Speaking in Parliament at the Committee of Supply 2018, Minister-In-Charge of the Smart Nation Initiative Dr Vivian Balakrishnan provided updates on Singapore’s five Smart Nation Strategic National Projects.
The five projects are on track to deliver the interim outcomes that will bring benefits to citizens and businesses. In addition to these priority projects, the Government is also developing a set of strategies and plans to transform itself to become more digital and data-driven.
Anchoring this transformation will be new efforts to develop the public service’s technical skills and capabilities, and rethink the way digital infrastructure is designed.
Minister-in-Charge of GovTech, Senior Minister of State Dr Janil Puthucheary, shared that the Government will release a Digital Government Blueprint in the middle of 2018, which will spell out the exact outcomes of the digital transformation.
National Digital Identity (NID)
The NID system will provide users with a single digital identity to transact with both the Government and private sector in am more secure and seamless fashion. (Our detailed coverage of the announced updates to the NDI is here.)
As part of the NID, a new SingPass Mobile App will be launched in the second half of 2018. The app will enable authentication through a secure soft token stored on the phone, and a user-determined six-digit passcode or fingerprint, which will provide enhanced security compared to using SMS one-time passwords.
Users would not need to key in their passwords every time they log in to a digital service. Moreover, Singaporeans who are overseas will be able to transact with Government services, as a SMS notification is not needed, as in the current 2-factor authentication.
MyInfo, the Government’s Tell Us Once service,currently connects 70 government services and 30 banking services, eliminating repetitive form-filling and document verification, and enhances accuracy. By the end of this year, 160 government-to-citizen (G2C) digital services, which make up almost all G2C services, will be linked to MyInfo.
The MyInfo Developer & Partner Portal, launched late last year, will allow private companies to integrate their digital services and MyInfo. More than 150 businesses from various industries have expressed interest to do so since the portal’s launch.
Public agencies will start using PayNow, a service launched during 2017, which links mobile numbers to bank accounts (Singapore National Registration Identity Card/ Foreign Identification Number can also be used). PayNow enables users to pay and receive money using their mobile banking app, without any need to know bank names or account numbers.
In March 2018, CPF (Central Provident Fund) will allow eligible CPF members over 55 years old to receive their lump sum withdrawal through PayNow. Funds will be able to be transferred within the same day, instead of the current turnaround time of 5 working days.
The Ministry of Education is going to pilot the use of PayNow to disburse Edusave Award monies to ITE and polytechnic students. This will be faster and more convenient than having to bank a cheque.
PayNow Corporate will be launched this year. Businesses will be able to link their bank accounts to their Unique Entity Numbers (UENs) and use PayNow to pay other businesses. Consumers can also use PayNow Corporate to pay merchants for their purchases.
The adoption of the National QR code standard, SGQR will be promoted. The SGQR was developed by an industry taskforce co-led by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA). It includes protocols customised for Singapore, building on the QR specifications of EMVCo, a consortium of international payment schemes. Besides consumer convenience, it will also support cheaper and infrastructure-light payments systems, which will benefit smaller businesses.
At the same time, in an important step to ehance interoperability of e-payment systems, two local payment giants EZ-Link and NETS are working together to enable EZ-Link card acceptance at NETS terminals in hawker centres.
Smart Nation Sensor Platform
Dr Balakrishnan revealed that trials for different aspects of the Smart Nation Sensor Platform (SNSP) are ongoing. A better and more systematic use of sensors and other devices will help build and run a more liveable and sustainable city. This includes a more responsive transport network, better public security and improve urban planning.
Moments of Life
The Moments of Life (MOL) initiative aims to reduce the need for citizens to transact separately with multiple government agencies by bundling relevant government services across different agencies to the citizens at key moments of their lives.
The MOL (Families) app will be launched in June 2018 to address the needs of parents with newborns or young children. In the pilot phase, the MOL (Families) app will feature the applicable services by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA), the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA), and the Health Promotion Board (HPB). This will allow parents to register their child’s birth online, apply for Baby Bonus, search and register interest for preschools, and view medical appointments and immunisation records.
