(25 May 2017 CANCUN, MEXICO – Global leaders from various sectors of the government, civil society, the private sector and the academe convened last week at The Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in Cancun, Mexico. They are taking the agenda of the Sendai Framework, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement to the next level.
Mr. Hans Sy, Chairman of the Executive Committee of SM Prime Holdings Inc. (SMPHI), was invited as one of panelists in the biennial forum. He pointed out that SMPHI has made investing in resilient infrastructure a major component in its business operations.
“SM Prime allocates 10% of capital expenditure for DRR in construction of buildings. By investing in resilience we minimize vulnerability, better safeguard physical assets, reduce recovery expense, and contribute to local government efforts. Ultimately we are able to better protect lives, and have safer, healthier, happier communities,“ Sy said as a key panellist in the working session of that covered the topic: Ensuring Risk Resilient Critical Infrastructure.
Mr. Hans Sy, the only Filipino board member of the UNISDR Arise (Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies) said that each business should be “DRR-responsible” in the areas where they operate. That means, critical infrastructures should not just follow the Local Building Code but upgrade /retrofit in the interest of safety and protection of lives.
He says that in the light of rising cost of DRR, he encourages all to see it as an investment. One that not only translates to immeasurable returns but also for the greater safety of our communities, our customers, the general public. He further stressed that “Investing in Resilience is definitely one of our key strategic goals“. He says that this is key in keeping the business stable and highly sustainable.
He said in closing “We are here. We want to be part of the solution,” as he enjoins the private sector to effectively support and promote the benefits of DRR.
Mr. Sy, was one of the panellists along with other global leaders Mr. Kunihiro Yamada, DG, Water and Disaster Management MILT, Government of Japan; Mr. Rubem Hoflinger (Swiss Re); Mr. P.K. Mishra Prime Minister’s Office India; Ms. Michele Young, Asia Regional Shelter and Construction Adviser, Save the Children; Ms. Inés Gutierrez, Chief of National Defense and Disaster Risk Management Bureau, Ministry of Education of Peru who led the open discussion as co-chaired by His Excellency Wais Ahmad Barmak, Minister of State Afghanistan.
Aside from the Working Session during the plenary, Mr. Sy was engaged in delivering two more presentations to the Private Sector on (1) “Build Back Better” Principle, (2)” Business for Resilience.”
Mr. Sy joined the Philippine delegates led by Undersecretary Ricardo B. Jalad, Executive Director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) and Administrator of the Office of Civil Defense, and co-headed by Ambassador Evan P. Garcia. There were about 6,000 global (international) delegates from the government, civil society, and private sector who took part in the event.
SM Prime remains committed to its role as a catalyst for economic growth, delivering innovative and sustainable lifestyle cities that enrich the quality of life of millions.
To know more about SM Prime, you may visit www.smprime.com.