Friday, 23 Aug 2019

A milestone in ties between Singapore and Vietnam

Updated at Thursday, 21 Mar 2019, 11:05
The Hanoitimes - Singaporean companies want to partner with Vietnam in new areas such as renewable energy, start-ups, high-tech parks and smart cities.
Deputy Prime Minister Teo’s forthcoming visit to Vietnam will further strengthen the excellent ties between Singapore and Vietnam on many fronts.
Singapore’s Ambassador Catherine Wong emphasized that on the occasion of the upcoming visit of Singapore Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) and Coordinating Minister for National Security Teo Chee Hean to Vietnam from 21-26 March 2019 at the invitation of Vietnam's Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh.

Singaporean Ambassador to Vietnam Catherine Wong
Singaporean Ambassador to Vietnam Catherine Wong
Extensive agenda
Singapore’s Ambassador Catherine Wong said that DPM Teo will visit Hanoi, Thua Thien-Hue and Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC). He will meet several Vietnamese leaders including Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh, Chairman of the Communist Party of Vietnam Central Committee’s Commission for Propaganda and Education Vo Van Thuong, Hanoi Party Secretary Hoang Trung Hai, HCMC Party Secretary Nguyen Thien Nhan, Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Chung and Thua Thien-Hue Party Secretary Le Truong Luu.
According to the ambassador, this is DPM Teo’s third visit to Vietnam. The upcoming visit aims to strengthen the two countries' already close ties. Last year, Singapore and Vietnam celebrated the 45th years of bilateral relations and the 5th anniversary of the Vietnam - Singapore Strategic Partnership. The close, longstanding and wide-ranging relationship is underpinned by mutual trust, shared interests, and extensive cooperation both bilaterally and in multilateral fora. DPM Teo’s visit keeps up the momentum in frequent high-level exchanges between the leaders of both countries.
During his meetings with Vietnamese leaders, the two sides will discuss ways to enhance the Vietnam – Singapore Strategic Partnership, particularly in trade and investment, culture, education, innovation, security, and defenae. Given common interest in building a strong and rule-based multilateral system, they will also discuss regional and international issues of mutual concern, in particular on how Singapore can support Vietnam’s ASEAN Chairmanship in 2020.
Facilitating more Singapore investment
The ambassador said that one key area of discussion will be how to facilitate more Singapore investments in Vietnam.
Singapore is Vietnam’s third-largest foreign investor and top ASEAN investor, with a cumulative amount of US$46 billion in more than 2,100 projects. Singapore’s investments in Vietnam cover many sectors including real estate, manufacturing, energy, logistics and services.
“We have seven Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Parks (VSIPs) across different locations in Vietnam. Together these industrial parks have attracted over US$11 billion in investments and created more than 200,000 jobs for the Vietnamese people”, Ambassador Catherine Wong said.
Ambassador Catherine Wong emphasized that Singapore’s companies are keen to invest more. They want to partner with Vietnam in new areas such as renewable energy, start-ups, high-tech parks and smart cities. With Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Da Nang joining the ASEAN Smart Cities Network, there will be many opportunities for Singapore and Vietnam to work together. In this context, DPM Teo will call at Singapore investment projects in Vietnam. He will officiate the unveiling of Mapletree’s V Plaza and the opening of Oakwood Residence Saigon, and visit Keppel Land’s Estella Place and Estella Heights. He will also meet and have discussions with businessmen in HCMC.
Special events in Hanoi
During the visit, DPM Teo will officially open the Vietnam – Singapore Cooperation Centre (VSCC) in Hanoi. Singapore and Vietnam have a longstanding partnership in human resource development. As a small island state with no natural resources, Singapore strongly believes that human resource development is key to a country's sustainable development and progress.
“We are committed to working with Vietnam to develop its human resources. The opening of the VSCC is part of the upgrading and re-branding of our Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI) training centres, announced by Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the 51st ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in August 2018. The VSCC represents the next phase of Singapore’s contribution to the IAI agenda and underscores Singapore’s support for regional development and resilience. This revamped centre will facilitate a wider range of technical assistance projects, for example: sharing experiences on modern challenges such as Industry 4.0 and smart city development; urban planning projects; education services; consultancy projects and services; volunteer work and humanitarian assistance, the ambassador said.
According to Catherine Wong, while in Hanoi, DPM Teo will also officially open the Singapore Festival taking place at Ly Thai To Park, which takes place from March 23 to 24.
The festival aims to strengthen the two countries cultural and people-to-people ties. In the past few years, there is a steady increase in the number of Vietnamese tourists visiting Singapore. For the first time in 2018, Vietnam ranked among the top ten in terms of tourist arrivals to Singapore, a year-on-year growth rate of 11%. The Singaporean embassy, the Singapore Tourism Board and the Hanoi People’s Committee have been working closely to organize this festival.
“We hope that the festival will bring Singapore closer to the Vietnamese people by allowing our Vietnamese friends to immerse themselves in the unique arts and culture, food, retail and tourism offers of Singapore, and for more people to choose Singapore as a holiday destination”, the ambassador stressed.
“In sum, DPM Teo’s forthcoming visit to Vietnam will further strengthen the excellent ties between Singapore and Vietnam on many fronts. I am optimistic about the prospect of Singapore-Vietnam relations. There are many opportunities for growth. I look forward to working closely with our Vietnamese friends to take the relations to the next level,” the ambassador said.
Phuong Truong
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