Vivian on first official visit to Bhutan till Wednesday

Singapore's Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan's four-day visit will be the first official visit to Bhutan by a Singapore foreign minister since diplomatic relations were established in 2002.
Singapore's Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan's four-day visit will be the first official visit to Bhutan by a Singapore foreign minister since diplomatic relations were established in 2002. PHOTO: ST FILE

Singapore's Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan is on a four-day visit to Bhutan that started yesterday, at the invitation of his counterpart, Mr Damcho Dorji.

The visit, till Wednesday, will be the first official visit to Bhutan by a Singapore foreign minister since diplomatic relations were established in 2002, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday.

Dr Balakrishnan, accompanied by ministry officials, will be given an audience with Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, and will call on Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay.

They will also meet Foreign Minister Damcho Dorji, Minister for Labour and Human Resources Ngeema Sangay Tshempo, Minister for Economic Affairs Leki Dorji, and Minister for Home and Cultural Affairs Dawa Gyaltshen.

Additionally, Dr Balakrishnan and Minister Ngeema Sangay Tshempo will witness the signing of a memorandum of understanding on collaboration in the field of technical and vocational education and training.

It is between Singapore's Institute of Technical Education Education Services and the Bhutanese Ministry of Labour and Human Resources.

Dr Balakrishnan will also announce a training programme by Singapore Health Services (SingHealth) for Bhutanese healthcare professionals in emergency medicine and a clinical attachment for ear, nose and throat doctors.

He will also take part in a ceremony that will see books from Singapore's National Library Board donated to Bhutan's National Library and Archives.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 15, 2017, with the headline 'Vivian on first official visit to Bhutan till Wednesday'. Print Edition | Subscribe