Tue, Oct 08, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Singapore PM, Siew met privately at APEC

Staff writer, with CNA in BALI, Indonesia

Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (李顯龍) met with former vice president Vincent Siew (蕭萬長) on the sidelines of the APEC leaders’ summit that opened in Bali, Indonesia, yesterday.

Siew is attending the summit on behalf of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九).

Lee said in a Facebook post on Saturday night that he was pleased to have had tea with Siew earlier in the day.

“Caught up over tea with our old friends Vincent Siew and his wife, Susan, from Taiwan on the sidelines of APEC,” Lee wrote in a photograph caption under the name “LHL.”

The photo of the smiling group shows Lee and Siew sitting next to each other, with their wives seated in front of them.

The Facebook update has since attracted more than 1,800 likes, more than 70 shares and dozens of comments.

Among the comments was one by Henry Koh, who expressed gratitude in Chinese for Taiwan’s assistance to Singapore in its early years as an independent city-state.

In another comment, Chua Aik Hong Desmond wrote that he loves Taiwan as it is a clean and safe travel destination and its people are very friendly.

“Visited Taiwan thrice, and going again in next January. I love Taiwan because the place is clean, safe and the people there are very friendly and helpful. Good place for vacation, highly recommended,” he wrote.

Council for Economic Planning and Development Minister Kuan Chung-ming (管中閔), who is serving as the spokesman for the Taiwanese delegation to the Bali summit, said Siew’s meeting with Lee was a private one and involved no formal discussions.

Taiwan has been in talks with Singapore on an economic partnership agreement.

Minister of Economic Affairs Chang Chia-juch (張家祝) said at the end of the annual APEC ministerial meeting on Saturday last week that Taiwan could sign an economic partnership agreement with Singapore by the end of the year.

Singapore has already completed its review of the articles in the planned agreement and has offered its opinions to Taiwan, Chang said.

As soon as Taiwan has finished its review, the two sides can sign agreement, Chang said.

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