China & Singapore Deepen Special Relationship with Green Finance Collaboration

A recent statement from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced plans to intensify financial cooperation between Singapore and China, and green finance is at the core of these plans. This comes at a time that seems fitting. Especially when pitched along with the backdrop of the 30 year anniversary of diplomatic, bilateral relations being established between Singapore and China.

Chinese President, Xi Jinping, when celebrating this momentous occasion in October, made sure the international community was aware of the continued intertwining threads we could expect of being sewn between Singapore and China in the near future.

“The cooperation between the two countries goes beyond the bilateral scope and exerts an exemplary effect at the regional and international levels,”

Affirmed Xi Jinping in his remarks to President Halimah Yacob, according to a readout from the official Xinhua news agency.

Such partnerships may continue to surprise many, given the somewhat unstable relationship these countries have been privy to over the past few decades. We only have to visit more recent history to experience a flavor of what this divergence looked like. 2016 saw China seize 9 armored vehicles which Singapore were returning from training exercises on Taiwan, after shipping them through Hong Kong. This represented a low point for Singapore in their Chinese relations; especially considering their already special relationship with China.

But as with the seasons, so too come changes in bonds between countries. Such has been the case between this pair, ever since the exponential economic growth Singapore has produced since achieving independence in 1965.

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On 8th December 2020, the MAS announcement about further collaborations of funds with China fell upon welcome ears in the Green Finance community. Whilst measures already exist, they are to be built upon in the areas of:

  • RMB Cooperation
  • Cooperation between Singapore and Chinese exchanges
  • Digital Finance
  • Green Finance

The aforementioned follows the approval, by the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) of the birth of DBS Securities (China) Limited – an initiative directed at offering Chinese customers a more international scope in their ventures. The timing of such plans correlates with MAS’s October announcement of the launch of Singapore’s first Green Finance Centre.

In the picture: The Skyline of Shanghai. Photo Credit: Unsplash.

“China and Singapore have cemented their growth initiative to forge the relationship in the finance sector here in Singapore. This should open the doors for opportunities in the fintech, trade and commodities and renewables sectors.” said Nicholas Hanna , from Pinsent Masons

This marks another notch in China’s collaborative green finance belt. The Green Finance Committee of the China Society for Finance and Banking’s longstanding partnership with the UK’s Green Finance Initiative has evolved into the UK-China Green Finance Centre (UKCGFC). This venture has already seen more than 70 central banks come on board, with the two countries laying out joint green investment principles as part of the Belt & Road initiative.

A fact that we as an international community know all too well, is that our environmental crisis is one too great for any one country to combat alone. The job is too vast; it is one filled to the brim with nuances, and the bill is too expensive for any one country to foot. It is only through collaborative ventures, where sustainability is viewed as a boundaryless objective, that we may achieve meaningful results. This is a concept China & Singapore seem to have a grasp of.

In the cover picture: Marina Bay, Singapore. Photo Credit: Unsplash.

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed here by contributors are their own, not those of

About the Author /

Tará is an Irish polymath with specific interests in the environment, human rights, and finance. With a law degree and a year of legal experience under her belt, she worked for an NGO in Hong Kong, before entering financial consultancy and developing a passion for green finance.

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