Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Mega reclamation project off Johor

Raises concerns

MALAYSIAN environmental authorities have approved reclamation works for the Forest City project in Johor, but for a reduced 1,386ha development instead of the initial 1,600ha.

The project had faced resistance from Singapore & Malaysians living near the site, which is close to Tuas, over fears of damage to the ecology of the waterway between the 2 countries.

Country Garden Pacificview (CGPV), the master developer, said in a statement yesterday that the Department of Environment (DoE) granted approval after accepting proposals in a Detailed Environmental Impact Assessment to "minimise or mitigate environmental impacts through integrated and workable solutions".

related: Housing glut worries over Johor's mega projects

read more

Singapore presses Malaysia on Johor Strait reclamation projects
The Causeway from Singapore to Johor Bharu. TODAY file foto

Minister for the Environment & Water Resources Dr Vivian Balakrishnan emphasised Singapore’s concerns over Malaysia’s land reclamation projects in the Straits of Johor, during the 27th Annual Exchange of Visits between the environment ministries of Malaysia and Singapore.

Dr Balakishnan led a delegation to Kuala Lumpur today (Nov 25) and met with Malaysia’s Deputy Minister of Natural Resources & Environment Dr James Dawos Mamit in Kuala Lumpur.

At the meeting, Dr Balakrishnan reiterated Singapore’s request for such reclamation works to be suspended until Singapore has received and studied all the relevant information from Malaysia, including the Environmental Impact Assessments, and established that there would be no transboundary impact on Singapore from these projects.

read more

Johor reclamation works begin despite concerns


2 massive reclamation projects are under way in the Johor Strait despite the lack of environmental assessment reports & a move by Singapore asking about the impact of the development.

According to a report by news website The Malaysian Insider yesterday, the reclamation has also raised concerns over how it will affect the livelihoods of fishermen, as well as ships using the nearby Port of Tanjung Pelepas.

One of the projects is a 2,000ha man-made island - nearly 3 times the size of Ang Mo Kio estate - that will feature luxury homes and will be completed in 30 yrs' time.

read more

Controversial Johor project to be scaled down, says report
Controversial Johor project to be scaled down, says report

The RM600 billion mixed-development Forest City project in Johor will be scaled down by 30% following the green light by the Department of Environment (DOE) to the developer, The Star reported today.

Initially planned to cover 1,978 ha, the project, which was suspended for about six months over environmental concerns, has been scaled down by about 610 ha. The new site reportedly covers about 1,368 ha.

DOE approved the detailed environmental impact assessment (DEIA) on January 9.

read more

Johor reclamation at Tanjong Piai gets go ahead

More massive reclamation to be expected in West Johor Straits as Tanjong Piai reclamation project gets approval to go ahead. This is in addition to the massive Forest City reclamation already going on there.
From the Tanjung Piai Integrated Petroleum and Petrochemical Hub website, the plan is to create the following:
  • A 'man-made' island
  • Total size of 3,485 acres
  • Phase 1 : 1,000 acres & Phase 2 : 1,000 acres.
  • Phase 3 & 4 : 1,485 acres
  • Each phase will take about 5 years to complete
  • Expected overall completion - 20 years
It was recently reported that Benalec Holdings Bhd has received the green light from the Department of Environment (DOE) for all three phases of its Tanjung Piai Integrated Petroleum and Petrochemical Hub and Maritime Industrial Park (TPMIP) project in Johor. The company said the DEIA approval encompassed the reclamation construction for all three phases of TPMIP, oil storage terminals and related marine facilities. “The approval also includes infrastructure components on TPMIP such as jetties, a land bridge connecting TPMIP to the mainland of Tanjung Piai, and drainage channel dredging activities in the waters of Tanjung Piai, Johor.”

Reclamation works for Phase 1 began in December last year after the relevant approvals were secured, and there has been formation of land covering more than 100 acres at the project to date.

read more

Malaysia: Benalec’s entire Tg Piai reclamation project gets DOE approval

Benalec Holdings Bhd has received the green light from the Department of Environment (DOE) for all three phases of its Tanjung Piai Integrated Petroleum and Petrochemical Hub and Maritime Industrial Park (TPMIP) project in Johor.

The marine construction firm said on Thursday that the Detailed Environmental Impact Assessment (DEIA) study submitted by 70% owned subsidiary Spektrum Kukuh and Johor State Secretary Inc for Phases 2 and 3 got the nod on Friday last week.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia, the company said this was for the balance area of 2,407 acres of the total reclamation area of 3,487 acres. The go-ahead for Phase 1 of the project had been received in January 2015.

read more


Tanjung Piai Maritime Industrial Park

THE MOST SOUTH-WESTERN TIP OF THE ASIAN CONTINENT - Approximately 3,485 acres of land will be reclaimed off the coast of Tanjung Piai and will form a man-made island to be sited off the south-western coast of Johor, Malaysia. Strategically located at the confluence of the Malacca Straits, Singapore Straits and Johor Straits, Tanjung Piai Maritime Industrial Park is well placed to capture value-added activities from one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world, including the movement of oil tankers equaling over a quarter of the global oil trade. Tanjung Piai Maritime Industrial Park lies at the mouth of the Pulai River just south of Port of Tanjung Pelepas, the second largest container port in Malaysia and the Tanjung Bin Area, site of a 2100 MW coal fired power station.


EXTREME PROXIMITY TO SINGAPORE - The site also lies about 10-15 km away from the Tuas-Jurong Industrial Estate and Jurong Island in Singapore. Additionally, the site is some 12km from the planned new megaport at Tuas being developed in Singapore to handle some 65 million TEUs upon completion of all of its 4 phases. The Tuas and Jurong industrial areas are home to many industrial plants and logistics facilities, including shipbuilding, offshore marine base, machinery manufacturing and the Jurong Port, an important port for handling bulk and general cargo. Jurong Island, being the largest fuel bunkering hub in the maritime industry, is one of the most important refining and petrochemical hubs in the world.

NATURAL DEEP WATER AND VAST SEA FRONTING LAND - Besides its geographical strengths, Tanjung Piai Maritime Industrial Park boasts natural deep water between 24 to 30 meters which borders the site, enabling it to handle Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCC), Ultra Large Crude Carriers (ULCC) and even ValeMax Bulk Carriers with minimal capital and maintenance dredging. Direct access to the deep water of Malacca Straits can be achieved with the construction of a short jetty trestle just approximately 700 meters. The large anchorage areas surrounding the site also have capacity for up to 1,000 vessels. Upon completion of reclamation of this man-made island, the site will create vast land for future expansion and a total of 7-kilometer stretch of valuable seafront land which is able to accommodate up to 41 berths from the range of 2,000 DWT to 350,000 DWT. With Indonesia’s Sumatra Island acting as a natural breakwater to Tanjung Piai Maritime Industrial Park, it is a naturally sheltered harbour free from adverse weather conditions.

read more

“Singapore-Lite” To Be Built In Johor With Middle Eastern Money

Although our economy may not be in the best place right now, many people still look up to Singapore’s success, so much so that they’ve made it their long-term aspiration to replicate our city.

In fact, copycat cities may be closer than we think. In Johor, Malaysia, Medini Iskandar Malaysia Sdn Bhd has been partnering with government-linked companies and other investors in order to create Malaysia’s largest single urban development, known as the Medini Project — touted as “Singapore-lite”.

Not only does this have much potential, it’s also well-backed by massive Middle Eastern investors like Kuwait Finance House and Mubadala from Abu Dhabi, according to Forbes.

read more

Building A City From Scratch: How Middle East Money Is Creating A New City In Malaysia

Ten years ago, Imran Markar was using a GPS device to navigate his way around a patch of land at the southern tip of peninsula Malaysia, just across the narrow Straits of Johor from Singapore. The area had once been used to grow oil palms, but the plantations had gone to seed and it took a lively imagination to believe that much else would thrive.

“When I first came to Johor in March 2007 it was abandoned palm oil estates,” he says. “The trees had died. It was a swamp, it was water-logged. I remember being cautioned not to step out of the car because there were snakes. There wasn't a road, not even a pathway.”

Today, the principal at Dubai-based United World Infrastructure (UWI) is able to drive around the same land on newly-laid roads that criss-cross a 2,300 acre, partially-completed building site, with dozens of cranes, apartments and office blocks rising up from the ground. The new city, named Medini, is part of the mega-development of Johor state being directed by the government’s Iskandar Regional Development Authority.


read more

Cut-Price Luxury Homes Fuel Singapore Tri-Nation Sprawl

Darren Chin gave up a 15-minute train journey to his office in Singapore for a two-hour drive with a stop at passport control. The reason: By commuting from Malaysia, he can afford his own two-story home and car.

“It’s worth it,” said the Malaysian financial adviser, who leaves his house before 6:45 a.m. to get to his job at Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. on time. “I’m saving on rent and I’m paying for my own house.”

