Aquino to welcome in Malacanang Singaporean president

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Monday, March 31, 2014

PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III will meet Singaporean President Tony Tan Keng Yam who will be on a four-day state visit to the country this week, Malacanang announced on Monday.

Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda in a statement said the two heads of state would discuss matters of mutual interest to the Philippines and Singapore, including trade and investment, as well as the Filipino community in the Lion City when the Singaporean leader visits the country on April 2-5.

Like the other heads of state that visited the country recently, Tan’s itinerary would include a side trip to the areas devastated by super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) on top of his other activities.

Lacierda said Tan would hand over donations contributed by the people of Singapore to the partners of the Singapore Red Cross involved in rehabilitation projects in Yolanda-affected communities.

"He will also fly to Basey, Western Samar to present medical supplies to the Basey District Hospital, a joint rehabilitation project of the Singapore Red Cross and the International Committee of the Red Cross," he added.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in an earlier announcement said this would be Tan’s first state visit to the Philippines reciprocating President Aquino’s state visit to Singapore in March 2011.

Tan will be accompanied by his spouse, Mary Tan, and a delegation composed of the following: Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Grace Fu, who is also the Second Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, and the Second Minister for Foreign Affairs; Hawazi Daipi, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Manpower; and Members of Parliament Dr. Lam Pin Min and Mr. Vikram Nair.

Singapore was the Philippines' 4th largest trade partner in 2013, with total trade amounting to US$8.22 billion. It is also the sixth largest source of visitors to the Philippines, with 175,304 tourist arrivals in 2013. Singapore also hosts a 180,000-strong Filipino community. (SDR/Sunnex)

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