Rethinking the design of digital infrastructure
The Government Technology Agency of Singapore (GovTech) is developing a centrally-managed platform, called the Singapore Government Technology Stack (SGTS), for public sector agencies to build their digital applications.
The SGTS will make available common digital services and infrastructure to all Government agencies. This reduces the time and effort needed to introduce new digital services, as well as enhance and maintain existing ones. Agencies can focus on designing solutions that best meet the needs of those they serve and develop high quality applications providing a consistent experience to citizens. GovTech is making SGTS available for the whole public sector progressively from 2018
Smart Nation Scholarship
The Smart Nation Scholarship aims to attract and groom a pool of deep technological talent and leaders for GovTech, Cyber Security Agency (CSA) and IMDA to help Government better serve citizens, defend systems from evolving cyber threats, and help Singapore companies benefit from the opportunities of the digital economy.
The scholarship is open to Singaporean students who have completed their junior college or polytechnic studies, and offers the opportunity to pursue a full-time ICT-related degree in either a local or overseas university. Candidates who are currently studying in a non-ICT related undergraduate course may also be considered if they are interested in taking up a double degree in ICT. “Mid-term Scholarships” will also be awarded to students in the middle of their degree programme at any of the local/overseas universities.
Candidates will be assessed based on a holistic set of eligibility criteria. In addition to academic performance, other aspects such as co-curricular activities and involvement in ICT events and competitions, among others, will also be taken in consideration.
Upon returning from their studies, scholarship holders will gain direct admission onto their respective parent agency’s talent programmes, where they will undergo rigorous and in-depth technical training to fast track their career development and be groomed into future technology leaders in the public service. They will be required to fulfil a service commitment with their parent agency (6 years for overseas studies and 4 years for local studies).
The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in partnership with the Department of Agriculture has been helping Western Visayas farmers, fisherfolk and agribusinesses in improving the packaging of their products.
The partnership aims to enhance the market competitiveness of agriculture and fishery products in Western Visayas region.
Department of Agriculture (DA-6) had provided Department of Science and Technology (DOST-6) with a PHP7.5 million funding support last month so it could provide assistance to at least 100 beneficiaries.
The partnership helps in the technical and aesthetic parts, the Department of Agriculture is responsible to identify beneficiaries.
The initiative works on the competitiveness of the businesses specifically in aesthetics, longer shelf life, better protection of the products, keeping the buyers informed of nutritional label and to better compete with imported products.
The training being provided is primarily aimed at Department of Agriculture field workers. For the enterprises, it is more on packaging design, material selection, labeling, actual product packaging for test marketing.
The funding is also being used to develop a technical manual for agri-fishery product packaging and capacity building of agribusiness enterprises, as well as the Department of Agriculture and local government personnel assisting farmers and fisherfolk.
The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) will collaborate with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in Region 5 to help food processors in the region.
The three agencies signed a memorandum of agreement earlier this week for a collaborative project focused on facilitating the registration and compliance of food processing micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to the mandated food safety regulatory certifications and standards.
The DOST Region 5’s role in this collaborative project is to assist in capability development of DTI technical personnel through the conduct of training on Basic Food Hygiene and current Good Manufacturing Practices.
The DOST Region 5 will also provide analysis and testing, technical assistance on the evaluation of compliance to mandatory packaging and labeling requirements.
Dela Peña said that the DTI, for its part, will identify and evaluate target food processor beneficiaries, and will also determine products for testing, as well as the specific tests to be conducted.
The FDA, on the other hand, will conduct orientation to the beneficiaries regarding product registration and licensing. Dela Peña said the FDA would prioritize and provide a special lane for applicants endorsed by the DTI.
With regard to the food sector, the DOST has also partnered with the DTI and Department of Agriculture (DA) in Region 11, to address issues in the cacao value chain.
Among the challenges in the cacao value chain are the technology support, marketing, land tenure system, institutional capacity for technical support, access to crop inputs, he said.
