Singapore has Duty to Speak Up on Key Issues

Singapore has a responsibility to highlight important issues concerning it, deal with them, and push its position on them; especially so when Singapore’s security, safety or fundamental interests regarding its position in the world – such as the rule of international law and the peaceful resolution of disputes – are at stake, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

Even though as a small country, Singapore has to take the world as it is, it also has to protect its interests and do the best for itself in the world, shared Mr Lee.

“These two are complementary, they are not contradictory. We have to be aware of the realities, but at the same time that does not mean surrendering ourselves to our fates”, he added.

Mr Lee explained that Singapore can contribute by having “something to bring to the table” and working with other countries towards a common cause, whether with other small and medium-sized countries in the Global Governance Group (3G), or with big countries in the G-20.

At the G-20 summit in Hamburg last weekend, Mr Lee called on leaders of the world’s major economies to stay committed to strengthening multilateral trade and redistribute its benefits more equally. He also urged small countries to band together to make their collective voices heard, and achieve their shared interests.

Reflecting on the summit, Mr Lee expressed that it was productive and fruitful from Singapore’s perspective. “We got our point of view across, explained what we needed to say on trade, on digitalisation, on jobs”, he added.

Source: “PM: Singapore has responsibility to speak up on important issues ” (The Straits Times, 12 July 2017)

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