Singapore enjoys strong and substantive relations with the People’s Republic of China (PRC), anchored by a steady flow of high-level visits, multifaceted cooperation, growing people-to-people exchanges, and robust economic ties. In 2015, Singapore and China celebrated the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations and released a Joint Statement that characterised bilateral relations as an “All-Round Cooperative Partnership Progressing with the Times”.
Since 2013, China has been Singapore’s largest trading partner, and Singapore has been China’s largest foreign investor. The China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (CSFTA), which entered into force in 2009, was the first comprehensive bilateral FTA that China had concluded with an Asian country. Both sides signed the Protocol to upgrade the CSFTA during Premier Li Keqiang’s Official Visit to Singapore in November 2018.
Singapore and China have established three Government-to-Government projects – (i) the China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park; (ii) the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City; and (iii) the China-Singapore (Chongqing) Demonstrative Initiative on Strategic Connectivity. Both sides are also working together on a state-level bilateral cooperation project – the China-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City – and several private sector-led, government-supported initiatives such as the Singapore-Sichuan Hi-Tech Innovation Park, the Nanjing Eco High-Tech Island and the Jilin Food Zone. At the provincial level, we have seven provincial business councils with Sichuan, Shandong, Liaoning, Zhejiang, Tianjin, Guangdong and Jiangsu. Since the mid-1990s, more than 55,000 Chinese officials have visited Singapore for various study visits and training programmes.
Beyond the traditional parameters, Singapore and China have also been collaborating in new areas such as the rule of law, social governance and finance.