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Prime Minister Fiala opened a business forum in Singapore and met with top constitutional officials

Singapore was the third stop on the Asia tour of Prime Minister Petr Fiala, who held talks with President Halimah Yacob, Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin and his counterpart Lee Hsien Loong. The Prime Minister also opened the Czech-Singaporean Business Forum and visited the Singapore Investment Fund GIC.

The main topic of Petr Fiala's meeting with the highest representatives of Singapore was the development of cooperation between the two countries.

"We discussed economic cooperation, but we also talked about the international political situation, the importance of the alliance between the EU and ASEAN countries and the role of Czechia. We talked about the dangers and risks arising both from the Russian aggression in Ukraine and the danger posed by the deterioration of relations between China and the US," the Prime Minister said.

The Prime Minister also discussed with Singapore's top officials the development of economic cooperation, cybersecurity, as well as cooperation in science, research and innovation and, last but not least, cooperation in the development of artificial intelligence.

"There is also great potential in the development of defence-industrial cooperation. I can give one example here. COLT, now owned by Česká Zbrojovka, has been a long-term supplier to the Singaporean army and is now trying to modernise 20,000 of its weapons. The company plans to participate in the upcoming tender for rifles for the Singaporean police. We also discussed the possibility of re-establishing direct air links between Prague and Singapore," the Prime Minister added.

Singapore is an important partner for the Czech Republic in the Indo-Pacific region and is also Czechia's largest export destination in Southeast Asia. Trade between Czechia and Singapore reached nearly 850 million USD in 2022. USD 850 million, while Czech exports amounted to almost 509 million USD. Czech companies export mainly electrical equipment and appliances, oil filters and optical and telephone equipment to Singapore. On the other hand, data processing machines, integrated circuits and other electronic components, as well as natural rubber, resins and telecommunications equipment are imported from Singapore.

In the island city-state, the Prime Minister visited the investment fund GIC, which has already invested over CZK 100 billion in two projects in the country. It owns the largest logistics parks P3 and also has a 30 per cent stake in CETIN.

"GIC is one of the largest sovereign wealth funds in the world, it manages about 16 trillion crowns, which is about 7 Czech governmnet budgets and it is interesting for us that GIC wants to invest in Czechia We have discussed the possibilities of further investments and cooperation on other projects in the field of digitalisation or high-speed internet with the representatives of this fund," said Petr Fiala.

Petr Fiala also opened a Czech-Singaporean business forum on the island, organised by the Czech Chamber of Commerce. "It was very successful and the fact that almost 200 businessmen from both countries gathered at the event shows the interest in cooperation with Czech companies and it also shows the potential for cooperation at the business level in the future," the Prime Minister added.

The official visit to Singapore continues Prime Minister Petro Fiala's ten-day tour of Asia. He has already visited the Philippines and Indonesia. In the next few days, the Prime Minister will visit Vietnam, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

Source: website of the Office of the Prime Minister