ASEAN Defence ministers to meet on sidelines of Singapore Airshow 2018

singapore air show 2016
A Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) F-15SG fighter aircraft performs a maneuver as it flies past an RSAF AH-64D Apache helicopter during a preview of the Singapore Airshow at Changi exhibition center in Singapore February 14, 2016.

Singapore's Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) said on Saturday that the defence ministers from the Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN) will be visiting the country on Monday to attend the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) Retreat.

The defence ministers and senior officials from all 10 member states, as well as the secretary-general of ASEAN will attend the retreat on Tuesday. The event will be held in conjunction with the Singapore Airshow 2018.

Channel NewsAsia reported that Singapore's Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen will also host visits by the Chinese Minister of National Defense General Chang Wanquan and other ASEAN defence ministers. General Chang will be in the city state for his introductory visit from Feb 4 to 8.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will host a lunch for the defence ministers at the Singapore Airshow. This year marks Singapore's chairmanship of ASEAN, the ADMM and the ADMM-Plus, which includes other countries like the United States, New Zealand, South Korea, Russia, India, China and Japan.

Singapore will also coordinate the Asean-China dialogue relations from 2015 to 2018. MINDEF said that the formal ADMM and the ADMM-Plus meetings will be held in October. Since the establishment of the ADMM in 2006, this is the second time when Singapore is chairing the ADMM.

A cover article in January's edition of Pioneer magazine published by Mindef said: "As ADMM chair, Singapore plans to strengthen cooperation and build resilience among the ASEAN member states and eight "Plus" countries."

"In particular, Singapore will focus on three key thrusts: promoting regional counter-terrorism collaboration; growing a collective capability to defend against chemical, biological and radiological threats; and propagating the use of practical confidence-building measures in the aviation and maritime domains," the article added.

Recently, the six Asean members launched an intelligence pact aimed at combating Islamist militants and improving co-operation on security threats.

This article was first published on February 3, 2018