Ravi Menon: Harnessing the power of finance for a sustainable future

Keynote speech by Mr Ravi Menon, Managing Director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, at the Financial Times Investing for Good Asia Digital Conference, 13 October 2020.

The views expressed in this speech are those of the speaker and not the view of the BIS.

Central bank speech  | 
20 October 2020

I thank the Financial Times for the opportunity to speak on this important topic and to reach out to an audience across the globe.


The climate crisis is the existential challenge of our time.
  • Never before have the effects of climate change been more keenly felt- soaring temperatures, extreme weather events, rising sea levels.
  • Recent wildfires in Australia and the Western United States are the worst in history.
  • Meteorologists tracking hurricanes across the Eastern United States have run out of names this season.
How we deal with climate change will define our future.
  • The Paris Agreement calls for a concerted effort to limit global temperature rise by reducing emissions of greenhouse gases.
This call to action for a sustainable future has only grown stronger with the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • COVID-19 has sensitised the world to how vulnerable we all are to the forces of nature.
  • The pandemic has underscored the importance of taking timely and collective actions to mitigate global challenges.
As we look to building a more resilient world emerging from COVID-19, we have an opportunity to also make it more sustainable.
  • Resilience and sustainability are complementary.
  • By improving environmental health and safeguarding biodiversity, we also strengthen public health.
  • If resilience requires us to adopt a more decentralised way of living and working, there is opportunity to reduce the carbon footprint of daily commutes.
  • Reducing waste and recycling resources not only enhances sustainability but also strengthens resilience.