Mr Rob Koehler, Director of Education and Program Development, World Anti-Doping Agency
Mr Husain Al Musallam, Director General and Technical Director, Olympic Council of Asia
Dr Varin Tansuphasiri, Chairman of the SEA RADO Board
Ladies and Gentlemen,
A very good morning.
1 This is first time that we are meeting since the Southeast Asia Regional Anti-Doping Organization (SEA RADO) moved its regional base here, so it gives me great pleasure to welcome our friends from our neighbouring Southeast Asian countries, the World Anti-Doping Agency and the Olympic Council of Asia to Singapore.
2 On behalf of the Anti-Doping Singapore (ADS) and the Singapore Sports Council (SSC), we are deeply honoured and fully committed to work together with our fellow ASEAN members to realise our mutual aspirations for a doping free sporting arena.
3 At SSC, we believe that sport can enrich lives and help us prepare for challenges in the future. In July last year, the SSC launched the Vision 2030 project to explore how sport can be used as a national strategy to help our people achieve their potential, strengthen our community bonds and build our nation. Many of us here have experienced on a personal level, the power that sport holds to bridge divides and ignite our national spirit. More important, it goes beyond the pursuit for excellence and podium finishes.
4 Sport is built on the principles of fair play, sportsmanship and professionalism. It represents who we are and what we stand for. With Vision 2030, we want to create and design an environment where the values and principles of sport become embedded in our daily actions. Our united stand on anti-doping aligns well with our aspirations for Vision 2030, to provide more opportunities for our people to live better, through sport.
5 Sport has often been regarded as a powerful means to build character. But today's sporting arena suggests that playing sport alone may not necessarily bring to bear, the values of sport. Sport reveals the best and worst of our character.
6 While many athletes continue to capture our imagination and inspire us with their will to win, there are others who continue to stain the integrity of sport with their compromising conduct and poor display of character.
7 As sports administrators, we play an integral part in shaping and moulding that character. Our commitment to educate and consciously cultivate the values of sport can provide more positive experiences and traits for our athletes to take with them in their quest for glory.
8 The challenge for anti-doping authorities around the world remains heavily on our ability to tap on our shared resources to tackle doping from a broad front, including key focuses on testing and education. Today's meeting and workshop illustrates how, as ASEAN nations, we can work together to enhance our knowledge and capabilities.
9 The International Olympic Committee, along with WADA continues to place a strong emphasis on all countries to adopt the best practices of anti-doping. Most recently, members of WADA's Athlete Committee came together to support and rally on governments to continue their commitment to uphold the statutes in the World Anti-Doping Code. Former Olympic snowboarder Sara Fischer, who was acting chairperson for the meeting said:
"The Code is the glue that unites the wide number of anti-doping organizations around the world and allows them to approach the problem in a regulated and unified way."
10 Our meeting here today is anchored on the same unified spirit.
As members of the ASEAN community, the exchange of ideas and expertise inspired through events like today can go a long way to help us grow together.
11 Our fight to preserve the institution and integrity of sport, our convictions for a doping free sporting arena is certainly a challenging task, but I'm confident that together, we can strengthen our anti-doping processes and procedures for a cleaner, safer, ASEAN region in the years to come.
12 Thank you.