SINGAPORE - Australian army chief Lieutenant-General David Morrison has been conferred the Pingat Jasa Gemilang (Tentara), or the Meritorious Service Medal (Military) by President Tony Tan Keng Yam.
Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen presented the award to LTGEN Morrison on Tuesday.
Lt-Gen Morrison was awarded the medal in recognition of his significant contributions in strengthening the defence ties between the Australian Army and the Singapore Army. In a statement, Mindef said that he has been instrumental in supporting the Singapore Armed Forces' (SAF) training in Australia, including the conduct of the annual Exercise Wallaby at the Shoalwater Bay Training Area and the renewal of the Oakey Agreement in June 2012.
Mr Morrison was also recognised for promoting closer cooperation between the two armies through his support for the conduct of the annual bilateral armour exercise, Exercise Matilda. Under the army chief's leadership, the Australian Army provided strong support for the SAF's deployments in Afghanistan, Mindef added.
Lt-Gen Morrison said of his award: "I will wear it with pride, certain in the knowledge that Singapore and Australia will continue to work constructively and with purpose to ensure the prosperity of both our countries and the region."
The SAF and the ADF have a long history of military cooperation in the form of visits, professional exchanges, and the cross-attendance of courses.
Australia and Singapore also interact multilaterally under the ambit of the Five Power Defence Arrangements and the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting-Plus. These interactions have strengthened the close and longstanding defence relationship between the two countries.
Lt-Gen Morrison, who is in Singapore till September 18, has called on Dr Ng, Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant-General Ng Chee Meng, and Chief of Army Major-General Ravinder Singh.