[About this blog] Inspired by local soccer player Mike Lim during my rookie reporter days at Singapore Polytechnic, I set up this blog in August 2002. I feel that blogging is a novel platform to document interesting facets of my life and my thoughts on certain issues. [Email blogger] ephraim@singnet.com.sg

Sunday, February 17, 2008

[A Laotian Guest at the CC]
1. The Punggol CC Senior Citizens' Chinese New Year Dinner had an unexpected guest on Sunday evening. As the Laotion DPM and Foreign Minister Thonglun Sisoulith was in Singapore for a bilateral visit, I invited him for the dinner to give him a sense of how we live in Singapore. Halfway during dinner, I brought him to see one of our HDB apartments. Robert Sim had less than an hour's warning time, but responded splendidly. He, his wife and kids were charming hosts. The Laotian FM was quite astonished that a taxi driver could own such an apartment.



2. The senior citizens provided much of their own entertainment, singing and dancing. More than once, Minister Thonglun asked whether they were professionals. I felt so proud of them.

3. After years of war, Laos is now progressing nicely. Each time I visit Vientience, it looks better. Last year's growth rate was 7.5%. This year's is expected to reach 8%. But the base is low and the country will take years to catch up. During the Vietnam War, more American bombs fell on Laos than all the bombs that fell on Europe during the Second World War. We are helping where we can and run a training centre in Vientiene. We also train some of their officials in Singapore. In fact, Minister Thonglun himself spent 3 months at Nanyang Poly many years ago on an English course. He is a good friend.



外交部长杨荣文于榜鹅民众俱乐部乐龄执委会
新春晚宴上致词
2008年2月17日, 晚上8时

各位亲爱的朋友们、女士们、先生们

首先,祝大家新年快乐。

今晚, 我们很荣幸地邀请到一位特别嘉宾与我们共度新春佳节。他就是寮国副总理兼外交部长通伦·西苏里 (Thongloun Sisoulith) 阁下。他是新加坡的好朋友,目前正在我国进行官方访问。新寮两国双边关系密切。寮国的经济表现良好,去年经济成长率超过百分之七。

寮国和我国都是亚细安成员国,我们都致力于建立一个强大的亚细安,以便维持区域的和平与稳定,让人民继续享有经济发展的成果。

今晚,我非常高兴能和大家一起参加这个新春晚宴。新加坡人民很幸运。我们享有稳定、安全的环境,生活水平也比其他亚洲国家高。目前,我国的失业率很低,许多领域的人才都面临短缺。因此我们必须引进外国工人以填补空缺。但是,食物价格和油价的不断上涨也令人担心,政府对此非常关注。财政部长在星期五的财政预算案中公布了一系列的配套措施,以协助中低收入的国人度过难关。

我在此祝大家鼠年身体健康、万事如意。

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello!

Happy Chinese New Year!

Monday, February 18, 2008 11:27:00 pm

 

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