Donald Trump accepts PM Lee's invitation to visit Singapore next year

Donald Trump accepts PM Lee's invitation to visit Singapore next year

Lee Hsieng Loong and Donald Trump - AFP 2
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and US President Donald Trump participate in a joint press conference in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, October 23, 2017. (Photo: AFP / JIM WATSON)

SINGAPORE: United States President Donald Trump has accepted Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's invitation to visit Singapore next year, the Prime Minister's Office said in a statement on Monday (Oct 23).

Mr Lee is currently on an official working visit to Washington, DC at the invitation of Mr Trump.

Mr Trump hosted Mr Lee to a working luncheon together with cabinet secretaries and key White House officials, after witnessing the signing of a Singapore Airlines-Boeing deal worth US$14 billion.

Mr Lee also met with US Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin, during which the two reaffirmed the "strong and mutually beneficial trade and investment linkages" between Singapore and the US and the importance of continued US economic engagement of the Asia-Pacific, said PMO.

"Singapore and the US are partners in many areas, but above all we are warm friends, as we have been for 51 years," said Mr Lee in a Facebook post. "I expressed my hope that the US will continue engaging the Asia Pacific, and extended an invitation to President Trump to visit us, which he has accepted."

"Long may our friendship continue!"

In a Facebook post Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan said that Mr Lee and Mr Trump had had a "wide-ranging discussion on the robust and enduring partnership" between Singapore and the US.

Pointing out the strong defence ties between the two countries, Dr Balakrishnan said that both sides enjoy "close security cooperation" including in transnational security, terrorism and cybersecurity.

"Singapore has lent early and consistent support to the Defeat-ISIS Coalition, and we remain the only Asian country to contribute both military assets and personnel to date," he said.

He added that officials had a "good discussion" on regional developments, including the situation on the Korean Peninsula and relations between China and the US.

"These issues, as well as the US’ continued engagement in our region, have a direct bearing on regional stability, peace and prosperity," he said.

Source: CNA/nc