On November 19, 2004, Chinese President Hu Jintao met with Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in Santiago, the capital of Chile.
When talking about bilateral ties, Hu pointed out that the China-Singapore friendship is a result of careful cultivation by leaderships of the two countries and the common treasure shared by the two peoples, therefore it is worth cherishing with double efforts. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties 14 years ago, bilateral ties have developed rapidly and achieved remarkable results. The smooth development of China-Singapore ties not only brings tangible benefits to the two peoples, but also promotes peace, stability and development of Asia. Both Chinese and Singaporean new leaderships should firmly grasp the general direction of bilateral ties and try to push for their sound and steady development based on the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence.
Regarding the Taiwan issue, Hu Jintao appreciated the Singaporean government for reaffirming time and again its stance of adhering to the one-China policy and opposing ''Taiwan independence''. He noted that given Singapore's such stance, especially its sincere wish from the overall perspective of safeguarding the friendship between the two peoples, we would like to make efforts to put bilateral ties into the track of sustainable and sound development. He Pointed out that the Taiwan issue involves China's core interests, therefore it must be properly handled without hurting the feelings of the 1.3 billion Chinese people and without damaging the overall situation of bilateral ties. China's sovereignty and core interests must be respected which is the general prospective and basic principle,
As for bilateral economic and trade ties, China and Singapore are each other's important economic and trade cooperative partners. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties, bilateral economic and trade cooperation has scored obvious results with the trade volume increasing by nearly 10 times. In recent years, both sides have conducted cooperation and scored good benefits in high and new tech development, China's western development, rejuvenation of old industrial bases in the northeast part and other key areas as well as "going global" jointly by businesses of the two countries. We would like to work along with Singapore to jointly push for the development of China-Singapore economic and trade cooperation and benefit the two peoples in the spirit of mutual benefit.
Lee indicated that he realizes his visit to Taiwan in July exerts impact upon and brings about difficulties to China-Singapore ties. He said the basic stance of the Singaporean government is adherence to the one-China policy. This is a stance that has been upheld for a long period of time and still remains unchanged. Singapore's stance of opposing "Taiwan independence" is unequivocal. He said Singapore-China cooperation has borne fruits, but there are still potentials yet to be developed. Singapore hopes to continuously consolidate and develop relations with China.
(Information from Ministry of Foreign Affairs, PRC )