The DNA November networking lunch on Thursday served as the setting to reconnect three historic cultures under the legacy of Venetian explorer Marco Polo. 

The event was hosted at the 665F restaurant, located on the 38th floor of the Andaz Singapore Hotel. 


Left to right: SPOTV CEO Lee Choong Khay; Singaporean Member of Parliament Raj Joshua Thomas; Italian ambassador to Singapore, HE Dante Brandi; DNA’s Rodrigo Chiari; Benjamin Ng from Asia Carbon Connect; Mongolian head of mission in Singapore, HE Enkhbayar Sosobaram; acting high commissioner of Sri Lanka U Ahamad Razee; and SPOTV’s Siti Noraini. 

The guests of honour were the Italian ambassador, His Excellency Dante Brandi; the Mongolian head of mission, HE Enkhbayar Sosobaram; and the acting high commissioner of Sri Lanka, Honourable U Ahamed Razee. 

The diplomats were purposely invited for the occasion as a tribute to the historic cultural encounters of Venetian explorer Marco Polo when he visited the territories of what today is known as Mongolia and Sri Lanka. 

Mongolian ruler Kublai Khan commissioned Marco Polo as his court ambassador at the time, endorsing him with the faculty to represent him. Ambassador Sosobaram shared with the rest of the attendees an image of a statue recently revealed in his country, honouring the Italian traveller. 

Also, present was law firm partner Raj Joshua Thomas, a nominated member of the Singaporean parliament. SPOTV, a South Korean sports media platform, was represented by its chief executive officer, Lee Choong Khay, and by the manager of sponsorship sales, Siti Noraini. From Asia Carbon Connect, one of its partners, Benjamin Ng, attended. 

Carbon market and sports diplomacy

Ng prepared a short presentation to introduce his company as one dedicated to being a premier solution provider in the voluntary carbon market. Carbon credits play a pivotal role in achieving carbon neutrality. Apart from its business focus, ACC actively engages with the public to advocate and educate on sustainability. 

The active role of Singaporean authorities within the process was also highlighted, and Thomas contributed by explaining the role played by government entities and their commitment to facing climate change effects. 

The SPOTV executives brought up the relevance of sports diplomacy. They explained their plans to collaborate with DNA in organizing events that will include diplomats as part of the competitors. Their role in promoting them and eventually broadcasting will be pivotal. 

The Italian ambassador mentioned how golf has become a popular sport in his country, while Ambassador Sosobaram spoke about boxing and wrestling being very popular in Mongolia. The acting high commissioner of Sri Lanka confirmed that cricket remains the national sport back home.

DNA’s guests enjoyed their meal, together with wines sponsored by South African Wine Cellar. All guests praised the quality of the food and good service delivered by the staff at 665F.