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PM Lee to attend G-20 summit

Buenos Aires

PRIME Minister Lee Hsien Loong will make his first working visit to Buenos Aires in Argentina from Wednesday to Saturday, during which he will attend the Group of 20 (G-20) Leaders' Summit. The visit, made at the invitation of Argentinian President Mauricio Macri, will focus on strengthening economic cooperation between the two countries.

Mr Lee will be hosted to breakfast by Mr Macri on Thursday, before meeting Buenos Aires Senator Esteban Bullrich and the city's mayor Horacio Rodriguez Larreta.

The G-20 summit begins on Friday amid a tit-for-tat trade war between the United States and China, whose leaders are expected to meet during the summit weekend.

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At the summit, Mr Lee will take part in discussions on the theme "Building consensus for fair and sustainable development", which the group has adopted under Argentina's presidency this year, said the Prime Minister's Office in a statement on Tuesday.

Mr Lee will also have bilateral meetings with leaders of other countries on the sidelines of the summit.

Singapore is not a member of the G-20, a group which comprises the world's 20 largest developed and developing economies. They make up about two-thirds of the world's population and three-quarters of world trade.

Singapore has been invited to this year's summit as a representative of Asean, which Singapore chaired this year.

It will also convey the views of the Global Governance Group (3G), an informal group of 30 small and medium countries that aims to promote greater transparency and inclusivity in the G-20 process.

Singapore has been invited to previous summits as a representative of 3G. Six other countries that have been invited to Argentina as well are Chile, Jamaica, the Netherlands, Rwanda, Senegal and Spain.

While in Argentina, Mr Lee will be accompanied by Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat, as well as senior officials from the PMO, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Finance.

Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean will be Acting Prime Minister from Tuesday to next Monday.