Nordic ambassadors’ luncheon: Work-life balance

Work-life balance is not a zero-sum game.
Work-life balance provides for success, both for companies and their employees - and for joint Nordic events!

A high-ranking Singaporean official, four brilliant Nordic business cases and four highly competent ambassadors guided by a professor in organizational behavior. Not to mention a service level beyond imagination. What could possibly go wrong? Nothing, according the 90 PAX crowd attending the Nordic Ambassadors’ Luncheon on Work-Life Balance at the Four Seasons Hotel on Wednesday, 2 October.

The joint organizers DABS, Swedcham, FBC and NBAS got great feedback from the participants that were excited by the open mindedness, competence and ease showed by Jacqueline Poh, Deputy Minister from Prime Minister's office (‘call me Jackie’). She has studied the Nordic practice on work life balance and is inspired to implement some of the measures learnt here in Singapore. As the Swedish ambassador to Singapore, H.E Nicklas Kvarnström, pointed out: Singapore only seeks inspiration from the best. That means that the Nordic countries are very good in the field of work-life balance.

And there was a lot to learn at this Luncheon. Gustav Heiberg from Norsk Hydro accentuated the importance of leadership, leading by example, for good work-life balance. Vasishtha Tandan from Maersk Tankers showed an extensive and systematic work-life balance&well-being program implemented in the company.  Robert Radway revealed that Handelsbanken’s policy is to tie work life balance to the bank’s strategic objectives, while Minna Rouru from KONE pointed out the importance of that work- life balance is embedded in the company’s philosophy.  

On a higher, political level, professor Henrik Bresman brought out the competence and wisdom from Jackie and the four excellencies, ambassador Nicklas Kvarnström from Sweden, Dorthe Bech Vizard from Denmark, Antti Vänskä from Finland and Anita Nergaard from Norway. Factors as nature, culture, regulations, trust, and ‘sisu’ were brought forward to explain how the Nordic countries have reached the level of work-life balance they are at now.

There was a lot of takeaway for the participants, and one of the most significant ones is that work life balance is not charity or a zero sum-game. A good work-life balance program creates more value for the company through more productive and not the least happy employees.  

A big thank you to the above-mentioned contributors for making the Nordic Ambassadors’ Luncheon such a successful event. And also thanks to our sponsors, Nordea, SallingSearch, Flokk and the VIP sponsors Astra Zeneca and Lofoten Arctic Water. The latter represented by the lovely mother-son couple Mable & Sam, who with their handout of tastefully designed bottles with Nordic water, symbolized the dynamic relations between Singapore and the Nordics.

EU–Singapore Free Trade Agreement – A Joint DABS & Embassy Event

On 23 May, the Royal Danish Embassy in Singapore and the Danish Business Association in Singapore (DABS) held a seminar about the new free trade agreement between Singapore and EU and its potential benefits for Danish businesses.

The seminar aimed at providing businesses with insights on how to use the EU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement as a starting point for increasing export opportunities, creating stronger partnerships and adding value to existing activities.

Speakers from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Copenhagen, the EU Delegation in Singapore, Grundfos and Enterprise Singapore shared their perspectives  and analyses on ‘what’s in it for Denmark’. Through practical solutions and cases, the speakers introduced how free trade agreements can pave the way for better market access and provide benefits from shared standards and tariff reductions. Moreover, dialogues and discussions went into details about new EUSFTA tools and how companies may benefit from using multiple free trade agreements across the region. Both one-on-one dialogues and workshops in trade of goods and services, gave the approximately 60 representatives from more than 25 different companies a chance to go in-depth on concrete cases benefitting their businesses.

Download presentations from the seminar here

EUSFTA in brief

The main elements of the EUSFTA is tariff reductions, removal of non-tariff barriers (e.g. international product standards), better market access (including access to public procurement contracts) and better enforcement of intellectual property rights. This will make it easier for EU companies to export services and goods to Singapore and vice versa.  The commencement of the EUSFTA is mainly after its ratification, but for some parts, it will be from three to five years.

Want to know more about the EUSFTA and how to get support from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs?

Please contact the Royal Danish Embassy in Singapore at sinamb@um.dk, if you want further information about how EUSFTA can create value for your company.

DABS Gala 2019

Dear All,
Thank you all - sponsors, guests and entertainers -
for an absolutely amazing DABS Gala on Saturday the 11th of May.
We would like to extend a special thanks to our sponsors of the event as displayed below. Without all of our sponsors – big and small – an amazing event like this would not be possible.
Relive the great evening by having a look at the photos.
Those of you who booked a table, please make sure to forward the link to your guests.  
We are looking forward to seeing you for another DABS event soon.
Best regards,
The DABS Committee

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DABS Annual General Meeting

On Thursday 21 March, DABS had its Annual General Meeting in the Danish Seamen's Church. Thanks to all the DABS members who joined the meeting and dinner which followed.
The DABS Committee 2019 was elected as follows:

President; Stine Martinussen
1st Vice President; Asger Daugbjerg
2nd Vice President; Mette Line Pedersen
Hon. Secretary; Peter Draminsky
Hon. Treasurer; Andreas von Scholten
Committee member; Anders Peter Sauerberg
Committee member; Andreas Rahbek
Committee member; Bo Porsgaard Pedersen
Committee member; Kristian Jasper
Committee member; Sofie Beck-Petersen
Committee member; Søren K. Salling

Welcome on board!

Nordic Ambassador’s Luncheon, Monday 10th December 2018

Together with our Nordic friends; SwedCham, NBAS and FBC, a Nordic Ambassadors' Sustainability Luncheon was organized to kick-off this week. We had a panel with the Nordic Ambassadors Dorte Bech Vizard, Niclas Kvarnstrom, Anita Nergaard and Paula Parviainen, talking about how the countries are working with the sustainability goals, moderated by Per Magnusson from Jebsen & Jessen (SEA). The Panel was followed by Dalson Chung from National Environment Agency who presented Singapore's upcoming sustainability projects and their focus on waste management since today only 61% of the waste is recycled. Furthermore, four of our Nordic companies: Søren Kvorning from Danfoss, Anders Liss from Scania Singapore, Marko Kärkkäinen from Ductor Corp. and Håkon Bruaset Kjøl from Telenor, shared how their companies are contributing to fight the environmental challenges by implementing sustainable business models and projects. 
We want to thank all the participants for coming and also a huge thank you to our corporate event sponsors NÖJDHS ELEKTRONIK AB, Nordea, Danfoss, DNB for making this event possible.

Dabs Christmas Luncheon 2018

Another great DABS Christmas Luncheon took place in the Danish Seamen's Church on Friday 7 December. Thank you members and friends for keeping this tradition very much alive! 
The church served as always a delicious Christmas menu in beautiful surroundings and Carlsberg made sure there was plenty of ice-cold Carlsberg beer for everyone. Last but not least a lucky DABS member won the lucky draw prize; a Finnair round-trip flight ticket to Europe. All in all an amazing afternoon -  See you all again next year!