The 41st Singapore Lecture “Turkey-Singapore Relations: Building a Smart Strategic Partnership” by H.E. Binali Yıldırım, Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey

Titled “Turkey-Singapore Relations: Building a Smart Strategic Partnership”, the talk touched on the cooperation between Turkey, Singapore and ASEAN . 

His Excellency Binali Yıldırım, Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey delivered the 41st Singapore Lecture. (Source: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute) 

Monday, 21 August 2017 – ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute hosted the 41st Singapore Lecture given by His Excellency Binali Yıldırım, Prime Minister of The Republic of Turkey. The Lecture was the highlight of His Excellency’s first visit to East Asia as Prime Minister.

He was delivering the 41st Singapore Lecture, chaired by DPM and Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies Tharman Shanmugaratnam.

Deputy Prime Minister & Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies Tharman Shanmugaratnam delivering his opening address (Source: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute)

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım focused his presentation on major deliverables this year for three levels of the Singapore-Turkey relationship. At the bilateral level, the two countries have ratified a ‘new generation’ free trade agreement, Turkey’s first one in Southeast Asia, that will come into operation by October. This year, Turkey became a Sectoral Dialogue Partner of ASEAN with the Prime Minister hoping this will be deepened next year when Singapore assumes the chairmanship of ASEAN. Finally, Singapore and Turkey are major connectivity hubs for trade and exchange between East Asia and Europe. Turkey is committed to supporting China’s Belt and Road Initiative both on land and sea through its Middle Corridor plan linking Europe to Central Asia, Afghanistan and China.

At the end of the lecture, Professor Wang Gungwu, Chairman of the ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute Board of Trustees, presented Turkey Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım with a pottery piece crafted by one of Singapore’s foremost potters, Mr Chua Soo Kim, entitled “The Clear Sky”. The Clear Sky is part of his Stringing Glaze series and is inspired by the artist’s hope to enjoy green environment and blue sky all the time. 

Some of the VIPs at the 41st Singapore Lecture. (Source: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute)

Close to 450 people, including diplomats, government officials, business leaders, academics, students and members of the media, attended the lecture. 

Mr Zainul Abidin Rasheed asking a question during the Q&A session. (Source: ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute)

The Singapore Lecture series is an intellectual highlight designed for world statesmen and leaders to present their insights on relevant issues of regional significance to a wider audience in Singapore. The most recent Singapore lectures were delivered by French President François Hollande, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, Chinese President Xi Jinping, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.