DOST will align its programmes and projects, such as the Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Programme (SETUP), technology transfer training in cacao processing and food safety consultancy services, among other assisstance.
The DOST 11 already assisted two MSMEs in Davao del Norte who are into cacao processing through SETUP.
An enhanced version of the Department of Science and Technology’s SETUP Programme will be implemented before yearend.
SETUP is DOST’s programme that aims to encourage and assist micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in adopting technological innovations to improve their products and operations.
About 800 MSMEs can be accommodated in the SETUP programme in 2020, with a budget of around PHP 860 million (US$ 17.5 million). About PHP 900 million (US$ 18.4 million) is has been allocated for the SETUP programme in 2021.
DOST is transitioning to SETUP 4.0, to help MSMEs in digitalisation and automation part. They are enhancing the implementation of SETUP to align with the industry 4.0.
Industry 4.0 is defined as “the current trend of automation and data exchange in manufacturing technologies. It includes cyber-physical systems, the internet of things, cloud computing, and cognitive computing”.
Senator Win Gatchalian recently said that the government needs to be ready with its policies and infrastructure before electric vehicles (EVs) become more affordable and popular in the country.
The Senator, who chairs the Senate Committee on Energy, is pushing for the creation of sound policy and regulatory framework for the adoption of EVs and the sustainability of the EV ecosystem.
Citing the 2019 data of the Bloomberg New Energy Finance, it was forecast that the cost of EVs could reach parity with traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles by 2024 as batteries become much cheaper.
As such, the government must have the right policies, infrastructure, and incentives so it can roll out the EVs in a big way, as the country moves toward the promotion of sustainable transportation in a post-COVID-19 world.
According to the lawmaker, Senate Bill 1382 or the Electric Vehicles and Charging Station Act, which he authored and sponsored, supports the transition to new technologies, aims to generate jobs, and attract investments to grow globally competitive.
While the COVID-19 crisis shows that effective public transport is vital to keeping cities running and quarantine measures have put a strain on the country’s public transport system, over the long term, public transport is an investment that can create jobs, reduce carbon emissions, and innovate people’s access to their workplaces.
The bill is now up for interpellation in the Senate. Once the bill becomes a law and if implemented correctly, the Senator expresses confidence that the country’s dependence on oil will be greatly reduced and that the country will save PH₱ 297.92 billion (around US$ 6.7 billion) of annual oil importation.
The bill provides fiscal and non-fiscal incentives for the importation, utilisation, and manufacture of EVs. This includes a 9-year exemption from value-added tax, customs duties, and discounts on the Motor Vehicle User’s Charge as well as expedited registration procedures for EV users.
According to the 2018 Philippine Statistical Yearbook, the country imports 96.84% of crude oil. At least 74% of the country’s crude oil import comes from the Middle East, making the country more vulnerable to supply and pricing disruptions.
Senator Gatchalian is also sponsoring the measure to further promote and adopt EVs in the country, which he says will help reduce Philippine greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and foster greater energy independence. He pointed out that the transport sector is the second biggest GHG contributor in the country with 31.6%, citing the 2017 DOE data.
In July, the Department of Trade and Industry proposed a PH₱ 83 billion (US$ 1.6 billion) incentive package to support the local manufacturing of EVs.
According to a news report, support to the e-vehicle subsector would come in the form of production assistance and consumer subsidy.
The objective is to provide time-bound, targeted, performance-based perks and transparent fiscal and non-fiscal support in order to attract EV and EV parts manufacturing, particularly electronic parts and other strategic components, batteries, charging stations and the establishment of testing facilities in terms of the production support.
The Philippines is expected to have a stock of 36 million units of motor vehicles by 2030 and 6.6 million of these would be EVs. At least half of the projected inventory of EV will be locally-manufactured.
The government is targeting to manufacture 100% adoption rate for PUVs, trucks and three-wheelers, 50% for e-buses and two-wheelers, 23% for UVs other than PUVs and 3% for passenger cars.
