JOINT STATEMENT OF THE FIRST SESSION OF THE HIGH-LEVEL RUSSIA-SINGAPORE INTER-GOVERNMENTAL COMMISSION BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENT OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION AND THE GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE
The Commission was co-chaired by Deputy Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation - Chief of Staff of the Government of the Russian Federation, Sergey Sobyanin and Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong of the Government of the Republic of Singapore. The meeting was held in an atmosphere of cordiality, friendliness and mutual understanding.
The Parties welcomed the successful launch of the Commission, which arose fr om the visit of H.E. Mr Dmitry Medvedev, President of the Russian Federation, to the Republic of Singapore in November 2009. They endorsed the aim of the Commission to explore and promote broad-based cooperation in various fields that include economics, science and technology, foreign policy, cultural and other areas. The Commission has fostered greater high-level dialogue between political leaders of both sides, furthered bilateral cooperation, and facilitated bilateral trade and investment, as well as mutually beneficial projects.
The Parties expressed satisfaction with the development of Russia-Singapore relations, in particular the growth in bilateral trade in recent years, and highlighted the potential for more economic cooperation and business linkages. In this regard, the successful conclusion of the bilateral Agreement on the Promotion and Reciprocal Protection of Investments would promote greater investment flows between the two countries. The Parties recognized the importance of developing and improving mutually beneficial cooperation in the field of information communications technology (ICT). In this regard, the successful conclusion of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on ICT Collaboration would enable closer cooperation for the planning and implementation of joint ICT projects involving both public organisations and private companies fr om Russia and Singapore. The Parties undertook to expedite the completion of their necessary internal procedures for the approval and signing of other bilateral agreements under consideration.
The Parties also discussed and agreed on other areas of cooperation, as outlined below.
Cooperation in Trade and Investment
The Parties noted the strong cooperation under the Memorandum of Understanding on Economic Cooperation in Special Economic Zones between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Singapore signed in 2006. Extensive exchanges of experience have taken place, including the training of over 100 Russian officials in Singapore in areas ranging from master planning, industrial park management, tourism and ports. The Parties encouraged such useful exchanges to continue.
The Russian Party welcomed the participation of Singapore companies in the projects that are implemented within the framework of the Russian state support fund for modernization projects that is being created.
The Parties agreed to co-operate in Russia's preparations for the APEC summit in 2012.
The Parties highlighted the benefits of cooperation, including in the investment sphere, in building and modernising Russian airports such as those in Moscow and Vladivostok.
The Russian Party has expressed its interest in Singapore's experience and participation in the consultancy and master planning of the Special Economic Zones on the territory of Russia including in the Russian Far East, for example the Russkiy Island Tourist-Recreational SEZ.
The Parties have come up with a proposal to the Federal Financial Markets Service of Russia (FFMS) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to discuss the possibility of signing a Memorandum of Understanding. MAS looks forward to increased cooperation with the FFMS. With the globalisation of capital markets, closer cooperation between securities regulators is important for maintaining the integrity of markets and safeguarding investors' interest in Singapore and Russia.
The Parties noted that the development of relations through chambers of commerce and industry and other entrepreneurial associations of Russia and Singapore would contribute to trade and economic co-operation in respect to the expansion of exchange of business delegations, participation of the Russian and Singapore entrepreneurs and companies in exhibitions, seminars, symposiums and other events in both countries, identification of the most prospective areas for trade and economic collaboration, realisation of joint projects, especially those in the sphere of trade, investment and innovations.
The Parties emphasized the importance of the annual Russia-Singapore Business Forum (RSBF) held in Singapore as a key platform to foster greater business awareness and bilateral business flows, and expressed strong government support for its continued success.
The proposed establishment of a bilateral Russia-Singapore Business Council (RSBC) is expected to boost business cooperation. As a next step to develop a mutually beneficial and sustainable business platform, Singapore Business Federation (SBF) seeks the collaboration and support from its Russian counterparts to establish a viable roadmap with clear objectives and outcomes before formalising the partnership.
Both Parties expressed their support for a joint venture between Russian and Singapore aviation-related companies for the provision of ground handling services at Sheremetyevo Airport in Moscow.
The Parties have expressed their interest in the development of transport and logistics linkages which will facilitate cargo flow through Russian transport corridors.
Cooperation in industry
The Parties supported further cooperation in the field of shipbuilding, including the development of the shipbuilding project in the Primorski Krai that is being implemented by the Far East shipbuilding centre in cooperation with a Singapore shipyard.
The Russian Party expressed its readiness to facilitate deliveries of the new multi-purpose helicopter "Ka-32A11BC" to the interested organisations in Singapore.
Cooperation in the Fields of Science, Education, Personnel Training, and Medicine
The Parties agreed to encourage education cooperation, including cooperation and the establishment of partnership relations with the major state higher educational institutions.
The Parties have marked the presence of favourable conditions for further development of cooperation in the field of science and technology. In this regard, they have supported the prompt signing of bilateral Agreement on Scientific and Technical Co-operation. It was noted that both Parties will endeavour to strive for the early conclusion of this Agreement, including the Annex on Intellectual Rights Protection.
The Parties agreed to task the concerned bodies of the two countries to explore all proposals for developing bilateral cooperation at all levels of education, including technical education in particular through training in Russia.
