Singapore

PM Lee's meeting with Trump next week a chance to strengthen ties

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's meeting with US President Donald Trump next week offers both leaders an opportunity to understand each other better, and build on an already solid relationship, analysts said.

The US enjoys a trade surplus of US$9.1 billion (S$12 billion) in goods and US$9.7 billion in services with Singapore.

Mr Lee's Oct 21-26 official working visit also comes as Singapore is poised to be Asean chair and Mr Trump prepares to make his first trip to Asia next month.

"Singapore's position as a regional voice is amplified while occupying the Asean chair," Ms Shannon Hayden, associate director of the Southeast Asia Programme at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, said in an e-mail.

"Ensuring clear US-Singapore communications during the coming year will be essential, particularly during discussions on North Korea, the South China Sea, and trade," she added.

Mr Lee's visit will offer a perspective from a friendly region on the role and opportunities for the US.

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