The sales of plug-in hybrid EVs are still small in the Philippines, with only 54 manufacturers and importers, 19 charging stations, 11 parts manufacturers, and 18 dealers and traders. The industry employs 71,840 workers, both direct and indirect.
Indonesia has been looking to secure access to candidate vaccines with local companies seeking cooperation with producers as well as the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI).
For a longer-term, self-sufficient strategy, a national consortium under the Research and Technology Ministry is working on developing its own vaccine, helmed by the Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology. The vaccine will be named after Indonesia’s flag colors, Merah Putih, or red and white.
The Merah Putih vaccine was now entering the “critical” process that would “determine the success of the vaccine in the future”.
The development is testimony to Indonesian’s tech progress as well as their investment in technology in various fields, including healthcare, research and IT infrastructure.
Minister for Research and Technology/Chairman of National Agency for Research and Innovation, Bambang Brodjonegoro said they are currently building the organizational structure of his ministry to integrate the Research, Development, Assessment and Application (Litbangjirap).
This is to ensure the technological readiness from stage 1 to 9 to downstream the research outputs and tighten the academic researchers and industries relationships.
The minster felt a super tax deduction policy for R&D companies, both multinational and domestic, would be an incentive to invest more in Indonesia.
Various facilities of research, development, assessment and application in the Research Centre for Science and Technology (Puspiptek) have been in place for some time.
The Centre of Research, Development, Assessment and Application Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT) and the Nation Standardization Agency of Indonesia (BSN) are being developed continuously so they could be used by the industries, research institutions, universities and public.
Both facilities of BPPT and BSN are just two areas of the entire Puspiptek complex, in addition to the facilities managed by Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), National Nuclear Energy Agency (BATAN), and the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.
At the end of 2019, the Minister for Research and Technology/Chairman of National Agency for Research and Innovation, Bambang Brodjonegoro, officially launched the National Center for Stem Cells and Metabolites Production.
The institution, established in partnership with Medical School of University of Indonesia, will give stem cell treatments for various degenerative diseases with more affordable price for patients compared with similar treatments abroad.
In the meantime, Indonesian scientists are set to start the phase III clinical trials of a potential COVID-19 vaccine this coming week in six different locations in the West Java provincial capital of Bandung.
Padjajaran University (Unpad) Medical School professor Kusnandi Rusmil, the clinical trial research team leader, said the human trials would commence on Aug. 11
Food and Drug Supervisory Agency (BPOM) head Penny Kusumastuti Lukito said the agency had been working closely with the clinical trial research team to make sure the phase III trials could be carried out safely and in an ethically appropriate manner.
So far, about 800 volunteers have registered for the trials which is half the number of people that was being aimed for.
The team was looking for a total of 1,620 volunteers and volunteer registrations would be open until Aug. 31.
The trials are expected to finish in about 6 months at the earliest.
State-owned pharmaceutical holding company PT Bio Farma said the company was currently conducting a stability test on the vaccine in its laboratory facilities.
Bio Farma is planning to ramp up production capacity and be ready to produce 250 million doses of the vaccine per year by December.
The company also planned to invest loan funds of at least Rp 1.3 trillion (US$88 million) in the development of infrastructure and human resources in the research and production units.
The Australian government is investing approximately A$66.3 million in solar energy as well as other renewable sources of energy.
Not only will this reduce greenhouse gas emission, but it will also create jobs and support post-COVID economic recovery.
The government recently detailed a A$1 billion investment in 23 energy projects
These projects range from agritech, cleantech, transport, waste sectors, energy, and infrastructure.
Over A$187 million of government finance will support approximately 6,700 smaller-scale investments in clean energy projects across the agribusiness, property, and transport sectors.
Subsequently, A$187 million of the government fund will help support around 6700 smaller-scale investments in clean energy.
The Australian Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor said the government is taking a technology not taxes approach to reducing emissions.
Reducing emissions without imposing new costs on households, businesses or the economy is central to the government’s Technology Investment Roadmap.
