Eight state gifts on display at Istana heritage gallery

The eight state gifts are part of a permanent exhibition in the gallery opened by President Tony Tan Keng Yam in October 2016.
The eight state gifts are part of a permanent exhibition in the gallery opened by President Tony Tan Keng Yam in October 2016.PHOTOS: OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT
The eight state gifts are part of a permanent exhibition in the gallery opened by President Tony Tan Keng Yam in October 2016.
The eight state gifts are part of a permanent exhibition in the gallery opened by President Tony Tan Keng Yam in October 2016.PHOTOS: OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT

SINGAPORE - Eight new items given by foreign leaders to Singapore's presidents and prime ministers can now be viewed at the Istana Heritage Gallery.

The eight state gifts, which include a golden chalice from Russia and an oval silver container from Egypt, are part of a permanent exhibition in the gallery opened by President Tony Tan Keng Yam in October 2016.

The public gallery is located opposite the Istana, in the Istana Park along Orchard Road.

It "offers visitors a glimpse into the history and heritage of the Istana through a specially curated range of heritage displays including state artefacts,artwork and state gifts received from foreign dignitaries by our past and present Presidents and Prime Ministers", said the Istana in a press release on Friday (July 21).

The new series of gifts replace eight previously-unveiled gifts in the original collection of 18 state gifts.

Here are the eight:

1. Ceremonial water kettle


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Gifted by Brunei Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah to President Tony Tan Keng Yam in February 2014. The sultan was in Singapore to visit the Singapore Air Show that year.

2. Golden chalice


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Gifted by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to President S R Nathan in November 2009. The Russian president's state visit was the first to Singapore by a Russian head of state.

3. Silver horse and buggy cart


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Gifted by Malta President Agatha Barbara to President Wee Kim Wee in February 1986. The Malta president was on a five-day state visit to Singapore.

4. Patung kepeng (Old coin statue)


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Gifted by Indonesian minister of tourism and creative economy Mari Elka Pangestu, to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in 2013.

5. Cast-iron figurine


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Gifted by Burkina Faso Prime Minister Beyon Luc Adolphe Tiao, Prime Minister of Burkina Faso to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in August 2014. Mr Tiao was in Singapore for the third Africa Singapore Business Forum.

6. Oval silver container


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Gifted by Egypt Prime Minister Kamal El-Ganzoury to Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong in April 1997. Dr El-Ganzoury's official trip was the first to Singapore by an Egyptian prime minister.

7. Sterling cigarette box


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Gifted by Jordan King Hussein ibn Talal to Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew in September 1983. The king was paying a private visit to Singapore with Queen Noor Al-Hussein, as guests of President Devan Nair.

8. Yerba maté tea cup and bombilla straw


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Gifted by Chile President Eduardo Frei Ruiz−Tagle to Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong in October 1998. Mr Goh was on his first official visit to Chile. The Chilean president had visited Singapore two years earlier, in 1996.