SINGAPORE – RISING50 is an amalgamation of “RI” for the Republic of Indonesia and “SING” for Singapore, while the number 50 refers to the half century of warm and friendly bilateral ties they have enjoyed since 1967.
To mark the milestone, a series of activities was organised in Singapore on Thursday (Sept 7) around the theme of “Trusted Partners, RISING Together”:
“RISING Tree” planted by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and President Joko Widodo in the Learning Forest at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. The Sunda Oak tree is native to both Singapore and Indonesia.
Commemorative stamps and book launch
Stamps featuring coral reefs of both countries issued by SingPost and Pos Indonesia; and a RISING50 book launched by the Indonesian Embassy in Singapore.
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Fighter jets from the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) and their counterparts from the Tentara Nasional Indonesia-Angkatan Udara (TNI-AU) staged a combined fly-past. This included F-16s from the RSAF and TNI-AU flying together to form the number 50, in a historical first involving aircraft from the two air forces.
PM Lee and President Joko held a “four-eye” meeting to take stock of the bilateral relationship, as well as to discuss how the two countries can deepen cooperation.
Nine MOUs signed
The signing of four memoranda of understanding (MOUs) was witnessed by the two leaders. Three were on education cooperation between Singapore’s Ministry of Education and Indonesia’s Ministry of Education and Culture, Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education (MORTHE), and Ministry of Industry (on vocational education), and one between the Singapore Civil Defence Force and Indonesia’s National Disaster Management Authority.
The other five MOUs were signed in the presence of ministers from both sides. They comprised mainly agreements between MORTHE and educational institutions such as the National University of Singapore (NUS) School of Computing, Singapore Polytechnic and the Institute of Technical Education.
Other agreements covered student exchanges between the Singapore University of Technology and Design, Bandung Institute of Technology, and United in Diversity, as well as a liquefied natural gas (LNG) business deal between Pavilion Gas, Keppel Singmarine and Indonesian state energy firm Perusahaan Listrik Negara.
Both leaders also attended the Singapore-Indonesia Investment Forum held at the Marina Bay Cruise Centre, where they met members of the Indonesia-Singapore Business Council, which was set up on July 28 following discussions at last year’s Leaders’ Retreat.