This investment is crucial coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Australian government has also been able to leverage A$27.3 billion, in Australian businesses, from private investors, equating to A$2.30 in private sector finance for each A$1 from the CEFC.
The A$300 million Advancing Hydrogen Fund and A$1 billion Grid Reliability Fund are two examples of the government’s ongoing goal to accelerate new technologies.
This will solidify Australia’s place as a global leader in low emissions technology.
The Australian government is currently focused on supporting start-ups and projects that can deliver reliable energy at an affordable price while also investing in industries that can support the economy and create new job opportunities.
The Australian government will support their private investors through the Grid Reliability Fund and provide clean, safe energy through their Advancing Hydrogen Fund.
The CEFC was created to facilitate an increased amount of investments into the clean energy sector and has thus far been very successful in finding significant projects.
“As Australia looks to drive its economic recovery, the CEFC will continue to play an important role in driving investment in our energy future, which will also create vital new jobs,” the Australian Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said.
Most recently, the CEFC has created two initiatives, the A$300 million Advancing Hydrogen Fund and the Australian Recycling Investment
The Australia government also released its A$5.5 billion Economy Recovery Plan, in order to combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The funds are for not only restarting and stimulating but also for reforming and transforming said the Australian State Recovery Controller.
The Australian government has started by investing A$6 million in solar energy, through projects and start-ups making solar panels for social housing. This would create significant savings on electricity bills in the near future.
From the A$6 million investment in solar power, A$4 million is being divided between ten schools.
This will significantly aid in making them greener, by utilizing solar photovoltaic and energy storage.
The rest, approximately A$1.8 million, of the solar investment will help improve energy efficiency of public transport, by installing solar panels.
Subsequently, 50 standalone power systems (SPS) and nine Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) will be included in the stimulus package.
As shown by a three-year trial, to test the viability of SPS, which recently concluded, SPS are changing Australia’s entire energy ecosystem.
The New Zealand Government also had a similar plan, investing in agritech, which OpenGov Asia reported on earlier this month
The National Institution for Transforming India, (NITI Aayog), is the premier policy ‘Think Tank’ of the Government of India, providing both directional and policy inputs.
While designing strategic and long-term policies and programmes for the Government of India, NITI Aayog also provides relevant technical advice to the Centre and States
NITI Aayog is keen to explore the potential of Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) to enhance the Ease of Doing Business in India.
Ease of Doing business has been a priority area of the government for combating deceleration in the growth of GDP and investment.
COVID-19 has instilled an urgent need for ODR that requires decisive action, with the likelihood of a spurt in disputes before the courts – most notably in lending, credit, property, commerce and retail.
With this as a background, a discussion with heads of legal firms and industry representatives and NITI Ayog was co-hosted by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) on 8 August.
ODR is the resolution of disputes, particularly small- and medium-value cases, using digital technology and techniques of Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR), such as negotiation, mediation, and arbitration.
LegalTech in general and ODR, in particular, can be a game-changer for citizens as well as Indian businesses, particularly MSMEs. It has the potential to
- reduce the cost of dispute resolution in the face of rising cases and disputes
- allow citizens and consumers to raise any grievances they may have at the click of a button and have an independent third-party firm review and address their grievance.
- in the medium-term, once ODR firms have collected enough data around disputes, it can start feeding back into business decisions regarding the product and service being offered
The benefits can help businesses sharpen their offerings apart from improving access to dispute resolution. They can truly help businesses enhance consumer trust and improve customer retention.
Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog said India is witnessing a visionary period in the history of India’s court system.
In today’s age of data-driven solutions and machine learning, ODR provides the potential to resolve a substantial percentage of disputes at the site of their occurrence without burdening the courts.
Progressive and disruptive changes in justice delivery are critical components that can alter the course of access to justice in an unprecedented way.
Former Supreme Court Justice, B.N. Srikrishna said ODR could complement the court system. As an auxiliary to the system, it could limit the large numbers of litigations present in courts.
ODR does away with the need of the A litigant to travel, attend face-face hearings and can resolve disputes through the electronic platform. Online Dispute Resolution can help deliver justice to the doorstep of the litigant.
