Singapore and India discuss energy and food security in new forum

NEW DELHI, September 17 (The Straits Times/ANN): Singapore and India discussed a wide range of issues from food and energy security to green technologies at a high-level ministerial roundtable on Saturday, with Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong described the new platform as a chance to take cooperation to a new level.

DPM Wong, who is also Finance Minister, said of the inaugural India-Singapore Ministerial Roundtable: “Singapore and India share a strong bond built over 57 years of diplomatic relations and historical, cultural and family ties. for a long time.

“Through this new ministerial platform, we seek to bring our bilateral relations into a new phase.”

He was accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister of Trade and Industry Gan Kim Yong and Minister of Transport and Minister in charge of Trade Relations S. Iswaran.

The Indian side was represented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar and Trade and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Trade and Industry of Singapore said yesterday that the forum led by the leaders will allow countries to explore beneficial opportunities, given “the rapid evolution of geopolitical developments in a post-Covid-19 recovery phase and continued supply chain disruptions”. .

“Ministers affirmed the long-standing and mutually beneficial relationship between India and Singapore, with deep reservoirs of strategic trust.”

Singapore and India already enjoy strong economic ties, which have deepened since the signing of the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement in 2005.

Bilateral merchandise trade between the two countries reached $26.8 billion last year, while Singapore’s outward direct investment stock to India was $66.6 billion in 2020 .

Singapore has also been instrumental in helping India deepen its ties with the ASEAN group.

India’s finance ministry noted in a tweet that “both sides deliberated on a wide range of issues,” including financial sector operations, fintech and economic agreements between the two countries.

Ministers were also joined by industry leaders from both countries for a business roundtable.

Dr Jaishankar, who had served as high commissioner in Singapore, tweeted that he “appreciated their insights and insights. Refreshing our relationship is truly a shared endeavour”.

This is Wong’s first official visit to India as Deputy Prime Minister. On Sunday, he will travel to the western state of Gujarat, where he will meet Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendrabhai Patel and visit Gujarat International Finance Tec-City, a central business district currently under construction in the city of Ahmedabad. – The Straits Times/ANN

Melvin B. Baillie