Following is the text of a joint statement by the United States and Singapore issued on January 18, 2012, in Washington, D.C.
Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs Permanent Secretary Bilahari Kausikan and United States Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell met in Washington, D.C. on January 18, 2012 to co-chair the first United States-Singapore Strategic Partners Dialogue. The dialogue served to enhance further bilateral relations between the United States and Singapore and marked a new development in the countries’ strategic partnership. The co-chairs, in the spirit of equal partnership, mutual respect and desire to promote close cooperation, reviewed an already robust array of initiatives undertaken between the two countries and sought new areas to create and expand cooperation in bilateral, regional, and global matters of joint interest.
The co-chairs reviewed bilateral areas of engagement including security, defense, education, trade and environment. The co-chairs discussed recent developments in Southeast Asia, Northeast Asia and regional institutions such as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), East Asia Summit (EAS), ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), and Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). The two also reviewed regional initiatives including the Trans-Pacific Partnership where they renewed their commitment to complete a high standard, 21st Century agreement with the other participating countries. Both co-chairs expressed interest in establishing joint technical assistance training programs for developing countries including in the lower Mekong sub-region to help build capacity, narrow the development gap, and deepen regional integration. They affirmed the importance of freedom of navigation, and lawful, unimpeded commerce, respect for international law, and the peaceful settlement of disputes. The co-chairs had further dialogue on areas of global cooperation including Afghanistan and Iraq.
The co-chairs noted the constructive nature of the strategic dialogue and areas of immediate follow-up and preparation for the upcoming ministerial meeting between U.S. Secretary of State Clinton and Singapore Foreign Minister K. Shanmugam. The co-chairs discussed the upcoming Singapore Conference to be held in Washington, D.C. that will bring several of Singapore’s ministers to Washington including Foreign Minister K. Shanmugam, Minister of Education Heng Swee Keat and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, Second Minister of Trade and Industry and Second Minister for Home Affairs S. Iswaran. Both sides noted the robust level of high-level visits between the two countries. Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation Thomas Countryman visits Singapore January 19-20. Assistant Secretary of State for Political and Military Affairs Andrew Shapiro will visit the Singapore Air Show in February. U.S. Department of Energy Assistant Secretary David Sandalow will visit Singapore in February. The United States looks forward to sending a high level delegation to the Shangri-la Dialogue in Singapore this June. The United States welcomed the upcoming spring visits of Minister of Defense Ng Eng Hen and Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for National Security and Minister of Home Affairs Teo Chee Hean.