It was felt that pandemic has presented an opportunity to not just use technology to optimise the old way of doing things, but to be creative, create the right alliances and to bring in transformation.
This was the opportunity to reimagine dispute and conflict resolution for the future, for the 21st century and post pandemic era.
Innovative methods like Online Dispute Resolution have extensive application and can be used to resolve a wide variety of commercial disputes.
Recognising the essence of ODR, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) has also undertaken a plethora of initiatives such as setting up a CII Centre for Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR).
Through this Centre, CII plans to impart training and undertake analysis through research papers, seminars and conferences.
Interaction with various national and international arbitration forums and other stakeholders in promoting arbitration is also planned.
These initiatives will reduce time and cost to litigation and can advocate harmony in the legislature, executive and the judiciary.
It was opined that ODR should be promoted vigorously and any constraint in law or procedures that reduces its efficacy must be eliminated.’
A need to facilitate online ombudsperson platforms to resolve disputes at the pre-litigation stage was also proposed.
Online dispute resolution can be very substantive for India, it was expressed, as it will bring the labour market outsiders back into the labour force.
People who prefer flexibility, gig economy and those who can’t commute will be greatly benefitted.
However, to enable ODR to reach its full potential will require an significant public-private collaboration.
ODR startups will be a critical stakeholder in this as they are the ones working on the actual solutions to the different use case categories.
A multi-stakeholder exercise will be undertaken in the coming weeks to enable ODR in India in a sustainable, efficient, and collaborative manner.
Desh Gaurav Sekhri, OSD, NITI Aayog, said: ‘We need to enable an ecosystem that is conducive for the entire landscape of stakeholders being active participants to make sure ODR becomes a point of first contact for dispute avoidance, containment and resolution.’
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently inaugurated the Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra – an interactive experience centre on the Swachh Bharat Mission at the Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti at Rajghat, New Delhi.
The Swachh Bharat Mission (Clean India Mission) is an initiative to accelerate efforts to achieve universal sanitation coverage and to put focus on sustainable cleanliness.
The mission aims to move the nation from having over 500 million people defecating in the open in 2014 to becoming open defecation free.
While predominantly relating to cleanliness and sanitation, the mission is cross cutting and is immersed in all ministries, agencies and governance.
For example, recently, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology organised a seminar on E-waste Management under the aegis of Swachh Bharat Mission.
Among the key visions and pillars of the Swachh Bharat Mission is to encourage cost effective and appropriate technologies for ecologically safe and sustainable sanitation.
The SBM has been adopting and deploying cutting edge technology in an effort to accelerate its mission as well as to make it more efficient.
Technology offers new ways to involve the public in last mile tracking. Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) is using IOT and tech solutions to collect citizen feedback to monitor the quality of public toilet cleanliness.
This independent audit lens helps cities track third-party service providers and improve service.
E-awareness initiatives, such as online courses on sanitation management, can be used to shape behaviours.
Vehicle tracking solutions have been deployed in many cities to monitor waste collection and truck route optimisation.
Biometric mobile attendance apps track field sanitation staff. The challenge in governance is always lack of resources and staff.
Civic tech enables cities to identify the hot spots and patterns, and thus respond dynamically and better use constrained resources.
The latest platform is an interactive experience centre on the Swachh Bharat Mission (Clean India Mission) at the Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti at Rajghat, New Delhi.
A tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, the Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra (RSK) was first announced by the Prime Minister on 10th April 2017, on the occasion of the centenary celebrations of Gandhiji’s Champaran Satyagraha.
The centre has a innovative mix of digital and outdoor installations tracking India’s ambitious cleanliness transformation.
There are three distinct sections of the Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra.
Hall 1 has a unique 360° audio visual immersive show which provides an overview of the Swachh Bharat journey.
Hall 2 contains a series of interactive LED panels, hologram boxes, interactive games and much more on the Swachh Bharat Mission.