Chin is part of the expansion of Southeast Asia’s richest city across its borders as residents and companies seek property, labor and amenities, often at half the cost or less. The result is a three-nation urban complex with a population bigger than London and an economy that would rank as one of the fastest-growing in the region.

read more

Formula One Joins Legoland in Plan to Remake Malaysia’s South

Robert Pick, the former deputy head of the U.K.’s Marlborough College, recalls the day in 2009 when he stood atop a hill at the southern tip of Malaysia and scanned an endless sea of green palm oil trees. He strained to see the spot among the massive plantations where the private boarding school would build its first overseas branch three years later, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its September issue.

“It was a leap of faith,” says Pick, who’s now the founding master of Marlborough College Malaysia, in his new office with a floor-to-ceiling window and a view of vast cricket and rugby fields. “You wouldn’t have believed then what it is now.”

Today, the 90-acre campus boasts more than 30 low-rise buildings divided by green lawns and tennis courts and is traversed by 376 students.

read more

Medini: Catalyst to the Pulse of Iskandar Malaysia

Incorporated in 2008, Medini Iskandar Malaysia Sdn Bhd (MIMSB) initiates and support catalytic developments of the 2,230 acres of land identified as Medini Iskandar Malaysia (Medini). MIMSB takes on the responsibility to creatively innovate aspects of Medini with the latest, integrated, connected and smart city initiatives.

As an integrated and comprehensive masterplanner for Medini, MIMSB has also made an impact as a developer, by building iconic developments that contribute to the growth of Medini. MIMSB has been working synonymously with other renowned developers such as UMLand, Sunway Iskandar, E&O, WCT, Mah Sing and many others, and this puts Medini on the map as the new destination in the region. 

Aspiring to be the Central Business District of Iskandar Puteri, Johor, MIMSB works very closely with investment and government organisations to make Medini the Icon of City Living for the Future.

read more

Medini Iskandar Malaysia - Smart City in the Making

The story of Iskandar Malaysia (IM) has gone through several iterations since its inception in 2006. Conceived as a special economic zone within the southernmost state of Johor in Malaysia, IM stretches across an area of 547,832 acres (2,217 sq km) or three times the size of Singapore.

Within IM are five zones, with Iskandar Puteri (formerly Nusajaya) being the administrative center earmarked as one of the investment destinations for both local and foreign investors—with catalytic projects such as LEGOLAND® Malaysia Resort launched in 2012 and Gleneagles Medini Hospital that was opened last year.

The sheer size of the economic zone has created more room for other catalytic developments. Rising to the challenge is United Malayan Land Berhad (UMLand), one of Medini Iskandar Malaysia (Medini)’s key developers, which will be rejuvenating an existing lake and promoting lakeside living.

related:
Medini Iskandar Malaysia—Inclusive Smart City
From Master Planner to City Builder
The Compass: Upcoming Commercial Hub
Incentives for Investors
Coming Up: Medini Lakeside
The Next Lap

read more

Medini Iskandar Malaysia

Medini Iskandar is the flagship development positioned as the new urban township of Iskandar Malaysia. Spanning an area of 9.3 sq km (2,230 acres), Medini Iskandar Malaysia (Medini Iskandar) is the flagship development positioned as the new urban township of Iskandar Malaysia.

Fast Facts:
  • International Mixed-used Development
  • 96 million sq.ft./2,230 acres in Nusajaya.
  • The maximum permitted Gross Floor area (GFA) of 182 million sq.ft.
  • Expected Gross Development Value(GDV) of US$20 billion over 15-20 years. 20% to be developed by 2014 with a targeted population of 50, 000

read more

Medini Iskandar Malaysia

Medini Iskandar Malaysia (Medini) located within Iskandar Puteri is marked as Flagship Zone B under the Iskandar Malaysia development blueprint. This economic development region is situated in the state of Johor, Malaysia.

Medini is a 2,300 acres (9.3 km2) urban township development planned for a population of 450,000 by 2030. Medini is Malaysia’s largest single urban development to date and will become the smart and connected Central Business District of Iskandar Puteri. The gross development value of Medini stands at US$20 billion spanning 15 to 20 years. Signature developments in Medini include Mall of Medini and LEGOLAND®.Malaysia Resort (theme park), which is designed to provide activities for families and houses over 70 rides.

The name Medini comes from the ancient name of the southern tip of Peninsular Malaysia, Ujong Medini.

read more

Controversial Johor Strait land reclamation project Forest City gets the go-ahead

Construction & reclamation for a luxury housing project to be built on a man-made island in the Johor Strait will continue, with Malaysia's Department of Environment (DoE) giving the developer the go-ahead.

Work on the project off Tuas had been suspended from last June as concerns about its environmental impact were raised on both sides of the border. Since then, all parties have been waiting for a final verdict from the DoE.

Singapore conveyed its concerns about the project on a number of occasions to the Malaysian government, asking for more information on the reclamation & construction works.

Forest City developer presses ahead amid reclamation issues

The shore of Forest City, with the Tuas Second Link to Singapore in view. Amid ongoing talks, Country Garden insists it is reclaiming within Malaysian boundaries. ST FOTO: KEVIN LIM

The mega Forest City project off Johor Baru seems to be going full steam ahead despite ongoing controversy over its reclamation plans & even as other developers have either shelved scheduled project launches or dropped them altogether.

Forest City's China developer Country Garden has already started work on one of the 4 islands that will eventually comprise the largest mixed development in Johor Baru. The project has an estimated value of $58.3 billion and is slated to be completed in phases over the next 2 decades.

Some reclamation of the Johor Strait has started, where the project will be connected to Johor via a 2-lane road. Work on at least one other island is under way as well.

read more

Medini Iskandar
Forest City
related:
Could Singapore’s port become irrelevant?
Another Singapore Next To Singapore?
Iskandar Malaysia: Why are the Chinese here?
S'pore-KL High Speed Rail Agreement
Malaysia's "gain" and Singapore's "loss"
Malaysia's ECRL touted as a game changer
Embracing, Leaning & Tilting towards China
Mega reclamation project off Johor
Malaysia files for revision of ICJ’s Pulau Batu Puteh decision

Monday, 27 February 2017

Singapore - China Bilateral Ties

Update 21 Sep 2017: Xi meets Singaporean PM on advancing ties
Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) and Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong shake hands before a meeting in Beijing on Wednesday. Photo: Xinhua

Chinese President Xi Jinping said Wednesday that China and Singapore should deepen political trust and consolidate ties.

Xi made the remarks when meeting with Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in Beijing.

The president said maintaining high-level contact was a fine tradition established by the older generation of leaders, which showed the close relationship between the two countries.

read more

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang hopes for Singapore support in high-speed railway: Xinhua
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (left) speaks with PM Lee Hsien Loong during a welcome ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, on Sept 19, 2017. FOTO: AFP

China hopes that Singapore will support Chinese enterprises that wish to participate in the Singapore-Malaysia high-speed railway project, Premier Li Keqiang said on Tuesday (Sep 19), according to state news agency Xinhua.

"China has cutting-edge, safe & reliable, cost-effective high-speed railway technology," Premier Li said during his talks with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Xinhua reported. PM Lee is on an official visit to China from Sep 19 to 21.


Singapore & Malaysia are building the 350km high-speed rail linking Singapore & Kuala Lumpur. Targeted to be operational by end-2026, the railway line will cut travel time between the 2 cities to 90 minutes.

related: China's rail ambitions run at full speed

read more

Premier Li hopes for Singapore support in high-speed railway

China hopes Singapore will support Chinese enterprises who wish to participate in the Singapore-Malaysia high-speed railway project, Premier Li Keqiang said on Tuesday.

"China has cutting-edge, safe and reliable, cost-effective high-speed railway technology," Li said in his talks with visiting Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

Malaysia and Singapore have agreed to build a 360-km high-speed rail link between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, which is expected to start operation by December 2026 and cut travel time to about 90 minutes. Singapore welcomes Chinese businesses to the project, Lee said.

read more

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang hopes for Singapore support in high-speed railway: Xinhua

During his meeting with Mr Li, Mr Lee said that Singapore welcomes Chinese businesses to the project. In an interview with Xinhuanet, Xinhua’s official website, last Saturday, Mr Lee said: “We hope to receive China’s proposals.”

“I think China’s bid will be a high quality one,” he added,  noting that the joint railway project is “very significant” for Singapore and Malaysia. He said China has advanced technology and rich experience in high speed railway construction and operation, boasting a domestic network of tens of thousands kilometers in length.

The Singaporean prime minister praised China’s high speed railway service for providing passengers with convenience and comfort. “Very convenient, smooth and comfortable,” Mr Lee recalled his previous experiences of taking high speed trains in China.

read more

“Lee Hsien Loong is not as skilled as LKY” – Chinese state media declares amid PM Lee’s visit to China

As Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong makes his first official visit to China in the last three years, the Global Times – a newspaper with links to the Chinese Communist Party – declared that PM Lee “is not as skilled as his father” in balancing ties with China and the United States of America in an opinion piece that also called Singaporeans insecure:
“Singapore was once called a “little red dot” by former Indonesian president Bacharuddin Jusuf Habibie. The term is also adopted by Singaporeans to express their sense of insecurity. It is believed that Singapore has no intention of challenging China and Lee Hsien Loong is just not as skilled as his father in controlling the risks and striking a balance between China and the US.”
Relations between Singapore and China have been fraught with tension in recent years, with the Global Times calling this period the worst in the Sino-Singapore relationship since 2016.

