Establishment of a Network for Botanic Gardens in South East Asia
The Singapore Botanic Gardens graciously hosted a historic meeting of South East Asian botanic gardens from 30th to 31st January, 2004. The Investing in Nature Programme, funded by HSBC, enabled nineteen attendees representing eleven institutions from ten countries to meet and discuss joint projects such as staff training workshops and the production of a poster. The countries included Cambodia, China (Yunnan), Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
This meeting marked the first official gathering of botanic gardens in the region, and resulted in the formation of a network called SEABG (South East Asia Botanic Gardens). The general aims of the network are to assist member gardens in capacity building; to make use of the resources in the region; and to improve their overall standards.
In addition to the discussion sessions, the attendees also toured the collections at the Singapore Botanic Gardens, including the renowned National Orchid Garden and enjoyed a preview of the new Evolution Garden that was not yet open to the public. The meeting was welcomed by the attendees as an opportunity to give voice to their institutional needs and to share their problems in an informal, supportive and collegiate atmosphere, something that had not occurred in the past.
A statement from this new network was issued at the close of the meeting.