Despite Recent Row, Singapore Remains a Key Partner for China

Despite Recent Row, Singapore Remains a Key Partner for China
Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong greets Chinese President Xi Jinping, Beijing, Nov. 9, 2014 (AP photo by Feng Li).

Last week, Hong Kong agreed to return nine armored vehicles to Singapore that had been seized in November while in transit from Taiwan, where they had been used in joint military exercises. The decision ends a diplomatic row that brought relations between China and Singapore to a low point. In an email interview, Lieke Bos, a project officer at the Royal United Services Institute, discusses Singapore’s ties with China.

WPR: What is the nature of relations between Singapore and China, and what are the main areas of cooperation?

Lieke Bos: Relations between China and Singapore have been relatively stable ever since diplomatic relations were established 25 years ago. Singapore has always followed the “one China” policy, explicitly mentions that Taiwan is part of China, and even now, in this row over the seizure of armored personal carriers, refuses to name Taiwan in any of its public statements.

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