President Halimah Yacob: Singapore, Turkmenistan can deepen cooperation

Turkmenistan President Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedow, accompanied by Singapore President Halimah Yacob, reviewing the guard of honour at the Istana yesterday. He left Singapore last night.
Turkmenistan President Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedow, accompanied by Singapore President Halimah Yacob, reviewing the guard of honour at the Istana yesterday. He left Singapore last night.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

Turkmenistan may have development experiences and a social make-up that are different from Singapore's, but there are areas where they can cooperate, said President Halimah Yacob, citing tourism, business and capacity building.

Pointing to the white marble architecture of its capital, Ashgabat, and the site of ancient Merv on the Silk Road, President Halimah said the Central Asian republic had immense potential to attract more visitors.

At a state banquet at the Istana for Turkmenistan President Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedow yesterday, Singapore's President also underlined the importance of ensuring the nine commercial agreements inked on Monday are implemented. "Success stories would help to generate more interest in our respective markets and more business interactions," she added.

One agreement between the Association of Banks in Singapore and the State Bank for Foreign Economic Affairs of Turkmenistan is to strengthen collaboration in banking and financial services.

The banquet rounded off the Turkmenistan leader's two-day state visit here, during which the two nations signed three pacts, one of which was on the avoidance of double taxation.

In his speech, President Berdimuhammedow said both countries shared a desire to strengthen peace and stability, and build a fair system of international ties. "Turkmenistan and Singapore are building their relations on the principles of equality, deep mutual respect, trust and openness. This will help us in achieving the results on all discussed items and find concrete solutions," he added.

Yesterday afternoon, he received a formal welcome ceremony at the Istana and paid President Halimah a courtesy call. He also met Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

 
 

Earlier in the day, he met Singapore business leaders and they discussed possible business opportunities in construction, logistics, chemical and other sectors.

Mr Berdimuhammedow also visited the Asian Civilisations Museum. He left Singapore last night.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 28, 2019, with the headline 'Halimah: Singapore, Turkmenistan can deepen cooperation'. Print Edition | Subscribe