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CS continues visit to Singapore (with photos)
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     The Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Carrie Lam, continued her visit to Singapore today (August 1).

     Mrs Lam visited projects under the Housing & Development Board (HDB), including [email protected], an iconic public housing development with sky bridges and continuous sky gardens connecting every block, and units under the Silver Housing Bonus Scheme, which enables the elderly to cash in on their property and receive a cash bonus when moving from their existing larger HDB flats or private properties to smaller HDB flats.

     Mrs Lam then visited a Social Service Office. The Office provides community-based social assistance to the needy in the respective district, and identifies specific social needs in the neighbourhood.

     After the visit, Mrs Lam attended a lunch hosted by the Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for National Security and Minister for Home Affairs, Mr Teo Chee Hean. The lunch was followed by a courtesy call on the Chinese Ambassador to Singapore, Mr Duan Jielong.

     Mrs Lam then called on the Prime Minister, Mr Lee Hsien Loong. During the meeting, Mrs Lam and Mr Lee exchanged views on forging stronger economic ties between Hong Kong and Singapore, as well as with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as a whole. "We are pleased that ASEAN and Hong Kong have agreed to pursue an ASEAN-Hong Kong Free Trade Agreement. We believe that this Free Trade Agreement could serve as a building block for promoting further economic integration in the region, thereby inducing and facilitating more trade and investment, which shall in turn bring benefits to both Singapore and Hong Kong," Mrs Lam said.

     Negotiations between Hong Kong and ASEAN are expected to commence formally in early 2014.

     Mrs Lam then visited the Marina Bay Cruise Centre, which is a new cruise terminal that opened in 2012.

     In the evening, Mrs Lam attended a dinner hosted by Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, Second Minister for the Environment and Water Resources and Second Minister for Foreign Affairs Ms Grace Fu.

     Mrs Lam will continue her visit to Singapore tomorrow (August 2), meeting senior officials and speaking at a luncheon co-organised by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Singapore and the Singapore Institute of International Affairs.

Ends/Thursday, August 1, 2013
Issued at HKT 19:10

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