SINGAPORE: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has touched down in the vibrant island state to usher in another chapter in “India’s Singapore Story,” which will be framed by technology, innovation, entrepreneurship and enhanced geostrategic connect amid the mutating geopolitical landscape in the Indo-Pacific region.
Mr Modi flew down to Singapore after a two-day visit to Indonesia on May 31. Rapturous crowds, waving Indian flags and chanting ‘Modi, Modi,” welcomed him outside the glitzy Fullerton Hotel in downtown Singapore.
The highlight of PM Modi’s visit to Singapore will be his keynote address at the Shangri La Dialogue, the premier forum on strategic and foreign policy issues, on June 1, in which he will enunciate India’s vision of the shifting Indo-Pacific region and its resolve to play the role of a net security provider in the region.
PM Modi will also hold wide-ranging talks with his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong, which is expected to upgrade and expand the canvas of India-Singapore strategic partnership. Underpinned by 5S, including (i) Scale up Trade & Investment; (ii) Speed up Connectivity; (iii) Smart Cities and Urban Rejuvenation; (iv)Skill development; and (v) State focus, India-Singapore relations are poised to move onto a higher trajectory.
Forging a new template of India-Singapore partnership pivoted around TIS– Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship – will be high on PM Modi’s agenda. With this on mind, PM Modi will kick off his engagements in the island state with a visit to an exhibition of 30 innovation and start-up firms from India and Singapore where he will interact with a group of enablers and innovators. This exhibition at the glitzy Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre will showcase InSpreneur 2.0, in which over 500 companies will be displaying cutting-edge technologies which dovetail with socio-economic development agenda.
PM Modi will also address a mixed audience of business people and the Indian community in Singapore where his overarching message will be a variation of his Davos speech: “India is open for business; come and invest in India.” He will also hold a closed-door round table with about 25 top CEOs of Singapore, in which he is expected to seek fresh investment from Singaporean companies.
On the strategic side, the talks on June 1 will lead to enhanced defence partnership and cooperation in maritime security, which will be telescoped in his interaction with officers and sailors of an Indian naval ship on a visit to Changi Naval Base on June 2.
In November last year, India and Singapore signed a logistics agreement under which Singapore will provide its naval bases for refuelling and berthing of Indian ships and India will provide logistics support to Singapore include live firing drills in the Andaman.
- Manish Chand is Founder-CEO and Editor-in-Chief of India Writes Network (www.indiawrites.org) and India and World, a pioneering magazine focused on international affairs. He is CEO/Director of TGII Media Private Limited, an India-based media, publishing, research and consultancy company.
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