The Prime Minister also saw the installations in the lawn adjacent to RSK which showcase three exhibits which are synonymous with the Swachh Bharat Mission.
It includes Mahatma Gandhi leading people to the Swachhata pledge, Rani Mistris of rural Jharkhand and children swachhagrahis who call themselves Vaanar Sena.
After taking a tour of the entire RSK, the Prime Minister briefly visited the souvenir centre and then interacted with 36 school students from Delhi, representing all states and Union Territories of India.
After interacting with the children, the Prime Minister addressed the nation and dedicated the RSK as a permanent tribute to Mahatma Gandhi.
He reiterated the importance of swachhata in daily life, especially during the fight against the coronavirus.
The Prime Minister launched ‘Gandagi Mukt Bharat’, (Dirt Free India), a special week long campaign for swachhata (cleanliness) in the run up to Independence Day. Every day till 15th August there will be special cleanliness initiatives in urban and rural India to re-enforce the mission.
While presenting plans for 2020, Minister for Energy and Mineral Resources (EMR), Minister Arifin Tasrif said the EMR sector is the largest contributor of Non-Tax State Revenue (PNBP).
The sectors consist of PNBP from Oil and Gas, Mineral and Coal, NRE, as well as other PNBP from Oil and Gas DMO, HR development services, education services, and R&D services organized by public service agencies (BLU) within the Ministry.
Arifin explains the EMR sector contributes Rp 172.9 trillion (US$ 11.8 billion) to the PNBP, or 81% of the Rp 214.3 trillion (US$ 14.6 billion) target.
Investment in the EMR sector in 2019 was US$ 31.9 billion or 96% of the target US$ 33.4 billion, consisting of investment in the oil and gas subsector US$ 12.5 billion; electricity US$ 12.0 billion; mineral and coal US$ 5.9 billion and NRE US$ 1.5 billion.
Investment in 2020 is set higher at US$ 35.9 billion.
Indonesia continues to search for extraordinary young innovators and entrepreneurs in the energy sector.
This initiative has received full support from the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (ESDM) and is predicted to be an economic driver in the future, especially in accelerating innovation in new renewable energy (EBT).
Speaking at an Energy Solutions webinar in Jakarta, ESDM Ministry Expert Staff for Environment and Spatial Planning Saleh Abdurrahman said in the new normal has changed the energy landscape.
Development of fossil energy is becoming increasingly difficult – both to raise resources from multinational funding institutions and be sustainable.
Moreover, the transformation of EBT can change from a cost center to a profit center.
This change cannot be separated from the global dynamics that tend to experience a shift in energy consumption and the application of technology.
It was recorded that in the first quarter of 2020, the existence of Covid-19 was able to reduce world energy demand by 3.8% compared to the same period last year.
Rather than see this as a negative, this scenario should be used as an opportunity for the younger generation to seek new breakthroughs in the field of clean energy.
As businesspeople. energy entrepreneurs must be able to anticipate all possibilities. In the reduced demand, they must be able to find creative ideas to find breakthroughs in developing renewable energy.
For Indonesia, Saleh opined, one of the types of energy that can be cultivated and become the most prospective business fields in the future is solar photovoltaic (PV) and wind.
The two businesses were able to restore the level of confidence in energy investment, which according to the International Energy Agency (IEA) fell 20% in 2020.
On average, solar PV and wind will dominate the development of EBT technology going forward until 2040.
This condition is supported by the downward trend in renewable energy prices which is getting better from year to year.
The average world solar PV price of USD 250 per Mega Watt hour (MWh) in 2018 is now below US$ 100 per MWh and similarly, for wind.
The presence of EBT is expected to be able to fill opportunities in meeting energy needs, which are currently still dominated by fossil energy.
In the future, Saleh said that Indonesia will no longer be determined by large generators. In the event of a disruption, all of the public’s electricity supply will not be disrupted. This is called a small scale or distributed energy system.
The convenor of the webinar said the company is committed to continue to meet the world’s energy needs, increase economic growth, preserve the environment and have a positive impact on the surrounding community.