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PM Lee Hsien Loong meets Chinese President Xi Jinping in Hamburg ahead of G-20 summit
[HAMBURG] Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong met Chinese President Xi Jinping in Hamburg on Thursday (July 6).
The meeting with Mr Xi at a hotel ahead of the Group of 20 (G-20) Leaders' Summit is Mr Lee's first since they met at the previous G-20 Summit in Hangzhou last September.
In a sign of warming ties, it comes soon after Chinese Premier Li Keqiang accepted PM Lee's invitation to visit Singapore.
PM Lee and Mr Xi "affirmed the substantive bilateral relationship, frequent high-level exchanges and good progress made in bilateral cooperation," said a statement from the Prime Minister's Office.
They discussed how Singapore could work with China to implement the Belt and Road Initiative, including the Chongqing Connectivity Initiative, which has achieved good progress in financial services and aviation connectivity.
The Belt and Road initiative will not only benefit regional countries economically but enhance China's contribution to globalisation and regional development, the statement said.
Mr Lee and Mr Xi agreed on the importance of promoting closer economic integration, through the speedy conclusion of the China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement upgrade.
Also discussed was the KL-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR) project, and Mr Lee welcomed China's interest.
Both leaders said they were committed to work together to promote closer cooperation between Asean and China. Singapore is the current coordinator of Asean-China dialogue relations, and will chair Asean next year.
They also discussed regional and global developments, and Mr Lee congratulated Mr Xi on the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China under "One Country, Two Systems".
THE STRAITS TIMES