Singapore: Praising India's naval and maritime policy, a top Singaporean diplomat on Tuesday said India will continue to play a positive role in maintaining peace and order in the world's oceans, including the disputed South China Sea.
"India is a rising power. And in time, India will achieve a status of great power," said Singapore Ambassador at Large, Tommy Koh, who co-chaired the 9th India-Singapore Strategic Dialogue held from 29 August to 30 August.
"We have looked at something new (during the dialogue)," he said, referring to the Indian maritime policy and its implication to Singapore and to member countries of the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean).
India's naval power will grow and demonstrate its strength, he said, adding that it is natural that in this progression, India's horizon expands from focusing exclusively on Indian Ocean to now focusing on the larger Asia Pacific.
"Singapore welcomes this enlargement of India's horizon," said Koh, at the dialogue's follow on seminar "India: A bright
spark in a gloomy world economy?".
"We are sure that India has played, continue to play and will play a positive role in maintaining peace and order in the world's oceans – not just Indian Ocean, the South China Sea and Pacific Ocean," he said.
"There were opportunities for India to advance its naval capability to help the Asean countries enhance their capacity, it can help in training, and it can help Asean countries in maintaining the rule of law and peace and order in the world’s oceans," he added.
Koh said the dialogue also took note of India's historic links with Myanmar and Iran.
India and Singapore, as strategic partners, can work together in looking for investment and partnership opportunities in Myanmar and Iran, he added.
"Singapore's call for India to build infrastructure and create the jobs do reforms in education governance and ease of doing business as well as improve exports," chairman of the Godrej & Boyce Manufacturing Co Ltd who attended the event said.
"A lot is being done but it is a complex issue in manufacturing," said Godrej.