The Parties have expressed their interest in the development of cooperation in the fields of telecommunications and high technologies, realisation of joint projects on techno parks consultancy and master planning in Russia, creation of business centres and business incubators, aimed at supporting innovative projects.
The Singapore Party has expressed its interest in the master planning of the innovation centre "Skolkovo". The Russian Party expressed its interest in involving Singapore companies working in the IT and pharmaceutical sectors and participating in the innovation centre "Skolkovo" and proposed organising a visit of a Singapore delegation to Russia.
The Parties noted the necessity of the development of cooperation in the field of healthcare, including in the provision of the high-tech medical services to citizens and in coordinating activities in developing, introducing and replicating high-tech medical services. The Russian Party is ready to consider the possibility of providing high-tech medical services in the Russian clinics on a contractual basis.
The Russian Party expressed its interest for the Singapore Party to render assistance in master planning to the State Nuclear Energy Corporation Rosatom and the Joint-Stock Financial Corporation "Sistema" in the Techno Park in Sarov and the creation and operation of such zones.
The Russian Party expressed its interest in cooperating with the Singapore Party in the professional development of civil servants through various platforms, including but not limited to, training courses, staff exchanges, joint seminars, exchange of publications and specialised periodicals published by each party.
Cooperation in the Field of Information Technologies
The Commission noted that the Parties are interested in the enhancement of cooperation in the ICT sector, in particular, in such areas as creation of technoparks in hi-tech sector and sharing experience in e-government implementation.
The Commission welcomed signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation and IDA International.
There is also an intention for the Republic of Tatarstan to collaborate with IDA International for Universiade 2013.
The Parties are ready to further discuss other projects and the means for its implementation together with the companies from Russia and Singapore.
Cooperation in the Field of Energy
The Parties agreed to render support in the development of business relations in the field of oil and gas, in particular, for the "Gazprom" Group's initiatives in the Singapore market and in the Asia-Pacific region on the whole.
The Parties noted with satisfaction the development of cooperation between the JSC "Lukoil" and the Singapore companies in the field of oil and oil products supply.
The Parties noted the potential for cooperation in the field of energy efficient technologies and Research & Development in clean energy and will encourage collaboration between both countries.
Cooperation in the Field of Culture and Art
The Parties emphasise, that the Russia-Singapore cultural cooperation plays an important role in the scope of bilateral relations between the countries.
The Parties agreed to explore exchanges of artists and arts institutions in visual, performing and literary arts as well as joint exhibitions and exchanges between its museums and arts organisations.
Cooperation in the Field of Tourism
The Parties noted the potential for the development of tourism and the value in the cooperation of tourism promotion in both countries.
The Parties agreed to continue the work in the following spheres of cooperation wh ere appropriate:
- exchange of statistical and other information in the field of tourism;
- exchange of experience in training of personnel in sphere of tourism;
- exchange of information on new investment projects in the sector of tourism;
- assistance for Russian and Singapore tourist organisations during international tourist exhibitions and other events held under support of national tourist administrations.
The Parties identified the lead agencies and organisations of both countries to work out Road Maps for the development of the Russia-Singapore cooperation in the medium-term perspective till 2014 in the fields of trade and investment (Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Trade and Industry of the Republic of Singapore), science and technology, education (Ministry of Science and Education of the Russian Federation and Ministry of Education and National Research Foundation of the Republic of Singapore) and communications (Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation and Ministry of Information, Communications and the Arts of the Republic of Singapore) and arts and culture (Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation and Ministry of Information, Communications and the Arts of the Republic of Singapore).
The Parties recommended the organisations mentioned above to continue work on the formation of expert groups, whose task would be the assessment of mutual potential and elaboration of action plans in certain fields of work.
On the Agenda, Time and Venue of the Second Session of the Commission
The Parties expressed their satisfaction with the outcome of the inaugural session of the Commission and agreed to hold the second session in the Russian Federation in 2011. The specific dates and venue of the second session of the Commission will be agreed upon through the diplomatic channels.
SINGAPORE AND RUSSIA SIGN
INVESTMENT PROMOTION AND PROTECTION AGREEMENT
Singapore and Russia signed an Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement/Bilateral Investment Treaty (IPPA) today. The Agreement was signed by Minister of State for Trade & Industry and Manpower, Lee Yi Shyan and Russian Deputy Minister for Economic Development, Andrey Slepnev. The signing took place at the sidelines of the inaugural Russia-Singapore Intergovernmental Commission meeting.
The IPPA will further strengthen bilateral economic relations between the two countries. This agreement will help to promote bilateral investment flow, as it puts in place a framework wh ere investors from both nations can be assured of protection when investing in the other country.
Singapore's economic ties with Russia have been growing. Between 2007 and 2009, bilateral trade more than doubled from S$1.88 billion to S$4.0 billion. Russia is now our 27th largest trading partner, up from 35th position in 2007. Singapore's stock of direct investments abroad (DIA) in Russia stood at S$58 million in 2008. Russia's stock of FDI in Singapore is estimated at S$50 million in 2008.
The key features of the IPPA include: (i) non-discriminatory, fair and equitable treatment for Singapore investors and investments in Russia, and vice versa; (ii) prompt, adequate and effective compensation in the event of expropriation; (iii) guarantee of free transfers of capital, returns, proceeds and other payments; and (iv) access to international arbitral tribunals in the event of any investor to state disputes.