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Vivian Balakrishnan visits Brunei to reaffirm close ties, will also visit Malaysia and Indonesia, Singapore News & Top Stories

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SINGAPORE – Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan will visit Brunei on Monday March 22 to reaffirm the close and long-standing special relationship between Singapore and the country.

During his visit, Dr Balakrishnan will have an audience with Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei, Singapore’s Foreign Ministry (MFA) said in a statement on Monday.

He will also meet and be invited to a meal by Brunei’s second foreign minister, Erywan Pehin Yusof.

The Foreign Ministry did not specify the purpose of the visit, but Indonesian President Joko Widodo called last week for a meeting of Southeast Asian leaders to discuss the Myanmar crisis.

Brunei is the current president of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean.

Dr Balakrishnan will be accompanied by officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and will also visit Malaysia and Indonesia after his trip to Brunei.

The Malaysian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Monday that Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Tun Hussein will welcome Dr Balakrishnan for a two-day working visit from Tuesday to Wednesday.

He added that the visit was part of continued efforts to strengthen the existing close ties between Malaysia and Singapore.

Hishammuddin and Dr Balakrishnan are expected to discuss issues of common interest to the two countries in the context of bilateral cooperation, as well as regional and international issues, the statement said.

The two ministers “will also explore post-Covid-19 collaboration, including reciprocal vaccination certification, which will benefit both nations,” he added.

Dr Balakrishnan is also expected to challenge Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin and hold meetings with several other ministers, including Senior Minister of International Trade and Industry Azmin Ali, Senior Minister of Defense Ismail SabriYaakob and Minister of Science, of Technology and Innovation Khairy Jamaluddin.

“The visit will be conducted in full compliance with health and safety protocols set by the Ministry of Health and in accordance with standard operating procedures approved by the National Security Council,” the statement added.



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