Singapore is a special and important neighbour friendly with China. The two countries are near each other geographically, share cultural and blood ties, and have common interests and long-standing bilateral ties.
Every Chinese visitor to Singapore is deeply impressed by its garden city, vibrant development and social order.
The Chinese government places great emphasis on developing friendly ties with Singapore. Leaders have maintained close contact and built good working and personal relationships since the exchanges between Mr Lee Kuan Yew and Mr Deng Xiaoping in the 1970s. Both sides have linked development strategy to the bilateral relationship to pave the way for cooperation in which we learn from each other and which is mutually beneficial.
In the 23 years since diplomatic ties were established, bilateral relations have developed rapidly, cooperation has continued to rise to new heights and shared interests have deepened increasingly.
Bilateral trade has grown 24-fold from US$2.8 billion to US$69.3 billion (S$85.9 billion). Visitor exchanges have increased 22-fold from 95,000 to 2.2 million. The number of joint projects is on the rise. The Suzhou Industrial Park and Tianjin Eco-City are role models, followed by the Guangzhou Knowledge City, Sichuan-Singapore Hi-tech Innovation Park and Jilin Food Zone. Like a tree with luxuriant foliage, our cooperation has borne fruits that benefit people from the two countries.
Bilateral ties are at a new starting point in history. Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong recently visited China, and met Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang. They reached a consensus on deepening cooperation in the new era, setting the direction for promoting bilateral relations.
China has attracted attention worldwide with its achievements in modernisation over 35 years of reform and opening up. With confidence, the Chinese are striving towards realising the China dream of a moderately well-off society and the Chinese renaissance.
China will persevere with deepening its reform and opening up. We will expand the market economy further and let society have more say. We will ease corporate controls, step up our efforts towards a fair and transparent market as well as promote fair competition and survival of the fittest for a vibrant market. We will be more active in opening up and learn from all aspects of human civilisation so that our opening up can be comprehensive in depth and scope.