DPM Heng meets Hong Kong's Chief Executive John Lee as part of working visit

DPM Heng Swee Keat (left) meeting Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee at the latter's office on Aug 29, 2022. PHOTO: MCI

SINGAPORE - Singapore and Hong Kong have discussed ways to broaden cooperation and also work together to help promote growth in the region.

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat, writing on Facebook after meeting Hong Kong's new Chief Executive John Lee on Monday (Aug 29), said that as cities with international outlooks, they have very much in common.

"We share strong economic linkages, close ties between our peoples and many areas of cooperation," he added.

DPM Heng, who is on a working visit to Hong Kong from Aug 28 to 31, said both sides reaffirmed the good momentum of their longstanding partnership.

"Looking to the future, we discussed how Singapore and Hong Kong can further deepen cooperation in areas such as economic resilience and public health, and also how we can work together to contribute to regional growth and prosperity, and for the benefit of our peoples," he said.

Mr Heng, who met Mr Lee at the latter's office, is confident that the friendship between Singapore and Hong Kong will continue to grow during Mr Lee's term, and looks forward to welcoming him in the Republic soon.

Also present at the meeting were the Director of the Chief Executive's Office, Ms Carol Yip; Permanent Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Ms Eliza Lee; and the Consul-General of Singapore in Hong Kong, Mr Ong Siew Gay.

Mr Lee welcomed Mr Heng's visit to Hong Kong following his previous one in May 2019. He also thanked Mr Heng, who is also Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies, for attending the seventh Belt and Road Summit that will be held on Wednesday.

The theme of this year's summit is Heralding a New Chapter: Collaborate and Innovate. The event gathers senior government officials and business leaders from across countries to exchange insights on multilateral cooperation and promote business linkages.

Mr Lee said Hong Kong and Singapore have long enjoyed a close relationship. Trade between the two economies has grown steadily and Singapore has become Hong Kong's fourth-largest trading partner.

During the pandemic, the bilateral trade in 2021, which amounted to more than $483 billion, still recorded an increase of nearly 30 per cent compared with the 2020 figure.

"Hong Kong will explore more opportunities for exchanges and collaboration with Singapore in a wide range of areas including trade and investment, financial services, education, culture, innovation and technology. I hope that Hong Kong and Singapore will continue multi-faceted cooperation to strengthen our very close ties," he said.

Mr Heng is accompanied by his wife and officials from the Prime Minister's Office and Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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