Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited Singapore for the first time yesterday as part of Israel’s plans to build and strengthen its relations with Asia’s superpowers.
Netanyahu is the first Israeli Prime Minister to visit Singapore Photo Credit: Haim Tzach (GPO)/Channel 2 News
Director of the Israeli Foreign Ministry Yuval Rotem, who accompanied Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his official trip to Singapore, explained last night (Monday) the importance of this visit. Rotem emphasized the countries’ economic relations and said that the Singaporean government was particularly interested in meeting Netanyahu, who stressed that the Singaporeans’ openness about their relations with Israel is not something to be taken for granted.
Singapore only recently revealed for the first time its relationship with Israel, which was previously classified. Until last April, there had never been an official visit to Israel by a Singaporean Prime Minister and yesterday, for the first time ever, an Israeli Prime Minister visited the Asian country.
Rotem stated, “The fact that they’ve revealed our relations raises our relationship to a higher level and conveys to the world of finance a ‘green light’ to carry out much more activity with us than previously done.”
According to Rotem, Singapore’s Prime Minister also discussed the countries’ “security cooperation” at last night’s dinner with Netanyahu. Rotem explained that the visit proves that Singapore understands Israel’s relevance and significance within the international arena.
Rotem discussed Israel’s constant search for new markets and “new targets” with the “objective of creating jobs, increasing investment and strengthening the Israeli economy.” Rotem explained, “As Asia becomes the most important continent economically in the world, Singapore serves as a gateway for Israel. Singapore is the economic source for many Asian countries.”
The director said that the two countries have an even more robust cooperation and collaboration in technological research and development. He explained that they plan to strengthen their cooperation within developing countries together. Rotem added, “Singapore is just the start as the Prime Minister is due to arrive in China next month and the Indian Prime Minister is expected to visit Israel in July.”