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PM Lee to meet Malaysia's PM Mahathir in April for 9th Leaders' Retreat

PM Lee to meet Malaysia's PM Mahathir in April for 9th Leaders' Retreat

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad shakes hands with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during a meeting on the sidelines of ASEAN summit in Singapore on Nov 12, 2018. (Photo: AFP)

SINGAPORE: Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will meet his Malaysian counterpart Mahathir Mohamad in Putrajaya for the 9th Singapore-Malaysia Leaders' Retreat next month. 

The annual retreat was to have taken place in November, but was postponed. 

“Malaysia has proposed that the 9th Singapore-Malaysia Leaders’ Retreat take place from Apr 8 to Apr 9, 2019 in Putrajaya," said a Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) spokesperson in an email to Channel NewsAsia. 

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"Singapore has agreed to Malaysia’s proposal," the spokesperson added. 

The Leaders' Retreat will be the first one hosted by the Pakatan Harapan government, which came into power last May. 

Malaysia's Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah also announced the dates of the retreat in parliament on Tuesday in response to Selayang MP William Leong, who had asked about the current status of Malaysia's relationship with Singapore in light of the recent airspace and maritime disputes

Mr Saifuddin said the Leaders' Retreat is an "important mechanism" for strengthening bilateral cooperation and finding common solutions for issues between the two countries. 

He also cited previous exchanges by the countries that displayed their close relationship, including his visit to Singapore in January as well as other ministers' visits such as those by Economic Affairs Minister Mohamed Azmin Ali and Transport Minister Anthony Loke

"The government will always seek and explore new ways of cooperation to strengthen Malaysia and Singapore's bilateral relationship," said Mr Saifuddin. 

"At the same time, priority will be placed on finding peaceful solutions through discussion and negotiation. 

"Ongoing diplomatic efforts show the two governments' commitment towards maintaining good existing ties and understanding in order to resolve bilateral issues for mutual interests," he added.   

Source: CNA/ad

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