Singapore-Australia pact: 7 key areas of cooperation

The crowd watching performers at the Singapore Day event held in Sydney, Australia, on Oct 12, 2013.
The crowd watching performers at the Singapore Day event held in Sydney, Australia, on Oct 12, 2013.PHOTO: MINDEF

SINGAPORE - The latest agreement between Singapore and Australia is set to elevate ties to a new level, allowing both countries to expand their cooperation in the areas of trade, security, education and the arts and culture. Here is a look at the outcomes:

Trade and Economics

- Updated trade rules in the Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement in goods, services and investment to reflect business needs, reduce red tape and increase trade between Australia and Singapore

- More access for businesses to bid for government procurement contracts in both markets

- Greater transparency to support business people seeking to move between both markets

- Start negotiations for mutual recognition of professional qualifications, with priority given to engineers and accountants

- More opportunities for Singapore investors in Australia with higher acquisition thresholds

 

Innovation and Science

- Companies can tap on a $50 million matching fund over five years

- Singapore chosen as an innovation "landing pad" to support high tech Australian start-ups and link them up with entrepreneur and capital networks, as well as, industry value chains, to drive business development and growth. Singapore is one of five cities chosen

 

Defence

- More military training areas and facilities for Singapore troops to access over a period of 25 years

- Elevate the joint combat training drill, codenamed Trident, to a signature bilateral exercise

- Share more intelligence and information in areas such as counter-terrorism

- Hold an inaugural security forum in Australia later this year to discuss regional security issues

 
 

Education

- Recognise law degrees from more Australian and Singapore universities

- Recognise more medical and allied health qualifications including post graduate medical degree from the University of Queensland and Australian National University and 15 additional allied health qualifications in Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Speech Therapy

Travel

- Multi-year visas for Singaporeans

Youths

- Up to 500 youths on each side can work and study for up to 12 months to enhance their holiday and cultural experience

- Introduce a pilot internship programme to give 100 Singaporeans studying in Australia more internship opportunities with leading Australian companies

Arts and Culture

- Australia-Singapore Arts Group to increase collaboration between artists, arts groups and cultural institutions on both sides

- $5 million fund over five years to support Singapore artists, arts groups and performers to profile their works in Australia.