Singapore has been accused of tilting towards Washington in its foreign policy, especially when Singapore sided with Washington and Tokyo during the South China Sea territorial dispute arbitration and when Singapore was the only ASEAN nation to urge all parties to fully respect the tribunal ruling that followed.


read more

Right to have good ties with both China, US: PM Lee

Maintaining good relations with both China and the United States is the right position to take, even if some might hope that Singapore would lean towards one country or the other, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said yesterday.

Mr Lee, who met Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump at the Group of 20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, last week, noted that Singapore is good friends with both countries.

He was speaking at a dialogue at the FutureChina Global Forum last night, where he was asked questions covering topics from small-state diplomacy to global trade and business opportunities with China.

related: Singapore has broad relationship with China and US

read more

China Warns 'Small and Medium Size' Countries Not To Side with Big Countries: White Paper
Chinese naval aircraft carriers

A white paper released today by China on Asia-Pacific security cooperation has warned ‘small and medium size countries’ not to take sides in disputes between big countries, without naming the countries in question. The white paper, "China's Policies on Asia-Pacific Security Cooperation" was released by the State Council Information Office Wednesday on policies related to Asia-Pacific security cooperation, which also clarified the nation's stance on issues of regional concern.

"Small- and medium-sized countries need not and should not take sides among big countries," according to the white paper, Sina reported Wednesday. All countries should work toward a new dialogue system instead of confrontation, and pursue partnerships rather than alliances, according to the white paper. Outlining China's concept of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security, the white paper explained the Chinese approach to achieving peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region.

The policy package includes the promotion of common development; the building of partnerships; improvement of existing multilateral frameworks; rule-setting; military exchanges; and proper settlement of differences.

read more

PM Lee: We are not at odds with China
PM Lee: We are not at odds with China
PM Lee Hsien Loong (left) speaking to the media in Munich, where he was attending the Group of 20 Leaders' Summit. FOTO: THE STRAITS TIMES

Singapore has a broad, wide-ranging relationship with both China & the United States, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

He was giving his assessment of ties with both powers in an interview with Singapore reporters at the end of a 6-day visit to Germany, where he attended the Group of 20 (G-20) Leaders' Summit.

Mr Lee also met Chinese President Xi Jinping & US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the summit.

read more

Singapore maintains consistent position, even as it recalibrates to remain relevant, says PM Lee
Mr Robin Hu (L) Board of Directors, Business China & PM Lee Hsien Loong (R) speak at Business China's 10 Anniversary & Business China Awards 2017 on 14 July 2017. Foto: Wee Teck Hian / TODAY

The Republic will maintain a consistent position in its dealings with the major powers, even as it periodically re-calibrates policies to remain relevant, PM Lee Hsien Loong has said.

In a broad-ranging dialogue session at the closing of the FutureChina Global Forum on Friday (Jul 14), Mr Lee cited examples of how the government-to-government projects between Singapore and China evolved over the years - from manufacturing to environmental needs to logistics and connectivity - as Beijing’s needs and priorities changed.

“You cannot serve old medicine to a patient who is in a new situation,” Mr Lee told the audience comprising senior officials, business leaders and academics, many of whom are from China or have extensive interests in the mainland. “We work on the basis that the world will progress, countries will prosper and our role will have to change. As they grow more prosperous, capable, and open to the world, what we used to do & what they used to find us useful for will change.”

read more

Singapore PM offers blunt assessment of US relationship

Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong turned heads Tuesday when video of a blunt commentary on his nation's U.S. and China relationships was posted online.

Speaking to the BBC, the normally diplomatic Lee hinted that his country's loyalties to both Beijing and Washington could one day be tested.

"If America, China relations become very difficult, our position becomes tougher because then we will be coerced to choose between being friends with America and being friends with China," he said. "That's a real worry. Right now we are friends with both — it's not that we don't have issues with either, but we are generally friends with both, and the relationships are in good working order."

read more

Singapore may be small, but we cannot be bullied and we should be proud of that
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (left) shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping (right) during their meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Nov 9, 2014. (AFP via Straits Times)
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (left) shakes hands with China’s President Xi Jinping (right) during their meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Nov 9, 2014. (AFP via Straits Times)

Recently, it would seem that China isn’t too happy with Singapore. A Chinese diplomat has urged Singapore not to interfere in the territorial spat. A Chinese defence advisor has even gone so far as to call for sanctions to make Singapore pay for damaging China’s interests, on top of making remarks like Lee Kuan Yew has lost Beijing’s respect and how we’re playing a dangerous game of playing the big countries against each other.

Some trashy tabloid in China, the Global Times, has been criticising Singapore too. They wrongly claimed that Singapore had tried to push for a stronger statement on the international tribunal’s ruling on the South China Sea at the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit last week in Venezuela. China users of various social media platforms have been lashing out against Singapore. They say that Singapore is backstabbing China. It would appear that many people in China are asking for their government to “punish” us. The latest is that Singapore businesses are being questioned by their Chinese counterparts about our stand on the matter.

Oh, it’s interesting how Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post (SCMP) has described the tabloid,

read more

Chinese diplomat tells Singapore to stay out of South China Sea disputes

A senior Chinese diplomat urged Singapore to stay out of South China Sea disputes at a meeting between China and the Asean bloc of countries.

The remark was made as China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations made progress on Tuesday towards adopting a binding code of conduct in the South China Sea. Vice-Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin said after the meeting in Manzhouli in Inner Mongolia that China and Asean had agreed to release a joint statement on a Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES).

However, in a veiled criticism of Singapore’s stance on the disputes, Liu said China hoped the city state would perform well in its role of coordinating dialogue between China and Asean.

“As Singapore is not a claimant in the South China Sea, we hope that the Singapore government, on the condition of not interfering in South China Sea issues, will actively promote cooperation between China and Asean,” Liu said.
related: The South China Sea shadow over Beijing’s ties with Singapore

read more

Can Singapore be friends with China and everyone else?

The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) is celebrating its golden jubilee this year. As part of the celebrations, the RSN successfully organised the first International Maritime Review. Forty-six ships had gathered for the fleet review. That included the JS Izumo, a helicopter carrier from Japan.

This prompted an article on a certain website to question how China will react to Japan’s participation in the International Maritime Review. It claimed that Singapore will be “caught in the middle, again”. And that article prompted a response from Ambassador-at-large Bilahari Kausikan:

“Why should we not invite any country we want? If one country or another has issues with the other, what has that got to do with us? Must we continually define our national interests in terms of some other country’s interests or subordinate our interests to their interests? If we do so, does that not make us something less than sovereign? Isn’t that precisely what countries closer home want us to be? And why raise this issue in the first place? What agenda is this article promoting? It is based on a fundamental misunderstanding — out of ignorance or deliberate — of what foreign policy is all about!”
Singapore has the luxury of being principled in our foreign policy. While we are not rash in our interactions with other countries, we will not be bullied or intimidated. And thankfully so. Because if we can be bullied or intimidated, what will our immediate neighbours think? That said, we don’t go around picking fights. As long as other nations don’t threaten our long-term national interests, we are more than willing to be friends with them. That is the case with our immediate neighbours. That is the case with USA, Japan, India. And that is definitely the case with China.

read more

3 myths about Singapore-China ties
Much chatter online & off has taken place on why Singapore's PM Lee Hsien Loong did not attend the inaugural Belt & Road Forum in Beijing last weekend

The event organised by China had heads of state & government from 29 countries attending, including 7 out of 10 from Asean. Singapore was represented by National Development Minister Lawrence Wong.

2 schools of thought prevailed: China snubbed Singapore. No, it was Singapore that didn't want to take part.

3 myths floating out there that merit being plucked from the ocean of misinformation & tossed into the incinerator:
  • SINGAPORE HAS CHANGED ITS STANCE ON CHINA AND NOW ALIGNS ITSELF MORE OVERTLY WITH THE UNITED STATES
  • SINGAPORE IS A CHINESE SOCIETY AND SHOULD BE MORE SYMPATHETIC TO CHINA
  • CHINA IS OUT TO PUNISH SINGAPORE, AND SINGAPOREANS SHOULD FEEL WORRIED ABOUT THIS AND PRESSURE THE SINGAPORE GOVERNMENT TO BE MORE ACCOMMODATING OF CHINA

read more

Singapore risks being left out of the loop on B&R regional integration

Delegates from over 130 countries gathered in Beijing to discuss cooperation, trade and development at the first Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation recently. Right after the conference ended, it came to light that Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong had not been present at the forum. Media speculated that Lee was not invited by China. For seasoned Asia-watchers, it was a watershed moment in regional affairs and marked the end of the era of amicable ties that Lee's father, Lee Kuan Yew, had so painstakingly nurtured with Asia's economic superpower.

