On 1 November 2019, PFAN’s Thailand Country Coordinator, Itty Varugis, participated in a high-level seminar on circular economy, waste management and sustainability. The seminar, which was co-hosted by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), and Thailand Greenhouse Gas Management Organization (TGO), was among a series of sideline events at the 35th ASEAN Summit held in Bangkok from 1-4 November 2019.

More than two hundred high-level participants from both the public and private sectors, including EEC Secretary General Kanit Sangsubhan, Thai Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Varawut Silpa-archa, and TGO Chairman Kurujit Nakornthap, attended the event. Key issues on sustainability and the importance of partnerships and stakeholder involvement for the implementation of the circular economy in the EEC area were discussed in the seminar.

At the event, Itty participated as part of a panel discussion entitled Technology, Innovation, and Climate Action Toward Sustainability: From Local to Global. Other panelists include Dr. Pongvipa Lohsomboonb, Deputy Executive Director, Thailand Greenhouse Gas Management Organization; Dr. Parntep Rattanakorn, Chulabhorn Royal Academy; Ms. Mayuree Aroonwaranon, Co-founder and CEO GEPP Sa-ard Co., Ltd.; and Ms. Kotchakorn Voraakhom, who is one of 15 women recognized by the Time Magazine for leading the fight against climate change.  Itty’s remarks focused on supporting and accelerating sustainable energy innovation, and the need to scale up investment in climate mitigation and adaptation solutions. This can be done through assisting high-potential climate and clean energy projects and connecting them to investors. PFAN, as Itty highlighted, has set out its main task to help entrepreneurs fulfil their potential and contribute to sustainability.