Singapore Parliamentarians Participate in the Third Meeting of the International Grand Committee in Dublin
07 Nov 2019
Two Singapore Members of Parliament participated in the third meeting of the International Grand Committee (IGC), in Dublin, Ireland on 7 November 2019. They were Dr Janil Puthucheary, Member of Parliament for Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC, and Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Transport and Ministry of Communications and Information; and Mr Amrin Amin, Member of Parliament for Sembawang GRC, and Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Health.
The IGC is a gathering of international parliamentarians who meet to discuss the threat of disinformation and ‘fake news’. Singapore was represented at the past two meetings of the IGC in Westminster, UK in November 2018 and in Ottawa, Canada in May 2019.
The theme of the third IGC meeting was “How to advance international collaboration in the regulation of harmful content, hate speech and electoral interference online”. There was broad consensus among the attending parliamentarians and the expert witnesses at the meeting that global technology firms cannot on their own be responsible for addressing harmful content, hate speech and electoral interference, and that self-regulation is insufficient.
Members of the IGC signed a Joint Declaration that underscored their commitment to addressing online harmful content and disinformation. In particular, the committee called for a moratorium on micro-targeted political advertising on social media that contains false information. IGC members also agreed to further international collaboration to combat online harms.
Mr Janil and Mr Amrin had the opportunity to question expert witnesses, which included representatives from global technology companies, journalists, regulators and academics.
Besides Singapore, parliamentarians from Australia, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Ireland, USA and the UK also participated in the meeting.