What this means is that China no longer regards Singapore as a friend. Despite cordial links with the elder Lee's government, one thing had long irked Beijing: the offer by Singapore of its supremely strategic location to the US for military activities in the region. But other aspects of the relationship were healthy enough that the Chinese overlooked not just that, but even Singapore's military cooperation with Taiwan. Moreover, China understood that Singapore, with no natural resources, needed to keep sound ties with the US in order to survive and prosper. The Chinese readily accepted the island state's policy of political equidistance between China and the US.

Since 2011, however, the Americans have intensified their campaign to contain China, in the guise of its "pivot" to Asia. Simultaneously, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has junked his father's judicious balancing act and turned his country almost into a de facto military base for the US Navy. His words, and those of his ministers, have become increasingly, even enthusiastically, pro-US and China-skeptical, if not outright anti-China.

read more

5 ways China can sink our economy
Picture

LET'S NOT BEAT around the bush. PM Lee Hsien Loong's absence at the New Silk Road summit currently taking place in China is a big deal.

Was he not invited or did he elect not to attend (and despatched National Development Minister Lawrence Wong instead)? The former seems the more plausible account. Either way, the development can only be described as doomy.

The summit, attended by 28 heads of government, is Beijing's way of announcing its intention of breaking out from under the United State's world domination, at least in the sphere of trade and commerce. Here are are five ways Beijing is doing this:
  • Melaka Gateway
  • East Coast Railway Line (ECRL)
  • New Silk Road
  • Arctic Route
  • Kra Canal

read more

China Frictions May See Singapore Miss Out on Belt-Road Billions
China’s plan for a maritime “Silk Road” to Europe is helping channel funds to Southeast Asia for roads, railways and ports. But amid the deals bonanza, one country risks missing out

Despite strong historical and cultural ties to China, the tiny state of Singapore has found itself in Beijing’s crosshairs, in part for its stance over territorial disputes in the South China Sea. As other Southeast Asian leaders lined up to meet President Xi Jinping at a summit in Beijing this week for his Belt-and-Road Initiative, Singapore was represented by National Development Minister Lawrence Wong.

China views Singapore as being less supportive of Xi’s plan because unlike other countries that announced their leaders would attend without requiring a formal invitation, Singapore sought an invite, according to people familiar with the matter. They asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the information.
“The cooler political relationship between Singapore and China could have ripple effects which influence economic and trade relations,” said Lu Jianren, a researcher at the China-Asean Research Institute at China’s Guangxi University. “Singapore has been less proactive to work with China while many leaders in the region showed greater enthusiasm that they want Beijing to be more involved in Southeast Asian growth.”
China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. “I wouldn’t say we have major problems; we’ve had some issues and some incidents,” Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has said of China, in an interview aired by the BBC in March.

read more

Singapore risks being left out of the loop on B&R regional integration

Indeed, on a visit to the US White House in 2013, Lee saw fit to joke about pig soup and pollution at China's expense.

In Chinese, if not Asian culture and diplomatic protocol, this was a big faux pas - all the more so as it occurred in the capital of China's No. 1 strategic rival.

Too often, Singapore, then at the height of its prosperity, seemed to be flaunting its new orientation, without regard for Chinese sensibilities

read more

WHAT BELT AND ROAD SNUB MEANS FOR SINGAPORE’S TIES WITH CHINA
Not invited: Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Photo: AFP
Not invited Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong Photo: AFP

China’s decision not to invite Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to last weekend’s Belt and Road Forum highlights the still-strained ties between the two countries, observers say, though officials in the Lion City have tried to shrug off talk of any diplomatic rift.

Of the 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) members, only three countries were not represented by their heads of government at the high-level summit in Beijing: Singapore, Thailand and Brunei. Twenty-nine national leaders and the representatives of 28 other countries attended the two-day meeting to discuss the China-led initiative to rebuild the ancient Silk Road trade route through a network of new ports, railways and roads.

The Singapore delegation was led by national development minister Lawrence Wong. In an interview with travelling Singaporean media, Wong revealed that the invitations were decided by China. It was the first official acknowledgement that Lee was not invited.

read more

One Belt, One Road, One Singapore – Analysis
Main routes of the Silk Road. Source: Wikipedia Commons.

In the 14th century, Mongol dominance in Asia resulted in the Pax Mongolica, a framework of peaceful trading relationships straddling the Maritime and Overland Silk Roads, allowing the Kingdom of Singapura to flourish into a wealthy entrepot trading port.

Today, the two roads are severed, and trade between Central Asia and Singapore is tiny, much more so for non-oil merchandise. The low volume of trade is evident considering Central Asia’s landlocked position presents a significant barrier of trade to the maritime trading hub that is Singapore. Today, China’s One Belt-One Road (OBOR) initiative promises to direct international attention to regional infrastructure development, effectively resurrecting a new Pax Sinica.

This new economic paradigm could well create exciting new opportunities for Singaporean trade and investment in an untapped region. This report will focus on Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, and the ways Singapore can capitalize on its unique expertise in the OBOR initiative.

read more

China no longer regards Singapore as a friend: pro-Beijing newspaper

Singapore Prime Minister’s absence from the One Belt One Road forum held in China earlier in May is “a watershed moment in regional affairs and marked the end of the era of amicable ties that Lee’s father, Lee Kuan Yew, had so painstakingly nurtured with Asia’s economic superpower.”

This was the view of “seasoned Asia-watchers”, said the pro-Beijing newspaper, The Global Times.

For the uninitiated, The Global Times is regarded as the vehicle whose “messages are a transmission from within the heart of CCP power.”

read more

PM Lee not invited to Belt and Road forum, is S’pore in trouble?

The high-profile “Belt and Road” Forum recently held in Beijing from May 14 to 15, attended by 29 national leaders and the representatives of 28 other countries, captured the world’s attention with Chinese President Xi Jinping pledging to splash the cash to help revive ancient trade routes and build infrastructure across the region.

The amount of investment planned so far for the initiative is massive – over US$1 trillion.

Even more trade and investment plans – US$113 billion-worth – was announced at the forum on top of previous commitments. It is no wonder that, China’s growing political and economic dominance coupled with the scope of “Belt and Road” has sparked concerns of possible debt-trap diplomacy among countries that have benefited or will benefit from China’s ambitious regional agenda.

read more

What China’s snub of Singapore means

But while nearly half of the 57 countries were not represented by their heads of government, foreign policy experts said Lee’s absence was conspicuous as it provided clues on the extent of the fallout following a protracted diplomatic spat between the two countries over the past year.

Xue Li, a senior research fellow at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences think tank, said China’s decision not to invite the Singaporean leader reflected a growing belief in Beijing that the Lion City sought only economic benefits from China, while “relying on the US for security”.

“China is gradually recognising this and therefore doesn’t really care if the Singapore PM attended or not,” Xue said.

read more

Singapore May Miss Out on Belt-Road Billions
China Snub Means Singapore May Miss Out on Belt-Road Billions

China’s plan for a maritime “Silk Road” to Europe is helping channel funds to Southeast Asia for roads, railways and ports.

But amid the deals bonanza, one country risks missing out. Despite strong historical and cultural ties to China, the tiny state of Singapore has found itself in Beijing’s crosshairs, in part for its stance over territorial disputes in the South China Sea.

As other Southeast Asian leaders lined up to meet President Xi Jinping at a summit in Beijing this week for his Belt-and-Road Initiative, Singapore was represented by National Development Minister Lawrence Wong. China views Singapore as being less supportive of Xi’s plan.

read more

How China snubbed Singapore at the Belt and Road summit

Among the 29 Heads of State who converged on Beijing for the Belt and Road Summit earlier this week were leaders of seven of the ten ASEAN states. One leader was noticeably missing: Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Various observers have noted this absence, including Hugh White, who suggested it was no co-incidence that, like others - Japan, India, Australia and ‘most western countries’ - who had not sent their national leaders to Beijing, Singapore was aligned with the US and uneasy about China’s rise – ‘or perceived to be so’.

However, it has since emerged that Singapore was never given the choice. China had not invited Singapore’s prime minister in the first place. This is surprising, especially as Singapore has been one of the biggest advocates of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). While many other states were initially hesitant in signing up to BRI, including some of its ASEAN neighbours, Singapore’s support has been unequivocal from the beginning. Many high-level co-operation talks between China and Singapore on the subject have taken place, with both sides warmly welcoming cooperation on BRI.

In light of this past co-operation, Beijing’s snub is significant. It is fair to conclude that, if China continues to freeze out Singapore, there could be significant implications on at least three levels:
  • What it might mean for Sino-Singapore relations
  • Implications for other middle powers
  • Implications for China’s role in the world

read more

PM Lee’s absence in B&R forum in Beijing – is China still throwing a tantrum?

The reply by Minister of National Development, Lawrence Wong, was a curious and perhaps a telling one.

When asked by reporters on Tuesday why Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was not attending the Belt and Road forum in Beijing, Mr Wong said “the invitation was decided by the Chinese”, according to the Straits TimesMr Wong did not seem to have elaborated on his answer.

PM Lee’s absence has not gone unnoticed, given how several leaders from Asean countries were among the 29 heads of states who apparently were invited and attended the forum which ran from 14-15 May. Considering that the forum was also an important one, for China especially, the fact that PM Lee was not there is quite curious. After all, Singapore and China share, at least according to official statements, “deep ties’.

read more

Will Singapore be the biggest loser from China's One-Belt-One-Road initiative given that its trade routes can be bypassed?

