US military bases in Singapore
The United States defense Minister mark Esper and the head of the military Department of Singapore, N. Hen, signed an agreement granting American warships and aircraft the right to use the country's airfields and naval bases for another 15 years-until 2035, the Straits Times newspaper writes. The previous version of the agreement has been in effect since 1990.
In his speech, Minister Hen praised the bilateral defense ties, which were significantly strengthened the day before with the signing of a new agreement that gives the Singapore air force the opportunity to use the Pacific territory of the States-the airfields on GUAM-for training F-15 fighter pilots.
The strong, mutually beneficial relationship between the US, the world's largest economy and military power, and Singapore, a tiny city-state, is unique - said the defense Minister of the Asian country.
He pointed out that the us military more often than other countries use airfields and naval bases in Singapore. In turn, more than 1,000 Singaporean military personnel are trained in the United States each year.
When asked about the influence of the United States in the region, the Minister said:
Most of the ASEAN countries, and Singapore in the first place, note that the widespread presence of the United States in the region should continue in the future.
In April 2019, Singapore sent a request to the United States to sell four fighter jets with the possibility of supplying eight more aircraft in the future. In January, the US state Department approved the deal. Ellen Lord, the us Deputy Secretary of defense for procurement and support, was expected at the Singapore air show, but she canceled her visit because of the coronavirus outbreak.
- The F-35 program has reached the stage of economic efficiency. The cost of purchasing and operating the F-35B is comparable to the cost of our existing F-15SG, " said Calvin Hong. His words are quoted by Defense News.
The General noted that in the field of logistics of the new aircraft, "there are still problems". At the same time, planes with a shortened takeoff and vertical landing will save the country's air force from having to maintain long runways in good condition - especially in light of the fact that Singapore plans to close one of its three air bases.