Minister of State Chan Chun Sing and Senior Minister of State Josephine Teo were met with cold shoulders by their Chinese hosts in their four-day visit to China yesterday (Sep 1). There was no mention of getting Singapore involved with the mega One Belt One Road project, and the two were patronised with projects in two far flung underdeveloped provinces, Gansu and Guizhou.
Gansu is a north west province filled with villages and Guizhou is a mountainous western province – both some 2,000 km away from the prosperous East China provinces of Shanghai and Beijing.
Earlier in the month several Singapore Ministers tried to woo China by repetitively praising China’s developments. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in his National Day Rally speech that he wants to emulate China by becoming a “cashless society” like them. Minister K Shanmugam followed up with more polishing calling China a “world leader” and their One Belt One Road project “the most ambitious in human history“.
On Wednesday (Aug 27), China invited Egypt, Kenya, Tajikistan, Mexico and Thailand as special select guests for the BRIC trade group. There were also no mention by China of adding Singapore into the One Belt One Road project or any into any other major trade project.