As a Singaporean, I am worried. China is doing what is in her interests.

So, even if Singapore ends up being destroyed, we have ourselves to blame for not responding to this threat.

Don’t blame China. It would be nice if answers can suggest how Singapore can adapt to this threat.

related: Will Singapore falter after One belt one road initiative?

read more

One Belt, One Road – Analysis

In 2015, Singapore exported US$61.3 million worth of goods and services to Central Asia, while importing US$6.1 million, representing 0.015 percent of Singapore’s total exports and 0.002 percent of total imports; and 0.07 percent of Central Asia’s total exports and 0.009 percent of total imports.

While Singapore is a global trading and investment powerhouse, business experience and exposure in Central Asia has never been strong. In 2014, only 32 enterprises in Uzbekistan operated with Singaporean capital, and Singapore contributed only US$50 million of direct investment to Kazakhstan over the last ten years in contrast to US$604 billion of total foreign direct investment in 2014 alone.

Central Asia is not directly connected to Singapore, and land routes to ports in the region are scant. However, as the One Road-One Belt Initiative links Central Asia to China’s eastern seaboard, Gwadar port and even the impending sanction-free Iran; inter-regional trade is awash with new connections and opportunities.

read more

South China Morning Post SCMP 19 hrs
Why wasn't Singapore's PM Lee Hsien Loong invited to China's Belt and Road Summit?

read more

China's Belt and Road project could bring opportunities and challenges to S'pore: Minister Lawrence Wong

When asked why Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong did not attend the Belt & Road Forum, which was attended by 29 heads of state & government, including many from South-east Asia, Mr Wong said the invitation was decided by the Chinese.

He noted that the focus of the forum was on outbound investments, & in getting Chinese investments abroad and encouraging Chinese companies to go overseas.

"We don't have any specific projects as of now that may be part of this Belt & Road (initiative) in terms of infrastructure," he said.

read more

The PM wasn’t invited to Beijing

IT DIDN’T escape notice that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong wasn’t at the biggest diplomatic event held in China over the weekend. The guest list was filled with luminaries including his counterparts in the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia. There were in all 29 heads of state or government. Singapore was represented instead by Minister Lawrence Wong.
Asked why the PM Lee wasn’t there, he said that the invitation was decided by the Chinese.
So on Sunday, PM Lee was giving out flowers to his Ang Mo Kio constituents on the occasion of Mother’s Day, rather than hobnobbing with other leaders over what seemed to be the most ambitious economic project in recent time.

His absence in Beijing is intriguing and only serves to raise questions about whether Singapore and China had papered over their differences since the seizure of Singapore Armed Forces vehicles by Hong Kong authorities in November last year. Or are the Chinese still pissed off at Singapore’s lack of empathy over its position on the South China Sea?

read more

Straits Times: 3 myths about Singapore-China ties
“First, Singapore hasn’t changed in its foreign policy. It is China that has changed its view and demands on Singapore.”

China’s investments in Malaysia take “decades” to be developed:
  • "As for the Belt and Road displacing the Malacca Strait as the premier shipping belt, it would take many more years for that to happen, if not decades. Meanwhile, even as port projects are being planned around Malaysia and Indochina – presumably as alternatives to Singapore – port planners here aren’t keeping still. Singapore was named maritime capital of the world for the third time this year.”
  • "At the same time, China is still far too dependent on imports through the Malacca Strait to seriously oppose Singapore. The seizing of goods in ports can, after all, easily be done by both parties."
  • “China does not have much power to put Singapore back in line, as Chinese economic statecraft so far has been relatively unsuccessful. Singapore is also in a very different position from its neighbouring countries as it manages an advanced economy and many international security relationships across the world.”

read more
OBOR International Forum Vs Mother's Day

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong not invited
The Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte, Indonesia’s Joko Widodo and Malaysia’s Najib Razak in a photo shared on Najib’s Twitter account. Photo: Twitter

According to China state media South China Morning Post (SCMP), the China central government has confirmed that Lee Hsien Loong was deliberately left out of the invitation at the Belt and Road forum.

Of the 10 ASEAN countries, Singapore Prime Minister’s absence is painfully conspicuous because Singapore is supposed to take over the ASEAN Chairmanship next year (2018).

When interviewed by a foreign media why he was not invited to the China meeting, Lee Hsien Loong gave an awkward silence.


China, Singapore set priorities for future cooperation
Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli (R) meets with Singapore Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, and they co-chair four high-level cooperative meetings between China and Singapore, including the 13th China-Singapore Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation Meeting, the 18th China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park Joint Steering Council Meeting, the 9th China-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City Joint Steering Council Meeting, and the First China-Singapore (Chongqing) Demonstration Initiative on Strategic Connectivity Joint Steering Council Meeting, in Beijing, capital of China, Feb. 27, 2017.(Xinhua/Wang Ye)

China and Singapore on Monday agreed to further synergize development strategies and deepen mutually beneficial cooperation to advance their ties.


The pledge came out of a meeting between Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli and Singapore Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean in Beijing.

China attaches great importance to developing relations with Singapore and is willing to make joint efforts with the country to sincerely implement the consensus reached by leaders of both sides, said Zhang.

read more

China-Singapore summit a proof of willing partners within ASEAN
Zhao Leji (R), head of the Organization Department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, meets with Singapore Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean in Beijing, capital of China, Feb. 26, 2017. (Xinhua/Xie Huanchi)

The Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation, the highest level of bilateral cooperation between China and Singapore starts today, February 27. Singapore Deputy PM Teo Chee Hean arrived in Beijing on Sunday for a three day visit at the invitation of China's Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli. Both leaders are co-chairs of the platform, which is for promoting dialogue between China and Singapore.

This is a good development, and at this stage it is important to remember, that ASEAN neutrality is key for a Chinese grand strategy and Chinese policy makers should keep that in mind, and work to bolster that. There have of course been challenges regarding geopolitics, despite which, trade and economic relations between the two Asian countries continue to flourish and China is the biggest foreign investor in Singapore. Singapore is also among the top trading partners of China.

Mr Teo sounded extremely cautious and diplomatic when he said that there are bound to be differences; given each country in the region has a different history and different sensibilities -- a nod at the current geostrategic questions in the Asia pacific.

read more

China, Singapore vow more "Belt and Road" cooperation
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (R) meets with Singapore's Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan in Beijing, capital of China, Feb. 27, 2017. (Xinhua/Yan Yan)

China and Singapore on Monday pledged to strengthen cooperation in the "Belt and Road" Initiative.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with his Singaporean counterpart Vivian Balakrishnan on the sidelines of a series of high-level cooperative meetings between the two countries.

Stressing the significance of building "a partnership of all-round cooperation keeping with the times", Wang called on both sides to beef up "Belt and Road" cooperation, facilitate regional integration, and promote the building of a closer community of common destiny between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

read more

By signing new agreements, have China and Singapore kissed and made up?
Clear sign of thaw in relations after ties were strained over Lion City’s support for international tribunal ruling on South China Sea and seizure of nine of the city-state’s armoured vehicles in Hong Kong

In a clear sign that China and Singapore are back on an even keel after a series of diplomatic spats, senior officials from both sides signed a number of major agreements on Monday.

The agreements on a range of issues, including intellectual property rights and a US$1.4 billion project aimed at boosting transport links between Chongqing and Southeast Asia, were signed after a meeting chaired by China’s Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli and Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean.

Relations between the two countries have been strained since Singapore voiced support for an international tribunal ruling that dismissed most of China’s claims to the South China Sea. Tensions were further ratcheted up in November after the seizure of nine armoured vehicles from Singapore in Hong Kong. The troop carriers had taken part in military exercises in Taiwan.

read more

Challenges, opportunities looming in China-Singapore relations

Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said over the weekend that the country's relations with China are "broad and substantial," even though many believe that the bilateral ties are strained due to incidents such as Hong Kong's seizure of nine Singaporean Armed Forces armored vehicles in November. The two countries agreed recently to hold a Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC), a mechanism started in 2004 but suspended in 2016, next month. But the future development of China-Singapore relations requires more than a JCBC meeting. Both sides, Singapore in particular, need to do some self-reflection and renew their relationship.

In the South China Sea disputes, Singapore, which is a coordinator for China-ASEAN ties and not a claimant, instigated ASEAN to confront China while China tried to cool the tensions. Singapore seemingly assumed the role of the Philippines under the administration of former president Benigno Aquino III, continuing to stir up the South China Sea waters.

Lee's snubbing China on his trips to the US and Japan in August and September as well as his endorsement of the South China Sea arbitration ruling failed to employ sophisticated balancing tactics and offset his skillful facilitation of the historic cross-Straits meeting between Xi Jinping and Ma Ying-jeou in November 2015.

read more

Singapore, China ink pacts to deepen cooperation in bilateral projects

Singapore and China have signed four cooperation pacts, including one for each of the three government-led projects, a day after inking 15 agreements on mainly commercial deals.

Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean and Chinese Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli witnessed the signing ceremony yesterday after they reviewed the progress made in the three bilateral flagship projects and discussed the direction of future bilateral cooperation.

The four agreements included cooperation in intellectual property rights protection, furthering collaboration in the biomedical industry, and the development of a transport and logistics hub. They are:
  • SUZHOU INDUSTRIAL PARK (SIP)
  • TIANJIN ECO-CITY
  • CHONGQING CONNECTIVITY INITIATIVE
  • FOURTH AGREEMENT

read more

New initiatives to deepen S'pore-China friendship

Xinhuanet: During your visit to China, you'll co-chair the 13th Singapore-China Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation. What's your expectation of the visit?

DPM: I am pleased to be in Beijing to co-chair the 13th Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) with Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli. The JCBC is the premier platform for Singapore-China bilateral relations. Since its establishment in 2004, the JCBC has played a key role in nurturing the special friendship & promoting closer cooperation between our 2 countries. At every JCBC, we review the wide-ranging areas of cooperation, including business and trade, financial services, inclusive & sustainable development, human resource development & people-to-people exchanges, & agree on initiatives to strengthen & deepen our broad-based bilateral relations.

This year, apart from reviewing the progress of our 1st 2 bilateral government-to-government projects at the 18th Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP) & the 9th Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City (SSTEC) Joint Steering Councils, Vice-Premier Zhang & I will also co-chair the inaugural Joint Steering Council (JSC) Meeting for the Chongqing Connectivity Initiative (CCI), our third bilateral government-to-government flagship project. Both countries have placed emphasis on the CCI as it is a key priority demonstration project under China's "Belt and Road", Western Region Development & Yangtze River Economic Belt Strategies. This was discussed when Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong met President Xi Jinping in Beijing in 2014, & launched by the 2 leaders during President Xi's state visit to Singapore in November 2015. Prime Minister Lee personally visited Chongqing in September 2016 to review the progress of our bilateral cooperation in the CCI.

read more

China, Singapore to hold meetings to map out future of bilateral ties

China said yesterday it will hold a series of meetings in Beijing with S'pore on Monday, adding that it highly valued ties with Singapore and was ready to further strengthen mutual trust & cooperation.

Details of the meetings were announced yesterday at a daily press briefing by Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang.

S'pore Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, who was invited by his Chinese counterpart Zhang Gaoli, will visit China from Sunday to March 1, said Mr Geng.

read more

China, Singapore to hold meetings on governmental projects

China and Singapore will hold a series of meetings in Beijing on Feb. 27, discussing cooperation projects and mapping out the future of bilateral relations.

Singapore Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, invited by his Chinese counterpart Zhang Gaoli, will visit China from Feb. 26 to March 1 and, with Zhang, will co-chair the 13th meeting of China-Singapore Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation, a high-level institutional mechanism established in 2003 to oversee the entire range of bilateral cooperation.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang told a daily press briefing on Wednesday that the two officials will also preside over the 18th China-Singapore Joint Steering Council Meeting for the Suzhou Industrial Park, the ninth China-Singapore Joint Steering Council Meeting for the Tianjin Eco-city, and the first China-Singapore Joint Steering Council Meeting for the Demonstration Initiative on Strategic Connectivity in Chongqing.

read more

Top Singapore-China forum to take place next month as senior diplomats meet

The top bilateral forum between Singapore and China will be held next month, the Republic’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Tuesday (Jan 17) after senior diplomats from both countries held a meeting here.

The Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) is the top bilateral body overseeing cooperation between Singapore and China. It is co-chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean and Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli.

The Singapore MFA gave no further details about the upcoming meeting.

read more

Singapore, China to hold Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation meeting next month

China's Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin met Singapore's Permanent Secretary for Foreign Affairs Chee Wee Kiong in Singapore on Tuesday (Jan 17) and discussed upcoming bilateral exchanges such as the Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation to be held next month, and the China-Singapore Forum on Leadership later this year.

According to a post on the website of Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), the two co-chaired the 10th Bilateral Consultations between the Singapore and Chinese foreign ministries.

During their meeting, Mr Chee and Mr Liu "reviewed the longstanding and multi-faceted cooperation between Singapore and China".

read more

Sino-Singapore relationship in 'working shape'

SINGAPORE and China have strong levels of cooperation but the two countries are different and it is normal that they don't see eye-to-eye on every issue all the time, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has said.

"We are different countries, so it's quite natural that we have different perspectives on issues," he told the Singapore media on the sidelines of the Group of 20 (G-20) leaders' summit in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou.

Singapore took over from Thailand as the dialogue coordinator of Asean-China relations in August 2015 for a three-year term.

read more

An important China-S’pore event didn’t take place for the 1st time since 2004

Launched in November 2003 by then Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong and former Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, the JCBC is the highest-level institutional mechanism for bilateral cooperation. It is co-chaired by both countries at the Deputy Prime Minister (DPM)/ Vice Premier level.

Currently, the JCBC is co-chaired by DPM Teo Chee Hean and Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli. Zhang is the highest-ranking Vice Premier in China’s State Council and a member of the Politburo Standing Committee (PSC) of the Chinese Communist Party, the top leadership body in China.

This level of bilateral dialogue is unique as it is unlike other bilateral mechanisms China has with other countries. For example, the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue is co-chaired by Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew and Chinese State Councillor Yang Jiechi and Vice Premier Wang Yang, who are not members of the PSC.

read more

ARE CHINA-SINGAPORE RELATIONS ABOUT TO THAW?

Foreign policy experts say bilateral ties look likely to thaw sooner rather than later after Chinese Vice-Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin’s ( 劉振民 ) visit to the island republic this week for a scheduled meeting with its foreign policy bureaucrats.

In a statement about the ministry-level meeting, Singapore said the Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) – an annual bilateral forum featuring both countries’ deputy premiers – would take place next month.

Photographs of Tuesday’s meeting between Liu and Chee Wee Kiong, permanent secretary of Singapore’s foreign ministry, showed the two men and other officials tossing the “yu sheng” prosperity salad to mark the Lunar New Year.

read more

Why Is China Playing Hardball With Singapore?

With the Philippines aligning itself more closely toward China and the election of President-elect Trump and the ensuing uncertainty about a continued U.S. “pivot to Asia,” China seems to have started laying out a new approach in dealing with its Asian neighbors. Recently, it has embarked on a charm offensive aimed at Malaysia, which led to the signing of 14 cooperation pacts worth RMB144 billion ($20.8 billion) including a major defense deal, and not least significant, the promise to handle South China Sea disputes bilaterally.

On the other side, China has over the past two weeks shown Singapore it is not content with the way the Lion City has interpreted the “one China” policy while still cooperating with Taiwan.

On November 23, the Hong Kong Port Authority (whether conscious of what the ship was carrying or not) selected to search an APL ship that was carrying nine Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Terrex Infantry Carrier Vehicles (ICVs) and other military equipment from Xiamen to Hong Kong. The SAF vehicles were on their way back to Singapore after having been used in an overseas training program that sends up to 15,000 Singaporean troops a year to Taiwan to train following the Project Starlight defense agreement of 1974. While a “secret” agreement, it has long been public knowledge that the two countries cooperate on defense matters. Media have reported previously on deadly accidents involving SAF staff in Taiwan between 1993 and 2009 and it’s no secret that Taiwanese military personnel served in key positions in the early days of the SAF, including chief of air force and chief of navy.

read more

FM calls on Singapore to respect China’s sea stance

China's foreign ministry called on Singapore to respect China's stance on the South China Sea issue on Tuesday, a further indication that China is upset about Singapore's enthusiasm for an increasing US presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

Foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang told a daily news briefing that China hopes countries will remain fair and objective over the South China Sea disputes.

Without mentioning the name, Geng admitted having noticed a recent Chinese newspaper report saying that Singapore had insisted on rendering the issue into the final document of the 17th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit, which was held on September 17 and 18 at Venezuela's Margarita Island. More than 100 countries attended the summit, including Vietnam and Laos.

read more

China’s foreign ministry joins war of words against Singapore over South China Sea dispute

The foreign ministry has blamed an unspecified “individual nation” for stirring up tensions over the South China Sea dispute after an unusual war of words broke out between the Singaporean envoy and the editor-in-chief of an influential mainland tabloid newspaper.

The incident underscores the difficulty Singapore faces in maintaining good ties with an assertive Beijing.

Without directly naming Singapore, foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said an “individual nation” had insisted on including South China Sea issues in the final document of the recent Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit held in Venezuela on September 18.

related:
There may be trouble ahead for China and Singapore
The South China Sea shadow over Beijing’s ties with Singapore
Chinese diplomat tells Singapore to stay out of South China Sea disputes
Obama celebrates 50 years of US-Singapore relations with state dinner


read more

WHAT’S REALLY MAKING BEIJING ANGRY WITH SINGAPORE?

The argument between Singapore’s ambassador to China and the editor-in-chief of the nationalistic Chinese tabloid Global Times is less about specific actions and deeds as it is about Beijing’s growing disappointment with the tiny Asian city-state.

