12 August :India and Singapore signed a Bilateral Agreement, here today for the conduct of joint Army Training and Exercises in India. Defence Secretary Shri Vijay Singh signed the agreement on behalf of Government of India, while Mr Chiang Chie Foo, Permanent Secretary (Defence) was the signatory from the Singapore side.
The bilateral agreement is in furtherance to the agreement signed between the two Governments on Defence Cooperation on 13 October 2003 and seeks to provide facilities in India to the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) (Army) for the purpose of joint military training and exercises. The training and exercises involve both Armour and Artillery training/exercises, which would be carried out at Babina and Deolali ranges. Such exercises/training were conducted previously on the basis of an MoU between the two countries entered into in January, 2005, which was extended from time to time, the last extension being upto June 2008. Future joint training exercises would now be conducted under the provisions of this bilateral agreement.
The agreement provides for temporary detachment of SAF personnel for a maximum period of eight weeks, up to two times a year. However, small detachments not exceeding eight personnel from SAF may be allowed to stay with their equipment stationed in India.
Besides the bilateral agreement the associated Protocols on ‘Training’, ‘Administration & Logistics" and ‘Financial Arrangements’ were also signed between the two countries. The agreement comes into effect from today and shall remain in force initially for a period of five years.
Mr. Chiang Chie Foo later called on the Defence Minister Shri AK Antony, where matters of mutual interest pertaining to Defence were also discussed. He also met the Chief of Army Staff General Deepak Kapoor and Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Sureesh Mehta.