Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III met with Dr. Ng Eng Hen, Minister for Defence for the Republic of Singapore, at the Pentagon today to discuss ways to broaden bilateral defense cooperation. This meeting is their second face-to-face meeting, following Secretary Austin’s visit to Singapore in July.
The Secretary and Minister affirmed today the enduring nature of the U.S.-Singapore defense partnership, as well as their shared vision of building an even stronger foundation for future cooperation. Secretary Austin reiterated the U.S. commitment to continued joint training and growing bilateral force posture opportunities with Singapore, while collaboratively addressing security challenges in the Indo-Pacific. He expressed appreciation for Singapore’s support during the noncombatant evacuation operation in Afghanistan, where Singapore provided a transport aircraft that helped facilitate the safe resettlement of over 2,000 evacuees.
The Secretary and Minister agreed to advance a number of initiatives that will ensure the bilateral partnership is postured to address new and emerging challenges. These include:
- Working with Singapore to support regional recovery from the global COVID-19 pandemic;
- Continuing to advance the establishment of Singapore’s Enhanced Fighter Training Detachment on Anderson Air Force Base in Guam;
- Facilitating high-end combined training opportunities in the air and maritime domain;
- Strengthening bilateral cyber security cooperation following the recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the U.S. and Singapore; and,
- Enhancing combined force posture operations in the Indo-Pacific, including through rotational U.S. air and naval activities in Singapore.
The Secretary and Minister closed the meeting by reiterating their commitment to supporting the security, stability, and prosperity of the Indo-Pacific, and to building an even more capable cooperation that is based on a shared foundation of common interests and values.