ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Further economic co-operation
These were announced at the 4th meeting of China-Singapore Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) co-chaired by visiting Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi and her Singapore counterpart Wong Kan Seng.
Both sides agreed to push forward the negotiations on free trade agreement (FTA) which started last year, as well as to strengthen cooperation in energy conservation and environment protection such as establishing an eco-city in China by using Singapore's sophisticated technologies in these fields.
During the meeting, Wu Yi welcomed Singapore's participation in China's regional development and opening up, and continue help China to train Chinese personnals.
They also agreed to further cooperation to explore the third country's market including making joint investment, as Singapore has a pool of talents who are familiar with international rules equipped with internationalized management ability and richly experienced in planning, management, financing and training.
Satisfied with the progress made by the JCBC over the past year, the two leaders said that the Council, as an important mechanism, has played an active role in promoting cooperation in terms of high-tech, Singapore's participation in China's regional development, the internationalization of Chinese enterprises, as well as the development of human resource.
On his part, Wong said that the Singapore government has been attaching great importance to its friendly and cooperative relationship with China and is willing to make bilateral relations closer, extend fields of cooperation and share common development with China in the context of globalization.
He stressed that China adheres to the peaceful development and will play a greater role in regional and international affairs.
After the meeting, the two leaders also witnessed the signing of five memorandums of understandings (MOUs) involving human resource, border health measures, urban environment and integrated utilization of urban water resources, as well as avoidance of double taxation agreement.
Singapore is now China's 7th largest trading partner while China is the 3rd biggest trading partner of Singapore. Bilateral trade volume increased by 23.2% over the previous year to US$40.85 billion in 2006. By the end of May this year, Singapore has actually invested US$31.04 billion in over16,000 projects in China and become China's no. 6 foreign direct investment (FDI) source.
Wu, who arrived here on July 9, is on a four-day visit to the city-state at Wong's invitation. Xinhua