Sun, 01 Oct 2023

Singapore PM warns of dangers of increasing US-China tensions

Robert Besser
13 Aug 2022, 03:08 GMT+10

SINGAPORE: Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong warned this week of the possible miscalculations over tensions in Taiwan, stressing that due to deep suspicion and limited engagement between the U.S. and China, these tensions were unlikely to ease soon.

During a televised address on the city-state's national day this week, Lee said, "Singapore would be buffeted by that intense rivalry and tension in the region, which should prepare for a future less peaceful and stable than now."

"Around us, a storm is gathering. U.S.-China relations are worsening, with intractable issues, deep suspicions, and limited engagement. This is unlikely to improve anytime soon. Furthermore, miscalculations or mishaps can easily make things much worse," he added.

Economic challenges were more immediate and Singapore's outlook has "clouded considerably," Lee said, adding that in the coming months the government will launch more initiatives to help people cope with rising prices.

In recent months, inflation in the city-state has reached record highs, leading the central bank to tighten its monetary policy on 14th July.

To help mitigate increased living costs, from inflation and rising energy prices, the Singaporean government earlier announced the launch of a support package for lower-income groups.

Singapore's 5.5 million people must plan far ahead and transform industry, upgrade skills and raise productivity, Lee stressed, adding, "The world is not likely to return anytime soon to the low inflation levels and interest rates that we have enjoyed in recent decades."

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