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Date [ 2014-05-15, 09:23 ]

Business delegation forges closer ties

Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Lee Yi Shyan met with H.R.H Prince Khalid Bin Bandar Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the Governor of Riyadh Province.

(Singapore=Koreanpress) Benjamin Kim =  Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry and NationalDevelopment, Lee Yi Shyan visited Muscat, Oman, Riyadh andJeddah in Saudi Arabia with a business delegation from May 3 – 7, 2014, topromote greater economic engagement between the countries.

During the visit, Lee was the Guest of Honour at the GulfCooperation Council - Singapore Free Trade Agreement (GSFTA) OutreachSeminars, co-organised by the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) and therespective chambers of commerce at all three cities.

The GSFTA Outreach Seminars aimed to share and highlight the economic opportunities arising from the GSFTA with the Omani and Saudibusiness communities. Each seminar was also a platform for Omani andSaudi businessmen to network with the Singapore business delegation.

While in Riyadh, Lee co-chaired the 1st Meeting of the GSFTA JointCommittee, which was set up to ensure the smooth implementation of theGSFTA, with H.E. Dr Hamad Al-Bazai, Coordinator-General of GulfCooperation Council (GCC) FTA Negotiations, GCC Secretariat at Riyadh.

Singapore is the first non-Middle East country to have a Free Trade

Agreement (FTA) with the GCC, comprising six countries in the Middle East –Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The GSFTA entered into force on September 1, 2013 and will be fullyimplemented by 2018. It will further boost the close economic ties betweenSingapore and Saudi Arabia as well as other GCC countries.

Highlighting the close bilateral ties between Singapore and GCCcountries such as Saudi Arabia and Oman, Lee said, “The GSFTA signifiesthe strong bilateral and economic ties between Singapore and the six GCCcountries. Already, there are many Singapore and GCC companies actively pursuing opportunities and partnerships with each other. The GSFTA will leadto increased trade and investments over time, creating new jobs in theprocess.”

 In Oman, Lee met with top-ranking Omani officials, including H.E.Ahmad Al-Dheeb, the Undersecretary of Commerce and Industry, and the Co-chairof the Singapore-Oman Joint Committee, as well as H.E. Nassir Al-Jashmir, the Undersecretary of Finance.

 In Saudi Arabia, Lee called on his counterpart, H.E. Dr Tawfiq Al-Rabiah, Minister of Commerce and Industry and H.E. Dr Ibrahim Al-Assaf,Saudi Minister of Finance.  Lee was also received by H.R.H Prince KhalidBin Bandar Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the Governor of Riyadh Province, and withH.R.H. Prince Mishaal bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Governor ofMakkah Province.

abc@koreanpress.net

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