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Shri Rajnath Singh, Honorable Defence Minister of India arrived Singapore on 18 Nov 2019 for a two day bilateral visit and the fourth edition of annual India – Singapore Defence Ministers’ Dialogue. During the visit the Indian Defence Minister held bilateral deliberations with Dr Ng Eng Hen, Minister for Defence,

Government of Singapore to review the progress of bilateral defence engagements and also discuss future areas of defence and security cooperation. The two Ministers are also expected to discuss a several multilateral defence cooperation issues and exchange views on regional security.

As part of the visit, the Indian Defence Minister visited various units of Singapore Armed Forces including the Sembawang Air Base and Changi Naval Base. Shri Rajnath Singh  paid his respects at the Indian National Army (INA) Marker at the Esplanade Park, the Mahatma Gandhi Plaque at Clifford Pier and the Kranji War Memorial. As part of community engagements, he  visited Little India including Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple and addressed a gathering of Indian community in a separate event.

India-Singapore bilateral dialogue architecture in the sphere of defence and security collaboration spans across the full spectrum from the annual dialogue at the Defence Ministers’ level and an annual Defence Policy Dialogue at the level of Permanent Secretaries and flows down to the functional levels through annual meetings of the Defence Working Group, Staff Talks between functional counterparts of Army, Navy and Air Force as well as amongst the Defence Industry Working Group and Defence Technology Steering Committee.

The Armed Forces of both countries had developed a very high level of interoperability through annual bilateral exercises between all three Services as well as their interactions in various multilateral military exercises. Over a period of time, formal bilateral agreements have evolved amongst multiple stakeholders such as the three Armed Forces and other agencies of defence eco-system such as Industry and R&D agencies as well as maritime information sharing and mutual logistics support.

This first visit of Shri Rajnath Singh to Singapore, in his capacity as Defence Minister, would contribute significantly towards further bolstering the strong and mature India-Singapore defence cooperation. With a very high level of mutual trust and confidence shared over last several decades, both countries are eager to explore further engagement in newer areas of defence and security collaboration. The quantum and scale of defence engagements between India and Singapore also auger well for the peace, stability and security in the wider Indo-Pacific region and this interaction at Ministerial level would be helpful in broadening these shared interests

Source:  Indian High Commission of Singapore’s Press Release

Photo Courtesy:  Indian High Commission of Singapore

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