The FINANCIAL — World Bank Group President Robert B. Zoellick arrives in Singapore this week to help launch an initiative to save the world’s oceans and meet senior officials to discuss the global economy and the Bank’s recently established Singapore hub for knowledge and financial activities.
Zoellick will meet Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam, as well as the chief executive officers of major corporations from Singapore and around the Asia Pacific region. He will also meet Former Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew and Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong.
A highlight of Zoellick’s visit to Singapore will be a keynote address to The Economist magazine’s World Oceans Summit on Friday, February 24, to present a new initiative for greater global cooperation to restore oceans to health.
His talks with Singaporean leaders are expected to focus on global economic issues as well as the Bank’s move to significantly boost its presence in the country, with Singapore officially named last September as the site of a new World Bank Group – Singapore hub for knowledge and financial activities for Asia and beyond.Describing the World Bank Group-Singapore Hub as a significant advance in development innovation, Zoellick said the Bank Group was also looking to tap into Singapore’s strength in technical and vocation education and training and is anchoring its Competitive Industries unit in Singapore.
According to the World Bank, the Bank Group is also expanding its support to governments in public private partnership issues and is partnering with the Singapore-based private sector to mobilize finance for infrastructure. In partnership with Singapore agencies, the Bank's Singapore based group has recently completed an innovative project in Chongqing, China, involving securitization of future toll road revenues. The Bank Group is also supporting projects in Indonesia and Vietnam.
Zoellick’s meeting with leading figures of major corporations from Singapore and Asia will explore innovative ways for the business community to support the Global Tiger Initiative, with the goal of protecting the world’s declining numbers of wild tigers.