TPP, security issues top Biden's meeting with Singapore's PM

2013-07-26 14:19:12 GMT2013-07-26 22:19:12(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

SINGAPORE, July 26 (Xinhua) -- Singapore's relations with the United States are wide ranging and excellent shape, Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said Friday after meeting with visiting U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.

Lee, together with Biden, reaffirmed the bilateral relationship between the two countries, especially in security relations and trade ties.

Lee said Singapore believed that the United States has a " constructive role" to play in the Asia Pacific region, and one of the "manifestation" of the U.S. engagement in the region is the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

He said Singapore welcomes Japan's participation in the TPP as one of the four founders of the agreement.

Japan recently joined the TPP negotiations in Malaysia earlier this week. Biden also expressed the U.S. support to Japan's participation. He said the twelve countries in the negotiation table now account for 40 percent of the world'd GDP.

"TPP is not only an ambition, it's doable," Biden added, promising to get the TPP negotiations done in 2013.

As for security partnership, Biden said the two countries need to deepen counter proliferation cooperation and other emerging threats, as well as maintain momentum their military to military relationship.

Biden is on his three-day visit in Singapore from late Thursday to Saturday. He also called on President Tony Tan, and former Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew on Firday.

He is scheduled to visit the Pratt & Whitney aircraft engine overhaul facility here on Saturday. He will also visit the U.S. littoral combat ship (LCS) USS Freedom at the Changi Naval Base.

The LCS was deployed in April on "rotational basis". Biden said it is the evident of the nature of strong relationship between the two countries.

Biden had an close-door meeting with visiting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe here on Friday. The White House said the meeting was to "affirm the enduring strength of the U.S.-Japan alliance."

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