Singapore welcomes US assurance that AUKUS supports ASEAN centrality: PM

Wednesday, 2021-10-27 11:31:58
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Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the virtual ASEAN-US Summit on October 26. (Photo: AFP/VNA)
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NDO/VNA - Singapore welcomes the US's assurance that its recent trilateral defence pact with Australia and the United Kingdom (AUKUS) will support ASEAN centrality and contribute to regional peace and stability, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong told the virtual ASEAN-US Summit on October 26.

He also welcomed the US's announcement of US$102 million in new initiatives to expand its partnership with ASEAN, with the funds going into health, climate, economic and education programmes.

PM Lee noted that the US was ASEAN’s largest source of foreign direct investment last year, with investments amounting to nearly US$35 billion.

The US has also delivered over 30 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to the region, contributed US$500,000 to an ASEAN pandemic response fund, and established the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention's South-east Asia regional office in Hanoi.

He suggested ASEAN and the US expand partnership to non-traditional domains, including digital infrastructure, cyber security and climate change.

With the bloc’s digital economy projected to reach US$200 billion by 2025, the time is ripe for a technological revolution, with promising opportunities for both US and regional companies to work together to ride the wave, Lee stressed.