Celebrating the 30th anniversary of Singapore-China diplomatic relations
Speech by Ms Low Yen Ling, Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth & Trade and Industry, at the opening of 'The Baoli Era: Treasure from the Tang Shipwreck Collection' special exhibition at Shanghai Museum
14 September 2020
上海市文化和旅游局局长, 文物局局长 于秀芬女士
- The Tang Shipwreck Collection is an excellent demonstration of the long-standing historical links that have connected civilisations along the Maritime Silk Road since the ninth century. The commodities, people and ideas which flowed along this historic trade route gave rise to rich regional links, cultural diversity and creativity.
a. Southeast Asia played a key role in this vibrant maritime network of trade and exchange. It is likely that the Tang ship had travelled here and perhaps stopped at Singapore and other Southeast Asian ports, establishing connections with the region’s cultures, traditions and trade along the way. To this day, Southeast Asia remains a place of vibrant commerce, and an integral part of the international maritime trade.
- The rich history of the Maritime Silk Road resonates strongly with Singapore. Even from the early days, the island was a cosmopolitan hub for cross-cultural exchanges of goods, people and ideas. The Tang Shipwreck Collection not only forms a core part of ACM’s permanent collection, but has also travelled to international museums around the world to tell this story of globalisation and interconnectedness.
- The exhibition is testament to Singapore and China’s commitment in maintaining vibrant cultural exchanges and collaborations during these unprecedented times. It is even more significant as we celebrate the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Singapore and China this year.
a. Throughout the three decades, our countries have enjoyed mutually-beneficial exchanges across many different domains. This demonstrates the breadth and depth of our bilateral relationship. We have consistently strengthened our partnerships in areas of mutual interest through platforms such as the Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation, or JCBC. In fact, it was at the 14th and 15th JCBCs that the Singapore and China JCBC co-chairs – Singapore Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean in 2018, and Singapore Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat in 2019, together with Chinese Vice-Premier Han Zheng – affirmed their support for this exhibition.
b. Senior Minister Teo was also the Guest of Honour at a webinar presented by ACM in August 2020. This involved international scholars, curators and archaeologists who exchanged ideas and perspectives on China and the Maritime Silk Road. I am confident that this exhibition, and Shanghai Museum’s upcoming symposium in November, will further contribute to fruitful exchanges on this topic.
c. As we commemorate our 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations, we look forward to more cultural collaborations between Singapore and China. Such cooperation will enrich the lives of both our peoples, and provide a firm foundation of people-to-people ties for the growth of our bilateral relationship.
- Let us continue to deepen our ties, and build on the strong foundations of friendship and cooperation for our peoples. I am confident that our Singapore-China ties will continue to flourish, and our countries will be drawn closer through the close links we share.
- Once again, I would like to extend my heartiest congratulations to Shanghai Museum on the opening of this exhibition. I hope you will enjoy this fascinating collection.
Last updated on 14 September 2020