Until recently, the two nations – which share deep ethnic and cultural bonds – had enjoyed what was often described as a special relationship. This was manifest most clearly in two recent events – China’s rare high-profile treatment of the death of Singaporean leader Lee Kuan Yew in March last year and Singapore’s hosting of the historic meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping ( 習近平 ) and his Taiwanese counterpart Ma Ying-jeou last November.

But since then, mistrust has grown, spurred by the escalating rivalry between China and the United States and the landmark ruling by The Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague on July 12 denying Chinese claims to huge swathes of the South China Sea.

related: Troubled waters - Beijing’s ‘anger’ lurks beneath surface of Singapore-Global Times South China Sea row

read more

China warns PM Lee over South China Sea

An opinion piece was published on the Global Times, cautioning PM Lee Hsien Loong with regard to what he said during his recent official state visit to US. The Global Times is a daily Chinese newspaper published by the People’s Daily news group, which is the biggest newspaper group in China. This news group comes directly under the purview of the Chinese Communist Party.

News published by the group frequently provides direct information on the policies and viewpoints of the Chinese government. The Global Times was created to focus on international issues from the Chinese government’s perspective. As such, opinion pieces featured in Global Times carry considerable weight in representing the position of the Chinese government.

The piece published on 4 Aug, started by saying that President Obama had given PM Lee a grand reception, usually reserved for leaders of big countries and American allies.

related: PM Lee’s speech at White House state dinner angers China

read more

The new normal of Singapore’s relations with China
The death of Mr Lee Kuan Yew, a muscular China and the South China Sea dispute are pushing Sino-S'pore ties into a new chapter

Up till about a year ago, relations between S'pore & China could loosely be grouped into two eras: Mao and post-Mao.

In the first, which ran from the founding of People’s Republic in 1949 to 1978, ties between the pair of new nations were mostly cold.

Beijing, under the leadership of Mao Zedong, wanted to increase the loyalty of overseas Chinese to China and did not recognise the existence of an independent Singapore up to 1970.

read more

Singapore-China ties -- 7 things to know about 25 years of diplomatic relations
Chinese President Mr Xi Jinping (left) with S'pore PM Lee Hsien Loong in 2010.PHOTO: ZAOBAO

S'pore and China mark 25 years of diplomatic relations this year.

On Friday (Nov 6), President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan will make their first state visit to Singapore. In many ways, the ties between Singapore, a city-state of 5.5 million, and China, a behemoth with 1.4 billion people, have been unique.

Here are seven things about the two countries' relationship.
  • HANDSHAKE SEALS THE DEAL
  • WHY DID IT TAKE SO LONG?
  • BACK IN THE 1970S
  • SENDING AMBASSADORS
  • WE MEAN BUSINESS
  • JOINT PROJECTS
  • PANDA DIPLOMACY
read more

Singapore-China relations: A progressive partnership

Last year, S'pore and China commemorated 25 years of diplomatic relations, culminating in the exchange of state visits by Singapore President Tony Tan and Chinese President Xi Jinping. We established an All-Round Cooperative Partnership Progressing with the Times.

Singapore and China have had interactions for many centuries. S'pore has always been part of the Maritime Silk Road. The majority of our (Singapore’s) citizens have ancestors from China. We enjoy a long-standing, wide-ranging relationship that transcends politics. The landmark visits by Singapore’s first prime minister Lee Kuan Yew (1976) and China’s former paramount leader Deng Xiaoping (1978) laid a strong foundation for the modern phase of our bilateral relations, prior to the establishment of formal diplomatic ties in 1990.

Lee Kuan Yew always believed that a strong China that was positively engaged with Southeast Asia would strongly benefit the region. That was why he suggested we jointly develop the Suzhou Industrial Park in 1994, our first government-to-government project, to promote the exchange of development experiences.

read more

Sino-Singapore Relations

China and Singapore are good neighbors, and the friendship between our countries and peoples is rooted in history. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the diplomatic ties between China and Singapore.


Over the past 25 years, thanks to the joint efforts from both sides, our bilateral relations have enjoyed fast and ever-deepening growth in an all-round way, and mutually beneficial cooperation has achieved fruitful outcomes in areas like economy and trade, investment, finance, social governance and cultural and people-to-people exchanges. Looking into the future, China-Singapore friendship boasts great potential and broad prospect, and is about to enter a new era of rapid growth.


The Chinese embassy in Singapore is committed to promoting continued growth of our friendship and all-round cooperation. We sincerely hope this website will be your friend and serve as a window on China and China-Singapore relations and also a bridge of friendship between our peoples.


read more


Beijing seeks to cement relations with Singapore

Beijing says it hopes Singapore can play a constructive role for peace and stability in the region, as it welcomes the country's prime minister who has been caught in a media storm recently for his China-related remarks.


Welcoming his Singaporean counterpart, Premier Li Keqiang told Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong that China is determined to seek peaceful development.

But the country's will to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity is unswerving, said Li, referring to territorial disputes with some neighboring countries.

read more

Relations between China and Singapore


China and Singapore established diplomatic relations on 3 October 1990.


After the founding of New China, Singapore, then under the rule of British colonial authorities, maintained people-to-people trade relations with China. The contacts between the two countries began to increase since mid-70s.The two sides established their Commercial Representatives' Offices in each other's country in 1981 and started their air service in 1985.

Since the establishment of diplomatic relations of the two countries, President Yang Shangkun (in 1993), President Jiang Zemin (in 1994), Chairman of Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference Li Ruihuan (in 1995) and Premier Li Peng (in 1997) from China visited Singapore. Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew (in 1990), President Wee Kim Wee (in 1991), Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew (in 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1999, and 2000), Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong (in 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997 and 2000), President Ong Teng Cheong (in 1995), Deputy Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (in 1995 and 2000) and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defense Tony Tan Keng Yam (in 1997) from Singpore visited China. Singapore has Consulates-General in Shanghai, Xiamen and Hong Kong.

read more

Singapore-China ties 'going strong'

Singapore-China ties will remain strong even after the death of founding prime minister Lee Kuan Yew, said President Tony Tan Keng Yam, after he became only the second Singapore leader after Mr Lee to be conferred an honorary doctorate in China.

"Mr Lee's passing marks the end of an era but it does not mean the end of strong China-Singapore relations," Dr Tan said yesterday in response to a question from a student at Nankai University. The institution conferred the doctorate on Dr Tan for his contribution to bilateral ties.

"We have established other platforms. Our ministers meet very frequently, many delegations of officials from China visit Singapore, and from Singapore to China, to learn from each other."


read more

Singapore and China


Singapore enjoys strong and substantive relations with China, anchored by a steady flow of high-level visits, strengthening economic ties, and growing people-to-people exchanges. Over the past year, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Deputy Prime Ministers Teo Chee Hean and Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong, Minister for Foreign Affairs K Shanmugam and other Ministers made separate visits to China. From the Chinese side, Politburo Standing Committee Member and Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli, Poliburo Members Zhao Leji and Sun Chunlan, Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi and Anhui Party Secretary Zhang Baoshun visited Singapore. In October 2013, Deputy Prime Minister Teo and Vice Premier Zhang co-chaired the 10th Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation as well as Joint Steering Councils for both the Suzhou Industrial Park and Tianjin Eco-city. The growing people-to-people exchanges between the two countries are supplemented by on-going programmes in Human Resource Development (HRD) cooperation.  Both sides also enjoy close cooperation in regional and international fora.

Singapore and China continue to enjoy robust economic ties. In 2013, China became Singapore's largest trading partner, with bilateral trade in 2013 rising 11.0% from the previous year to S$115.2 billion.  As of 2012, China remained our top investment destination. Besides our two flagship government-to-government projects – the Suzhou Industrial Park and the Tianjin Eco-city – we have also stepped up economic engagement with China at the provincial level through our seven provincial councils in Sichuan, Shandong, Liaoning, Zhejiang, Tianjin, Guangdong, and Jiangsu. Both sides have also strengthened economic links through private sector-led initiatives such as the Guangzhou Knowledge City, the Singapore-Sichuan Hi-Tech Innovation Park, and the Jilin Food Zone. The China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (CSFTA), which came into effect in January 2009, is the first comprehensive bilateral FTA that China has concluded with an Asian country. Singapore and China have also agreed to enhance financial services cooperation under the CSFTA.


Going beyond the traditional parameters of economic cooperation, Singapore and China are also exploring new spheres of collaboration in education, culture, social management and finance. Some recent initiatives include the Singapore-China Forum on Social Management, the education and research collaboration between the Singapore University of Technology and Design, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Zhejiang University, and the establishment of the China Cultural Centre in Singapore. Singapore also welcomed the arrival of the two Giant Pandas, Kai Kai and Jia Jia, in September 2012.

read more


China–Singapore relations

People's Republic of China – Singapore relations officially started on October 3, 1990. Diplomatic missions were established in the early 1990s based on trade and the warming of ties from other ASEAN countries towards mainland China.


Historic links between the two nations' people began much earlier than the founding of the People's Republic of China in October 1949. Migrant Chinese labourers escaping poverty and war came to what was known as Nanyang to the Chinese to Singapore, which was part of the Straits Settlements. Many ethnic Chinese Singaporeans derived their ancestral roots in southern China from Fujian, Guangdong and Hainan provinces.

