The United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UN-SDSN) Asia headquarters, Sunway Group, and the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation, collaborated to hold the Asia-Pacific Solutions Forum (APSF) 2023.
The APSF was inaugurated by Sunway Group Founder and Chairman Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Sir Jeffrey Cheah KBE AO, in the presence of Deputy Minister of Finance II Steven Sim, and United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network President Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs.
The forum showcased six finalists from the Asia-Pacific region addressing Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)-related challenges in their respective countries that can be replicated in other parts of the region. While the shortlisted solutions come from Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and Malaysia, submissions were also received from Japan, South Korea, India, and Kazakhstan.
At the officiating ceremony, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Sir Jeffrey Cheah, also chair of UN-SDSN, Malaysia chapter, said, “Our focus with this event is to foster meaningful collaborations across international borders, transcending politics, and narrow interests, in the interest of humanity. I am convinced that this model of collaboration will help us build a more progressive, inclusive, and sustainable future for the region and the world.”
Sunway and UN-SDSN are playing an active part in driving the public narrative towards solutions implementation at scale. This long-term partnership gathers multi-sectoral stakeholders to deliberate cutting-edge transformations for the SDGs to strengthened collaborative opportunities among local implementers.
SDSN Vice President for Asia and Head of the Kuala Lumpur office Professor Woo Wing Thye in his opening address said, “Solution-providers often struggle with having an avenue to showcase their impact. Having more interfaces between government, the private sector and these sustainability solution-builders will enable quicker technology adoption at scale.”
At the APSF, featured solution providers shared their challenges and key takeaways from their initiatives together with high-level experts from academia, civil society, and government.
The selected solutions range from the development of portable mini-hydro power plants to the development of a net zero emissions roadmap and tools for sustainable logistics and parcel delivery services. Solutions cover a wide array of fields and disciplines to address challenges on local, national, and regional levels.
The following are the shortlisted solutions presented:
- Advancing Client-centred Care and Expanding Sustainable Services for TB (SDSN Philippines)
- Net Zero Emissions Roadmap and Tools for Driving Sustainable Postal and Logistics Service Providers (SDSN Thailand)
- PARCIS (Portable Archimedes screw): Portable Mini-Hydro Power Plant as an Accelerator of Transition and Decentralization of Clean and Renewable Energy in Supporting the Realisation of Local Energy Resilience (SDSN Indonesia)
- Community-led Central Kitchen Model for Feeding School Children (SDSN Philippines)
- An Automated Waste Conversion Process to Protein & Oil using Black Soldier Fly Larvae (SDSN Malaysia)
- Mangrove Reforestation: Restoring Ecosystem and Empowering Communities for a Sustainable Future (SDSN Southeast Asia)
The APSF brings into focus both challenges and key enablers for sustainable development in the Asia-Pacific region.
The forum comes at a critical juncture at the midpoint of the agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development as findings by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) show that the Asia-Pacific region is not on track to achieve any of its 17 SDGs by 2030, especially since progress has been hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of Sunway Group’s continued commitment to nation-building and advancing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, it has pledged US$20 million to the United Nations through the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation.
This fund has since financed the development of the Jeffrey Sachs Center for Sustainable Development at Sunway University, as well as the establishment of the Asia headquarters of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UN-SDSN) in Sunway City Kuala Lumpur.
Today, the UN-SDSN’s Asia headquarters in Sunway City Kuala Lumpur continues to coordinate worldwide sustainability initiatives with its global counterparts in New York City and Paris.