Last month I had the great honour to present my credentials to the President of Singapore. Pleased to share that H.E. President Halimah Yacob and I were in full agreement about our nations enjoying a strong friendship and excellent bilateral relations. A very positive point of departure for my mission here. Team Norway, all of you, have in different ways and over time, contributed to this solid platform.
Life during the COVID-19 pandemic has been hard for all of you. What has impressed me, is the resilience you have demonstrated, your ability to adapt and find practical solutions. The many Norwegian companies here performing “business as usual”, as much as possible. Team Norway in Singapore, with NBAS, Innovation Norway, Norwegian Energy Partners (NORWEP), and the Embassy, going strong and carrying on with our activities, digital or hybrid.
I truly enjoyed participating in the Singapore Norway Innovation Conference (SNIC) 2021. Great event and focus, which offered inspiration, new knowledge and connections. The same applies for the Resource Transformation Dialogue 2021: The Leap of Modern Recycling, Nordic Green Conference: Reducing our Carbon Footprints and Norway-Singapore Science Week 2021: Arctic Hybrid Conference. And I am already looking forward to a fantastic Norwegian Seafood Dinner in March, hopefully with plenty of mingling.
I am inspired by hearing many stories about successful collaboration between Norway and Singaporean counterparts, about the many business partnerships, research collaborations and student exchange programs. And I have noted a great potential and keen interest for doing more together, not least within digital and green transformation. Remember that Team Norway in Singapore is here to support you. So please contact the Embassy, Innovation Norway, NBAS, and NORWEP, if we may be of help.
At “Ny i Singapore”, hosted by the Norwegian Seamen’s Mission, I got to meet some of you virtually. Here, newcomers to Singapore where welcomed, including the Seamen’s Mission’s new leader team; Deacon Solveig Brattgjerd and General Manager Jan Brattgjerd, as well as the new Deputy Head of the Embassy; Andreas Aure. Innovation Norway has also recently expanded their team with two permanent positions and one trainee. The Embassy will also be welcoming a trainee in January 2022.
I want to thank you for the warm welcome my wife Charlotte and I have received in Singapore. Which makes me even more eager to meet many more of you, soon. The best part of being a diplomat, is for me to meet people, learn from them and to establish networks.
My Christmas wish this year, is the return to a more “normal” life, and that we soon will be able to travel and see our loved ones again. I know we all hope for a Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) to Norway, which is a top priority for the Embassy, and well known by the Government of Singapore.
I am looking forward to many years of cooperation, and request for your good support and advice as we go along, together.
With best regards,
Eivind S. Homme