Singapore haze advisory panel meets for first time

Channel NewsAsia 23 May 14;

SINGAPORE: The first meeting of the International Advisory Panel on Transboundary Pollution (IAP-TP) took place between Thursday (May 22) and Friday (May 23), as the country braces for another haze season in the coming dry months.

The panel comprises of eight international law experts, including co-chairs Professor S. Jayakumar and Professor Tommy Koh.

It is expected to advise the Singapore Government on trends and issues under international law relating to transboundary pollution and providing recommendations it could adopt to tackle the issue.

Four eminent experts, including two from Indonesia, will support the panel's deliberations.

Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean said on Friday (May 23) after the meeting: "Transboundary haze is a recurring problem which has affected our region and Singapore for decades. If haze re-occurs during the dry season in the next few months, it may be worsened by the higher probability of an El Nino weather pattern this year.

"The IAP-TP has an important role to study and advise the Singapore Government on the possible options and practical steps available under international law that Singapore can take to resolve this issue. I look forward to receiving the IAP recommendations soon.”

The advisory panel will present a report to the Government when ready, but no time frame was announced.

- CNA/do