During British rule in Singapore and then under British Malaya before independence, Singapore and the Republic of China had diplomatic relations. When Singapore became independent in 1965 from Malaysia, it continued to recognise the Republic of China as the legitimate government of China. In the 1970s, People's Republic of China and Singapore began unofficial relations. This led to the exchange of Commercial Representatives' Offices between the two nations in 1981. In 1985, commercial air services between mainland China and Singapore commenced.

Diplomatic ties between the two countries officially began in 1990. Singapore was the last country in South East Asia to formally recognise the People's Republic of China out of respect to Indonesia, sensitivities in the region and fears from neighbouring countries of communism in those times. Singapore still maintains unofficial relations with the ROC, including the continuation of a controversial military training and facilities agreement from 1975. This is due to a lack of usable space in built-up Singapore. The People's Republic of China has proposed that Singapore relocate some of its training facilities from Taiwan to Hainan province, however Singapore has not as of yet accepted such an offer.

Bilateral ties took a dive when Singapore's deputy Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong travelled to Taiwan for a private visit in 2004. The People's Republic of China took offence to the trip as due to the complicated political status of the region Later in 2004, Chinese government put bilateral relations on hold.


Relations between the two countries gradually improved as China and Singapore forged agreements in free trade, education, foreign investment and technology. Examples are the Suzhou Industrial Park and the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-city, which were constructed with the help of Singapore.

read more

Full Coverage:
Sino-Singapore ties on the mend: Chinese media
Singapore, China reaffirm 'good and warm' relations
Bilateral ties between Spore China are long-standing and broad-based
Singapore has consistently abided by 'One China policy': DPM Teo
Singapore, China leaders laud deep, growing ties
Singapore and China deepen ties, sign four agreements and 15 MOUs
DPM Teo Chee Hean makes official visit to Beijing with govt officials
Have China and Singapore kissed and made up?
Singapore, China ink pacts to deepen cooperation in bilateral projects
China Will Protect its Own Security Interest By All Means
China, Singapore set priorities for future cooperation
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Geng Shuang's Regular Press Conference
China, Singapore vow more 'Belt and Road' cooperation
China-Singapore summit a proof of willing partners within ASEAN
Singapore-China ties deep, broad and forward-looking, says DPM Teo
Suzhou Industrial Park example of friendly cooperation between China Spore
Strong ties with China outweigh differences: DPM Teo Chee Hean
Singapore and China work to boost Chongqing's connectivity
S'pore, China ink pacts to deepen cooperation in bilateral projects
Singapore building up next generation of ties with China
Large S'porean delegation to China shows forward-looking relationship
Top gov meeting in China shows that S'pore & China (still) good friends
DPM to co-chair China meeting
FM Balakrishnan meets Chinese counterpart Wang Yi for 3rd time
Vivian meets Wang Yi for third time in two months
S'pore, China ink pacts to deepen cooperation in bilateral projects
Bilateral ties between Spore and China are long-standing and broad-based
Singapore, China leaders laud deep, growing ties
Singapore has consistently abided by 'One China policy': DPM Teo
S'pore works on future with China
By signing new agreements, have China and Singapore kissed and made up?
Singapore and China deepen ties, sign four agreements and 15 MOUs
China, Singapore set priorities for future cooperation
Spore and China to hold top-level bilateral forum in Beijing on Monday
DPM Teo Chee Hean makes official visit to Beijing govt officials from 26-28 Feb
China, Singapore vow more "Belt and Road" cooperation
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Geng Shuang's Regular Press Conference
Top government meeting in China shows S'pore & China are (still) good friends
Suzhou Industrial Park is example of friendly cooperation between China Spore
DPM Teo in Beijing for meeting with Vice-Premier Zhang
Common interest between Spore China much greater than occasional differences
Spore-China ties deep, broad and forward-looking, says DPM Teo Chee Hean
DPM Teo Chee Hean to make three-day official visit to China
Spore China deepen cooperation to expand Chongqing's transport connectivity
Strong ties with China outweigh differences: DPM Teo Chee Hean
Singapore and China work to boost Chongqing's connectivity
Spore, China ink pacts on Suzhou Ind-Park, Tianjin Eco-city & other projects
Large S'porean delegation to China shows forward-looking relationship
Singapore and Chongqing can cooperate in new areas beyond connectivity
DPM to co-chair China meeting
FM V Balakrishnan meets Chinese counterpart Wang Yi for 3rd time this year
A desire to discover city's charms
Vivian meets Wang Yi for third time in two months
New initiatives to deepen S'pore-China friendship
Strong ties with China outweigh differences: DPM Teo Chee Hean
Spore & China work to boost Chongqing's connectivity
Spore & China deepen cooperation to expand Chongqing's connectivity
Spore & China to hold top-level bilateral forum in Beijing on Monday
DPM Teo Chee Hean to make three-day official visit to China
Spore's delegation to China for top gov meeting reveals much about our future
Common interest bet Spore & China much greater than occasional differences
Spore & Chongqing can cooperate in new areas beyond connectivity
DPM Teo in Beijing for meeting with Vice-Premier Zhang
Chongqing free trade zone offers possibilities for new tie-ups
DPM to co-chair China meeting
A desire to discover city's charms

Singapore China G-to-G Projects
Chinese President Xi Jinping giving a speech at the state banquet held in his honour at the Istana on Nov 6, 2015.ST FOTO: KOR KIAN BENG

The 3d Singapore-China government-led project will be based in Chongqing, Chinese President Xi Jinping said at a state banquet at the Istana on Friday (Nov 6).

"During my visit, the 2 sides will officially launch the third project based in Chongqing," Mr Xi said.

The bilateral project will be on the theme of "modern connectivity and modern services", and could help lower the cost of doing business in China's western region.

read more

The Little Red Dot and the Red Dragon
Chinese naval aircraft carriers

A white paper released today by China on Asia-Pacific security cooperation has warned ‘small and medium size countries’ not to take sides in disputes between big countries, without naming the countries in question. The white paper, "China's Policies on Asia-Pacific Security Cooperation" was released by the State Council Information Office Wednesday on policies related to Asia-Pacific security cooperation, which also clarified the nation's stance on issues of regional concern.

"Small- and medium-sized countries need not and should not take sides among big countries," according to the white paper, Sina reported Wednesday. All countries should work toward a new dialogue system instead of confrontation, and pursue partnerships rather than alliances, according to the white paper. Outlining China's concept of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security, the white paper explained the Chinese approach to achieving peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region.


The policy package includes the promotion of common development; the building of partnerships; improvement of existing multilateral frameworks; rule-setting; military exchanges; and proper settlement of differences.

read more

Singapore Stumbles on China's Road
China Frictions May See Singapore Miss Out on Belt-Road Billions

Despite strong historical and cultural ties to China, the tiny state of Singapore has found itself in Beijing’s crosshairs, in part for its stance over territorial disputes in the South China Sea. As other Southeast Asian leaders lined up to meet President Xi Jinping at a summit in Beijing this week for his Belt-and-Road Initiative, Singapore was represented by National Development Minister Lawrence Wong.

China views Singapore as being less supportive of Xi’s plan because unlike other countries that announced their leaders would attend without requiring a formal invitation, Singapore sought an invite, according to people familiar with the matter. They asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the information.
“The cooler political relationship between Singapore and China could have ripple effects which influence economic and trade relations,” said Lu Jianren, a researcher at the China-Asean Research Institute at China’s Guangxi University. “Singapore has been less proactive to work with China while many leaders in the region showed greater enthusiasm that they want Beijing to be more involved in Southeast Asian growth.”
China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. “I wouldn’t say we have major problems; we’ve had some issues and some incidents,” Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has said of China, in an interview aired by the BBC in March.

read more

Singapore as a 21st century maritime silk road
Picture

LET'S NOT BEAT around the bush. PM Lee Hsien Loong's absence at the New Silk Road summit currently taking place in China is a big deal.

Was he not invited or did he elect not to attend (and despatched National Development Minister Lawrence Wong instead)? The former seems the more plausible account. Either way, the development can only be described as doomy.

The summit, attended by 28 heads of government, is Beijing's way of announcing its intention of breaking out from under the United State's world domination, at least in the sphere of trade and commerce. Here are are five ways Beijing is doing this:
  • Melaka Gateway
  • East Coast Railway Line (ECRL)
  • New Silk Road
  • Arctic Route
  • Kra Canal
read more

related:
Singapore Stumbles on China's Road
Singapore military vehicles seizure in Hong Kong
Singapore - Indonesia Bilateral Ties
Singapore - Isreal Bilateral Ties
Singapore - China Bilateral Ties
Singapore-India Relations
Singapore-China-US Relations
"Singapore - US" Bilateral Ties
Embracing, Leaning & Tilting towards China
The Historic Ma-Xi Summit
The New Silk Road 新絲綢之路
The "One Belt, One Road" 一带一路 initiative
Singapore as a 21st century maritime silk road
Singapore And The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)
Embracing, Leaning & Tilting towards China
Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)
Singapore - China Bilateral Ties
Singapore China G-to-G Projects