Minister of Defence Ron Mark will travel to Singapore today to conduct a counterpart visit and to co-chair the third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers' Meeting with his counterpart, Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen.
"Singapore is one of our most important defence partners in the region, and our bilateral defence and security cooperation forms a key aspect of the Enhanced Partnership, which our two Prime Ministers launched in May", says Mr Mark.
While in Singapore, the Minister will visit key military facilities such as Dieppe Barracks, Changi Naval Base and Sembawang Air Force Base, to gain a better understanding of the Singapore Armed Forces. He is also scheduled to call on Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, and Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat.
Minister Mark will then travel to Bangkok, Thailand to attend the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Defence Ministers' Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus). This comprises Defence Ministers from ASEAN in addition to the eight 'Plus' countries: Australia, China, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Russia, New Zealand and the United States.
"The ADMM-Plus is an excellent forum for discussing multilateral defence engagement, regional security issues and practical defence cooperation", says Mr Mark.
"I am also looking forward to holding bilateral meetings with my counterparts from across the Indo-Pacific region".