Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen and New Zealand Minister of Defence Ron Mark co-chaired the third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers' Meeting (SNZDMM) at the Ministry of Defence earlier today.
Building on the Singapore-New Zealand Enhanced Partnership signed earlier this year, Dr Ng and Minister Mark reaffirmed the good progress of bilateral defence cooperation. Both Ministers also agreed to strengthen cooperation under the ambit of the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) and the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting (ADMM)-Plus, and discussed key international and regional security issues of mutual concern, such as countering terrorism and the importance of a rules-based international order.
Following the meeting, both Ministers released a Joint Statement which reaffirmed the strong relationship between both defence establishments. Dr Ng also expressed appreciation for Minister Mark's strong support for the Singapore Armed Forces' training in New Zealand.
Minister Mark, who is also on his introductory visit to Singapore from 13 to 16 November 2019, will visit Dieppe Barracks and the Information Fusion Centre in RSS Singapura-Changi Naval Base later this afternoon. On 15 November 2019, Minister Mark will call on Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat. He will also visit Sembawang Air Base to take a familiarisation flight on board a Republic of Singapore Air Force Super Puma helicopter.
Minister Mark's visit and the third SNZDMM underscore the close and long-standing relations between Singapore and New Zealand. Both armed forces have extensive interactions, including bilateral and multilateral exercises, cooperation in overseas peace-support missions, and professional exchanges. These interactions have enhanced the interoperability and people-to-people ties between the personnel of both armed forces.