SINGAPORE: Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has accepted an invitation from Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to make an official visit to Singapore, according to a statement from the Singapore Prime Minister's Office (PMO).
The invitation was conveyed via Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam when he called on Premier Li on Tuesday (Jun 27) on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum Summer Davos in the Chinese city of Dalian. Premier Li accepted and said he looked forward to the visit, the PMO said. No date was mentioned in the statement.
DPM Tharman said that Singapore took a long-term view of Singapore-China relations, and both Mr Tharman and Mr Li agreed the two countries could strengthen cooperation in three areas in the next phase of bilateral ties.
These areas are:
- The Belt and Road initiative, including through the Chongqing Connectivity Initiative, building a financial support platform for regional projects and joint training for officials from Belt and Road countries
- Promoting economic integration through the expeditious conclusion of the China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement upgrade and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, which will demonstrate the countries' joint commitment to globalisation
- Continuing to work closely together to promote even stronger ASEAN-China relations under Singapore’s coordinatorship of ASEAN-China Dialogue Relations and as Singapore assumes the role of ASEAN Chair next year
DPM Tharman also conveyed concern from the people and leaders of Singapore to those affected by the recent landslide in Sichuan and Premier Li thanked him for Singapore’s expressions of concern, the PMO said.