President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan today received Lee Hsien Loong, Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, in Abu Dhabi today. Image Credit: X

Abu Dhabi: President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan today received Lee Hsien Loong, Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, who is on an official visit to the UAE.

Upon the Singaporean Prime Minister’s arrival at Qasr Al Watan in Abu Dhabi, an official reception ceremony was accorded. Sheikh Mohamed escorted the Prime Minister of Singapore to the dais, where the national anthems of both the UAE and Singapore were played.

A 21-gun salute was fired, while a contingent of the honour guard stood in formation, extending a traditional welcome to mark his visit.

In attendance at the reception were Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi; Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Office of Development and Martyrs Families Affairs; Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan; Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoun Al Nahyan, Advisor for Special Affairs at the Ministry of Presidential Affairs.

Bilateral discussions

Later, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Lee Hsien Loong discussed the deep-rooted relations and comprehensive partnership between the two countries and explored avenues for its development to serve mutual interests. Additionally, they addressed a range of regional and international issues and developments of shared concern.

The Singaporean Prime Minister conveyed the greetings of Tharman Shanmugaratnam, President of Singapore, and his wishes for the continued progress and prosperity of the UAE. In return, His Highness the President underscored his aspiration that this visit would advance ties between the UAE and Singapore in all vital sectors aligned with the developmental priorities of both nations.

During the meeting, both sides reviewed cooperation and opportunities to develop relations, especially in the fields of economy, investment, education, and tourism, along with advanced technology, digital commerce, renewable energy, sustainability solutions, food security, and climate action, among other strategic sectors that contribute to creating new opportunities aligned with the comprehensive and sustainable developmental vision in both countries.

COP28 importance

The discussion also touched upon the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference (COP28), which the UAE is hosting later this year. The two sides noted the conference’s importance in generating sustainable solutions that signify a substantial shift in global climate action for the collective benefit of all people, reflecting both nations’ interest in environmental, climate, renewable energy, and sustainability matters.

Furthermore, the two sides discussed the need to promote the values of tolerance, coexistence, and dialogue, given their close link with regional and international peace and stability. The leaders agreed these values are a foundation for achieving progress, development, and sustainable prosperity for their peoples.

The UAE President emphasised the robust relations between the UAE and Singapore, pointing out that the UAE has a keen interest in Singapore’s developmental experience, which stands as a distinguished model of progress. His Highness stated that the two countries share many commonalities, as both are pioneering models of development, hubs of trade and finance, and champions of tolerance and coexistence with a special interest in education and investing in human capital while supporting global peace.

He also highlighted the UAE's determination to expand relations with Singapore, especially in vital sectors that serve development, including technology, energy, education, sustainability, trade, and investment, among others. He noted that the UAE is Singapore’s top trading partner in the Middle East and North Africa.

The Prime Minister of Singapore conveyed his appreciation to His Highness for the warm reception and His Highness' commitment to advancing relations between the two countries in a way that aligns with their joint vision of sustainable development and prosperity. He affirmed that UAE-Singapore relations are witnessing continued growth and development on all levels, especially in key development sectors, reflecting a shared keenness to strengthen ties.

The Singaporean Prime Minister penned a statement in the VIP guestbook, expressing his country's desire to enter a new stage in its relations with the UAE and his wishes for further progress and prosperity in the UAE.

Luncheon in honour of the visiting PM

The UAE President hosted a luncheon in honour of the Prime Minister of Singapore and the accompanying delegation.

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Lee Hsien Loong witnessed the exchange of memoranda of understanding and agreements between the two countries aimed at expanding cooperation in many areas, including education, environmental protection, climate action, green economy, carbon reduction solutions, artificial intelligence, digital governance, and smart cities, in addition to Halal certification, all of which serve the developmental priorities in both countries.

Exchanging the memoranda and agreements was Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of the Executive Affairs Authority and member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, and from the Singaporean side Dr. Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman, Minister at the Singaporean Prime Minister's Office and Second Minister for Education and Foreign Affairs.