SINGAPORE - Singapore will enjoy stronger ties with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) under a new agreement.
In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the Joint Declaration on a Singapore-UAE Comprehensive Partnership, signed on Thursday (Feb 28), "represents a shared desire on both sides to elevate ties and deepen bilateral cooperation in mutually beneficial areas" such as trade and investment, defence and security, as well as sustainable development.
Witnessing the signing at Parliament House were Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
In a tweet, Sheikh Mohamed - who is also the Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces - said: "Our meeting with Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is a testament to the strength of our ties."
"Singapore's development model is a pioneering experience, and we seek to learn from it," he added.
Sheikh Mohamed is on an official visit to Singapore, his first since 2009, at the invitation of President Halimah Yacob.
Singapore and the UAE established diplomatic relations in 1985.
The UAE is Singapore's 16th-largest trading partner globally as well as its largest trading partner in the Middle East, with bilateral trade at $18.1 billion.
It is also the Republic's largest investment destination in the Middle East.
As of 2017, Singapore's stock investments in the UAE stood at $3 billion, while UAE investments into Singapore were at $3.6 billion.
Accompanied by a 15-member delegation of ministers and senior officials, Sheikh Mohamed arrived in Singapore on Wednesday evening from South Korea.
On Thursday morning, the Crown Prince received a ceremonial welcome at the Istana and paid a courtesy call on the President, who hosted him to an official lunch.
In a Facebook post, Madam Halimah said the two reaffirmed the longstanding ties between the two countries and had "a fruitful exchange of views on current developments in the Middle East and Asia".
"We also agreed on the need for religious tolerance and the importance of inter-faith harmony," she added.
On Twitter, Sheikh Mohamed said both were keen to strengthen bilateral ties between the two countries.
The Crown Prince also visited semiconductor firm Global Foundries, which is owned by Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Investment Company.
Three other agreements were also signed during the Crown Prince's visit here.
The Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources and the UAE's Ministry of Climate Change and Environment - which signed an agreement on environmental protection and climate change in 2017 - agreed to further cooperate in the area of sustainable consumption and production.
Singapore Garden City - a subsidiary of the National Parks Board - signed an agreement with the Abu Dhabi Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities, which will see the two collaborate in areas such as greenery and conservation research.
The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company - together with its subsidiary Borouge - signed an agreement with Nanyang Technological University for an endowment to the university's Centre of Excellence International Trading.