Singapore hopes leaders in Malaysia will come to an agreement soon, says DPM Heng

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat noted that Malaysia is Singapore's closest neighbour and both countries have many joint projects in the works.
Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat noted that Malaysia is Singapore's closest neighbour and both countries have many joint projects in the works. ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Government is monitoring political developments across the Causeway closely, and it will respect the decision of the Malaysian leaders and work with the government of the day, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said on Tuesday (Feb 25).

Mr Heng was responding to a question from reporters on developments in Malaysia, following a visit to Parkroyal on Kitchener Road Hotel, and he noted that the situation in Malaysia was evolving rapidly.

"It is a domestic matter, and I hope that the various parties will come to some agreement expeditiously," he added.

On Monday, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad handed in his resignation after two days of political manoeuvres which culminated in the collapse of the ruling Pakatan Harapan coalition, leaving it with 92 lawmakers, short of the required majority of 112 in the 222-seat Parliament. Malaysia's King accepted Tun Dr Mahathir's resignation and appointed him interim Prime Minister.

In his remarks to reporters, Mr Heng noted that Malaysia is Singapore's closest neighbour and both countries have many joint projects in the works. These include the Singapore-Johor Baru Rapid Transit System and the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high-speed rail. The two countries have also set up a joint working group to step up cooperation in tackling the Covid-19 outbreak.

"We will respect the decision of the Malaysian leaders, and we will work with the government of the day," he said of ongoing developments in Malaysia.

"I very much hope that we can continue our cooperation quickly. We will work with the government of the day to advance the many areas of bilateral cooperation that we have embarked on, and particularly in dealing with the Covid-19 outbreak," he added.

Mr Heng, who is also Finance Minister, also hoped both neighbours can work together in dealing with the important changes going on in the global economy, to strengthen their economies.

 

"There are many areas of cooperation between Malaysia and Singapore that we can pursue, that we must pursue to strengthen one another, as well as to to work together in Asean to maintain the unity and centrality of Asean," he added.