PM Lee Hsien Loong to attend G-20 summit in Germany

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President Donald Trump in Germany during his working visit from July 6-11.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President Donald Trump in Germany during his working visit from July 6-11.PHOTOS: ST FILE,AFP, EPA

BERLIN - Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will make a working visit to Germany from Thursday (July 6) to July 11, where he will attend the Group of 20 (G-20) Leaders' Summit.

He will meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on Thursday, and also meet US President Donald Trump and several world leaders on the sidelines of the annual meeting in Hamburg on Friday and Saturday.

PM Lee will also visit Munich from July 9 to 11.

A statement from the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) on Wednesday said the visit will reaffirm Singapore's excellent ties with Germany, a close and like-minded partner.

PM Lee will be hosted to lunch by Chancellor Merkel in Berlin.

"They will discuss ways to further strengthen bilateral cooperation, as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest," the statement said.

In Hamburg, PM Lee will participate in the G-20 Leaders' Summit discussions on global economic growth, trade and finance, and digitalisation and jobs, as well as other global challenges such as climate change and public health.

He will also have bilateral meetings with world leaders on the sidelines of the summit, including with Mr Trump. It will be his first face-to-face meeting with Mr Trump. They have previously spoken on the phone.

There are three aims on the agenda at this year's summit - building resilience by deepening cooperation on trade and making taxation fairer, improving sustainability in areas such as climate change and health, and assuming responsibility by addressing issues such as migration, terrorism and corruption.

Singapore is not a member of the G-20, which comprises the world's 20 largest developed and developing economies. They make up about two-thirds of the world population, more than 80 per cent of the global economy and 75 per cent of world trade.

However, Singapore has been invited to participate in G-20 summits as a representative of the Global Governance Group (3G), an informal group of 30 small and medium-sized countries which aims to promote greater transparency and inclusivity in the G-20 process.

This will be the seventh time Singapore is participating at the summit. The other invited countries are Spain, Norway, the Netherlands, Guinea, Vietnam and Senegal.

PM Lee will head to Munich after the summit, where he will have roundtable discussions with business leaders from top German multinational corporations, Mittelstand (small and medium-sized companies), and world market leaders, said the PMO statement.

He will be guest-of-honour at the Certificate Presentation Ceremony for the newly-appointed Singapore Economic Ambassadors for the Mittelstand, and at the launch of electronics giant Siemens' Singapore Digitalisation Hub. There will be parallel events in Germany and the Republic to mark the hub's opening in Singapore.

PM Lee will also attend a National Day reception with the Singapore community in Germany.

He will be accompanied by Mrs Lee, Foreign Affairs Minister Vivian Balakrishnan and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat, as well as senior officials from the Prime Minister's Office, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Finance, the Economic Development Board and Monetary Authority of Singapore.

During his absence, Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean will be Acting Prime Minister.