Singapore

President Halimah begins five-day visit to the Philippines

President Halimah Yacob is on a five-day state visit to the Philippines to mark the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

She landed in Manila yesterday to a ceremonial welcome with honour guards.

During the visit, she will call on and be hosted to a state banquet by President Rodrigo Duterte.

She will also deliver the opening remarks at the 14th Philippines-Singapore Business Council meeting and witness the opening of the Podium Office Tower, a joint project between Keppel Land and SM Group, a Philippine conglomerate. The project is a mixed-use building with retail and office spaces.

Madam Halimah will also visit a lifestyle and food pop-up organised by Enterprise Singapore. The pop-up aims to help Singapore companies with their internationalisation plans.

Singapore, with investments of $560 million, was the Philippines' top Asean investor last year, and second largest foreign investor after China.

The Philippines was also Singapore's 14th largest trading partner last year.

Bilateral trade increased 18.6 per cent year on year from 2017 to last year, amounting to $21.2 billion.

Madam Halimah will be hosted to dinner by Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio in Davao City and visit the Philippine Eagle Centre there, a conservation site for the critically endangered Philippine eagles.

She will also engage in a dialogue with youth, to share with them Singapore's experience in fostering interfaith harmony, at the Ateneo de Davao University's Al Qalam Institute for Islamic Identities and Dialogue in South-east Asia.

Madam Halimah will be accompanied by her husband Mr Mohamed Abdullah Alhabshee; Ms Indranee Rajah, Minister in the Prime Minister's Office and Second Minister for Finance and Education; Dr Koh Poh Koon, Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry; and Members of Parliament Liang Eng Hwa, Sitoh Yih Pin and Cheng Li Hui, along with officials from the President's Office, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Trade and Industry and Ministry of Finance.

Team Singapore