President Halimah congratulates Xi Jinping on hosting Winter Olympics, welcomes signing of Giant Panda conservation MOU

Halimah and Xi also unveiled the name of a student hostel which was part of a charity project by the Singaporean community in China.

Faris Alfiq | February 06, 2022, 05:34 PM

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Singapore President Halimah Yacob congratulated Chinese President Xi Jinping on China's "successful hosting" of the Winter Olympic Games, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said in a statement on Feb. 6.

Halimah visited Beijing, China, from Feb. 3 to Feb. 6 to attend the Opening Ceremony of the Winter Olympic Games at the invitation of Xi.

Singapore, China should step up collaboration

During their meeting, Halimah and Xi agreed that both countries should work closely to continually upgrade bilateral relations.

According to the statement by MFA, the two leaders affirmed that Singapore and China should step up collaboration in existing areas of cooperation, including three Government-to-Government projects in Suzhou, Tianjin and Chongqing, which are "progressing well".

They also discussed the importance of strengthening people-to-people ties, and looked forward to the full resumption of air connectivity and people-to-people exchanges "when conditions permitted".

Halimah and Xi also welcomed greater cooperation in new areas such as the digital economy, the green economy and smart cities.

MOU on Giant Panda conservation and naming of Zhixinlou student hostel

Halimah and Xi welcomed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry and China's National Forestry and Grassland Administration (NGFA)

The MOU, on “Cooperation of Promoting Giant Panda Conservation”, will provide a framework for bilateral cooperation on Giant Panda conservation and research, said MFA in its statement.

Halimah and Xi also unveiled the name of a student hostel ("知新楼", Zhixinlou) that was built in Pengshui County, Chongqing.

The hostel was built as part of a charity project initiated by the Singaporean community in China, in conjunction with the 30th anniversary of Singapore-China diplomatic relations in 2020.

She noted that the hostel symbolised the strong friendship between the people of Singapore and China and the importance that both countries attached to education.

Halimah met Chinese Premier Li Keqiang

On Feb. 5, Halimah had a bilateral meeting with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, where she congratulated China on the successful Opening Ceremony of the Games.

She also expressed appreciation of the "unifying power" of the Olympics to bring together athletes from around the world to achieve sporting excellence and promote sportsmanship.

Both leaders affirmed the strong ties between Singapore and China, and welcomed the good momentum in economic cooperation, including the robust growth in trade and investment as well as cooperation in new areas such as the digital economy, green economy and sustainable development.

Halimah expressed Singapore's readiness to deepen bilateral cooperation and ensure that the relations remain substantive and forward-looking, as both countries work to secure post-pandemic recovery and a sustainable future.

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Top image via Xinhua News Agency