Singapore 'closely following' developments in Malaysia: Chan Chun Sing

Singapore 'closely following' developments in Malaysia: Chan Chun Sing

Minister of Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing speaking to reporters after Malaysian election
Minister of Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing speaking to reporters on May 10, 2018. (Photo: Tang See Kit)

SINGAPORE: The Singapore Government is “closely following” the developments in Malaysia following the results of the country’s 14th general election, said Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing on Thursday (May 10).

The two countries have “longstanding and broad-ranging relationships”, and as one of its closest neighbours, events in Malaysia could have a “direct or indirect impact” on Singapore, said Mr Chan.

When asked if the change in Government across the Causeway could affect existing arrangements with Malaysia, he said it is still "really early days to talks about such issues in specifics".

"We are closely following the developments in Malaysia. Being one of the closest neighbours to Malaysia, whatever happens in Malaysia will obviously have a direct and indirect impact on Singapore.

"For us, Malaysia politics is really for the Malaysians to decide," he said. "We wish them all the best."

In a surprise result that made political history, the opposition coalition led by former premier Mahathir Mohamed won a majority in parliament, ending the 61-year rule of the Barisan Nasional.

Official results showed that Pakatan Harapan won 113 of parliament's 222 seats, clinching the simple majority required to rule. The Barisan Nasional had 79.

Mr Chan, who was speaking to reporters at the sidelines of a visit to food manufacturer SMC Food 21, said Singapore will work closely with the new Malaysian government in areas such as the economy, security, social and culture.

"We look forward to the formation of the new government in Malaysia ... We will work closely with the Malaysian government to advance the mutual interests of both countries," he said.

"When the Malaysia government is formed, we will certainly reach out to the Malaysian government as we have done always in the past to discuss a range of projects that impact both bilaterally and multilaterally," said Mr Chan.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in a Facebook post that Singapore looks forward to developing an "equally constructive relationship" with the next Malaysian leadership.

Source: CNA/cy