PM Lee Hsien Loong congratulates new Malaysian premier Ismail Sabri Yaakob, reaffirms deep ties between both nations

PM Lee made a telephone call to Mr Ismail and also wrote him a congratulatory letter. PHOTO: LEE HSIEN LOONG/FACEBOOK

SINGAPORE - Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Sunday (Aug 22) congratulated Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob on being sworn in as Malaysia's ninth prime minister.

PM Lee made a telephone call to Mr Ismail and wrote him a congratulatory letter. Mr Ismail became Malaysia's prime minister on Saturday.

During the phone call, both leaders reaffirmed Singapore and Malaysia's longstanding, deep and broad-ranging ties.

They are also looking forward to working closely together to confront shared challenges that include the Covid-19 pandemic, said the Foreign Affairs Ministry in a statement.

In his letter, PM Lee said he had every confidence that the relationship between the two countries would continue to flourish as they enjoy deep, warm and multi-faceted relations.

He wrote: "We share many common interests, and our people have familial ties across the border. Over the years, Singapore has cooperated closely with successive Malaysian governments to confront our shared challenges, including this pandemic."

PM Lee also said Mr Ismail has a wealth of experience in public service and the government, including helming many ministries before being appointed deputy prime minister and senior minister in earlier administrations.

"I am confident that Malaysia will continue to prosper under your leadership as prime minister," added PM Lee.

He wrote: "You have contributed significantly to strengthening bilateral cooperation, including co-chairing the Singapore-Malaysia Special Working Committee on Covid-19 to oversee the continued movement of people and goods across our borders."

"I have every confidence that our relationship will continue to flourish. I look forward to meeting you soon, and working with you to expand our cooperation for mutual benefit," he said.

Mr Ismail had co-chaired the committee with Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean to oversee the continued movement of people and goods across the borders.

PM Lee said he looks forward to working with Mr Ismail to expand both countries' cooperation for mutual benefit.

He also invited Mr Ismail to make an official visit to Singapore to discuss "how we can partner each other to take our friendship further".

PM Lee also said he and his wife, Ms Ho Ching, send their best wishes for Mr Ismail's good health and happiness, as well as for his wife, Datin Seri Muhaini Zainal Abidin.

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