SINGAPORE – Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and visiting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz agreed on Monday to deepen collaboration between their two countries through a renewed road map to strengthen the bilateral partnership.
These include in traditional fields such as defence, education and the economy, and newer ones such as renewable energy and climate action.
The two leaders issued a joint declaration after their meeting that said Singapore and Germany will bolster their partnership in the face of global challenges such as climate change, great power rivalry and supply chain disruptions.
“Germany and Singapore will further strengthen our partnership with shared determination and ambition to chart a future based on sustainability, innovation, and resilience,” said the two countries.
At a joint press conference after their meeting, PM Lee said economic links stayed strong throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, and both countries worked closely to ensure the availability of vaccines.
Defence ties are also warm and growing, he noted.
“Chancellor Scholz and I agreed to grow our relations further,” he said, describing the new joint declaration as a comprehensive blueprint for new and emerging areas of cooperation.
PM Lee added that he would be visiting the German port city of Kiel in December for the launch of two Republic of Singapore Navy submarines.
Mr Scholz said: “The relations between Singapore and Germany are close, and we both aim to deepen them further. Prime Minister Lee and I agreed to do this today. And I’m delighted that in Singapore, Germany has such a reliable partner in the region.”
The crises of the times – from climate change to the war in Ukraine – are a clear illustration of the fact that there is no power in the world that can tackle these challenges single-handedly, he added.
“The world is becoming multipolar. We all need partners, we all rely on multilateral cooperation and we need a stable multilateral international order,” said Mr Scholz.
Mr Scholz is in Singapore for a one-day visit, his first since becoming chancellor in December 2021. He last visited as Lord Mayor of Hamburg for the World Cities Summit in 2016.
During his visit on Monday, he also called on President Halimah Yacob.
In a Facebook post, Madam Halimah said she had a good discussion with Mr Scholz on various topics such as digitalisation, the state of US-China relations, the upcoming G-20 Summit, as well as the war in Ukraine.