Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had a successful meeting with his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong today. Both leaders discussed a range of issues, including co-operation in financial technology and regional economic integration.
PM Modi is on a two-day visit to Singapore to attend the East Asia Summit, an ASEAN-India informal meet, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) summit and hold meetings with various global leaders.
"Happy to have met PM Lee Hsien Loong in Singapore. We had fruitful talks on deeper India-Singapore friendship as well as how India-ASEAN relations contribute to peace and prosperity in the region," PM Modi tweeted on his meeting with his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong.
“PM Narendra Modi met with Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien Loong on the sidelines of East Asia Summit. Good exchange of views on cooperation in financial technology, enhanced connectivity and regional economic integration,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said in a tweet.
Modi started his day by addressing the Singapore Fintech Festival which is the world’s largest gathering of the fintech community attended by both industry leaders and smaller start-ups. Incidentally, Modi became the first world leader to address the festival which was launched in 2016 and is in its third edition.
“It is a great honour to be the first head of government to deliver the keynote address at the Singapore Fintech Festival. It is an acknowledgement of the financial revolution sweeping through India and transforming the lives of 1.3 billion people,” said PM Modi.
“India is witnessing an explosion of financial technology (fintech) innovation and enterprise. I say this to all the fintech companies and startups: India is your best destination,” he said.
During the programme, PM Modi also launched APIX, a banking technology designed to reach two billion people without bank accounts worldwide.
Earlier, Modi arrived in Singapore this morning and touched by the presence of Indian community who came in large numbers to welcome him braving the rain.
“Extremely touched by the affection of the Indian community in Singapore. Their warm welcome, so early in the morning amidst the rain, was touching. India's diaspora makes our nation very proud. They have succeeded all over the world, in a wide range of areas,” PM Modi tweeted.
Before leaving for Singapore, Modi said in New Delhi that his participation in the ASEAN-India and East Asia summits symbolised India's "continued commitment" to strengthen its engagement with ASEAN members and with the wider Indo-Pacific region.
Modi also said he was confident that his visit to Singapore would impart fresh momentum to New Delhi’s growing partnership with ASEAN and East Asia Summit nations..
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is a regional intergovernmental organisation comprising ten Southeast Asian countries, which promotes intergovernmental cooperation and facilitates economic, political, security, military, educational, and sociocultural integration among its members and other Asian states.
PM Modi will also attend the RCEP Summit to review the progress made on the negotiations to finalise the proposed free trade agreement. It is being negotiated amongst sixteen countries including ten ASEAN Member States and India, Australia, China, Japan, New Zealand and Republic of Korea.