Taylor Swift Eras tour
Taylor Swift Image Credit: Instagram/Taylor Swift

Singapore struck a deal ensuring Taylor Swift played the city-state but nowhere else in Southeast Asia, the country’s prime minister said Tuesday while defending the secretive arrangement.

Pop icon Swift is halfway through a run of six sold-out shows in Singapore, the only city in Southeast Asia to feature in her blockbuster Eras world tour.

The star’s schedule has sparked controversy in the music-mad region, with Singapore accused of throwing cash at Swift to stop her from appearing in other locations.

Taylor Swift performs as part of the
Taylor Swift performs as part of the "Eras Tour" at the Tokyo Dome, on Feb. 7, 2024, in Tokyo. Image Credit: AP

The issue unexpectedly reared its head at the ASEAN-Australia summit in Melbourne — a sober affair typically more preoccupied with matters of security and economic growth.

“Our agencies negotiated an arrangement with her to come to Singapore and perform, and to make Singapore her only stop in Southeast Asia,” Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said at a joint press conference with his Australian counterpart.

“A deal was reached. And so it has turned out to be a very successful arrangement. I don’t see that as being unfriendly.”

Singapore has repeatedly declined to detail the financial terms of the deal.

After Singapore, Swift’s Eras Tour will head to Europe.