minister Gan Kim Yong at the Occasion of Neste Expansion Opening Ceremony

Speech by Minister Gan Kim Yong at the Occasion of Neste Expansion Opening Ceremony

His Excellency, Mr Antti Vänskä, Ambassador of Finland to Singapore


Mr Matti Lehmus, President and CEO of Neste


Distinguished guests


Ladies and gentlemen


1. I am pleased to join you this morning  at the ceremony to mark the expansion of Neste’s refinery in Singapore.


2. Neste has been Singapore’s key partner in our journey towards a greener Energy & Chemicals sector.


a. You first opened this refinery in 2010, at a time when climate change was not quite a top priority of many governments or peers in your field.


b. But you set yourself apart with a portfolio of exclusively renewable products such as biofuel produced from waste and recycled feedstock for plastics production.


3. Since then, climate change has come into sharp focus.


a. As PM Lee Hsien Loong has said, this is the existential challenge of our times.


b. For a small island state like Singapore, we feel the challenge especially acutely.


c. We are determined to do our part to address this global challenge, and ensure that future generations inherit a more liveable planet.


4. That is why we have outlined a Whole of Nation response to dealing with this challenge, in the Singapore Green Plan


a. As the world shifts away from traditionally carbon-intensive industries, we are positioning ourselves to be an early mover in developing opportunities for green growth.


b. One key component of the Green Plan is the Sustainable Jurong Island strategy, which outlines our plans to rejuvenate the island into a green Energy & Chemicals Park that makes sustainable products for the rest of the world.


5.          Singapore has a large Energy & Chemicals sector, which is a significant contributor of our carbon emissions.


a. To meet our climate targets, the E&C sector must make serious efforts to decarbonise to reduce its emissions.


b. I am glad to see that the global push towards decarbonisation is creating greater impetus for the E&C sector to move towards low-carbon solutions for the future.


6. Companies like Neste are well positioned to seize the opportunities in this transition.


a. We have benefitted immensely from the cutting-edge innovation and growth opportunities that Neste has brought to Singapore. For example, the recent opening of Neste’s APAC Innovation Centre in February this year unlocks new possibilities for the renewables ecosystem.


b. The expansion of your refinery marks another major milestone in your partnership journey with Singapore.


c. More than S$2 billion has been invested in this state-of-the-art expansion project, reflecting your confidence in this business and in Singapore.


d. This facility will be responsible for close to a third of your global renewable production capacity.


e. It will serve customers not just in the immediate region, but also farther away in Europe and North America.


f. And it will create many new good jobs in high value-added manufacturing, research and engineering.


7. Neste, as the largest sustainable aviation fuel producer in the world, has also become an important player in Singapore’s transition towards green aviation.


a. In March this year, we announced our plans to establish a $50 million Aviation Sustainability Programme to foster innovative solutions for a more sustainable air hub.


b. We will also be publishing the Sustainable Air Hub Blueprint, which will provide a roadmap towards the decarbonisation of air travel.


c. A key aspect of this is to scale up on our production of sustainable aviation fuel which is touted to contribute as much as 65 percent of emissions reduction needed to reach net-zero for the sector by 2050.[1] It will be the needle-mover for low-carbon travel.


d. I am happy to note that with Neste’s expansion, Singapore’s sustainable aviation fuel production capacity will increase by up to 1 million tonnes per year, making Singapore the largest producer in the world.


e. This also complements our broader sustainable aviation fuel strategy and goes a long way in making travel more sustainable for all.




8. Let me conclude by reiterating Singapore’s commitment to partnering with industry to keep our Energy & Chemicals sector competitive and position the industry for the future.


a. We want to work with you and reaffirm our joint commitment to sustainable progress and prosperity.


b. I am confident that many will follow Neste’s path in embracing renewable and circular solutions.


c. Over time, we can grow an ecosystem that makes Singapore not only red dot but a shining green dot in the region.


9. Congratulations again to the Neste team on your remarkable growth over the past decade in Singapore, and on the expansion of this refinery.


a. I look forward to celebrating many more milestones as we journey together forward.


10. Thank you.


[1] Source: International Air Transport Association

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