Resolution on Environment and Development

Singapore, 18 February 1992

AWARE, that the pursuit of sustainable development is essential for a better quality of life for the people of ASEAN today and in the future;

FURTHER AWARE, that sustainable development, especially the management of the environment, requires close cooperation among and between the member countries of ASEAN in particular and global cooperation in general, and that ASEAN should therefore strengthen such cooperation;

RECOGNISING, that environmental and population factors must be integrated into developmental efforts in order to achieve sustainable development;

FURTHER RECOGNISING, that natural resources and environmental accounting and valuation of environmental and ecological factors are essential to the successful pursuit of sustainable development;

CONVINCED, that the outcome of the 4th ASEAN Summit in January 1992 has brought about immense opportunities for economic cooperation which promises regional growth and that such growth will have to be sustained through, inter alia, greater intra-ASEAN cooperation;

REALISING, that the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) to be held in Rio de Janeiro in June 1992 offers a unique opportunity to put into effect programmes for global environmental management and the achievement of sustainable development, and that ASEAN should therefore contribute its views to this forum; and

FURTHER REALISING, that being a grouping of dynamic developing countries, ASEAN should take a leading role towards achieving a proper balance between environmental protection and economic development and promote its common views on these issues at international for a including the 4th UNCED Preparatory Committee Meeting to be held in New York in March 1992 and the 2nd Ministerial Conference of Developing Countries on Environment and Development to be held in Kuala Lumpur in April 1992.

IN THE TRADITIONAL ASEAN SPIRIT OF AMITY,FRIENDSHIP AND COOPERATION, WE, THE ASEAN MINISTERS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AGREE THAT:

  1. ASEAN member countries shall intensify cooperation in environmental management and protection in their common pursuit of sustainable development. In this regard, member countries shall work collectively towards the improvement of environmental quality, harmonization of standards, and jointly promote the application, transfer and development of appropriate environmental technologies.
  2. ASEAN shall continue to actively participate in and support international efforts in promoting the principles of sustainable development.

Enhancing Regional Cooperation

  1. To promote regional cooperation towards sustainable development, we agree that ASEAN member countries shall :

Policies

(i) introduce policy measures and promote institutional development that will encourage the integration of environmental factors in all developmental processes;

(ii) work closely on the inter-related issues of environment and development;

(iii) cooperate in setting basic environmental quality standards and regulations at national level, work towards harmonized environmental quality standards in the region, and adopt long term quantitative goals relating to ambient air quality and river water quality;

(iv) harmonize policy directions and step up operational and technical cooperation on environmental matters such as transboundary air water pollution, natural disaster, forest fires, oil spills, and the transboundary movements and disposal of toxic chemicals and hazardous wastes, and undertake joint actions to address the anti-tropical timber campaign;

Information Exchange

(i) encourage greater information and data exchange, particularly in air and water quality as well as greenhouse gas monitoring;

Institutional Development

(i) strengthen the institutional and technical capability of national agencies to enable them to effectively integrate environmental considerations into development plans;

(ii) cooperate in capacity building of national institutions responsible for the environment through regional training assistance programmes, regular exchange of information and management data and a greater exchange of visits among officials and experts;

(iii) work with and cooperate in providing adequate training at all levels in public and private sector organizations, including NGOs, with the aim of improving their environmental management expertise and skills;

Technology Cooperation

(i) continue to enhance cooperation in the field of environmental technology through sharing of technical information, initiate joint training and research programmes, and exchange expertise in environmental management and technology;

(i) promote the application of appropriate and environmentally sound technologies, as well as encourage support from the business sector and the public for clean production and industrial practices;

Public Awareness

(i) continue to promote public awareness of environmental issues so as to bring about broader participation in environmental protection efforts, and to do so through greater exchange of information and experiences on approaches and strategies in environmental education; and

Programmes

(i) undertake to develop and implement specific programmes relating to: haze caused by forest fires, air and water quality management, natural resources and environmental accounting, environmental economics, trans-frontier parks and other protected areas, a regional network for biological diversity conservation and protection of the marine environment in ASEAN seas.

ADDRESSING DEVELOPMENT AND GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES

  1. To address development and global environmental issues, we agree that ASEAN member countries shall:

    (i) adopt a common stand on UNCED and related issues as in the ANNEX, and endeavour to have it reflected in the outcome of UNCED.

    (ii) actively take part in international efforts to protect the global environment;

    (iii) emphasize the importance for developed countries to provide adequate, new and additional financial resources to the developing countries to help address the environmental and development problems confronting them;

    (iv) stress the need for developed countries to assist developing countries by transferring and providing access to environmentally sound technologies on concessional and preferential terms;

    (v) support call for the developed countries to maintain an international environment which is supportive of economic growth and development;

    (vi) explore the desirability of having States to contribute to and help ensure safe navigation for the protection of the marine environment; and

    (vii) promote greater cooperation among and between developing countries in the field of environment and development, through information exchange and the sharing of experience and expertise