A speech by The Duke of Cambridge at the Istana, Singapore
Published 11 September 2012
We are excited, and delighted to be here.
Thank you, President Tony Tan Keng Yam and Mrs Mary Tan for so generously hosting us on this, our first, visit to Singapore.
We are excited, and delighted to be here. This wonderful occasion is all the more memorable because our visit is undertaken on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen, in celebration of her Diamond Jubilee. Before we left London, my Grandmother told me how very warmly she remembers her three State Visits to this remarkable Country in 1972, 1989 and 2006; and she told me how much we would enjoy seeing Singapore, and meeting Singaporeans. How right she was. Mr. President, Her Majesty sends you, your wife, the Government, and all the people of Singapore, her very best wishes.
2012 has been a landmark year for the United Kingdom. The Diamond Jubilee has been a celebration of The Queen’s exceptional dedication over sixty years.
Her service has not just been to the peoples of her Realms, but to the whole Commonwealth Family, of which Singapore is such an important member. I should like to offer my particular thanks to all in Singapore for your contribution to The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust.
2012 has also been unforgettable for those in the United Kingdom because it has been the year in which we have played host to the Olympic and Paralympic Games. These have provided us with wonderful sporting events. They have also reminded us of the shared excitement and pleasure we can all feel when the nations of an often divided World come together to celebrate extraordinary feats of human achievement.
The United Kingdom’s journey to the Olympics started here in Singapore in 2005. It was then that the Games were awarded to London. So thank you for being very much part of our Olympic story. And let me take this chance to congratulate you on the achievements of your own athletes at the Games, particularly the Women’s Table Tennis Team who won two medals at this Olympics, a first for Singapore. Congratulations, too, to your inspirational Paralympians including Laurentia Tan whose bronze and silver medals in the dressage make her Singapore’s most successful Paralympian.
For Catherine and me this year will also be special for the privilege of making this trip on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen. We are fortunate indeed to be with you here, and to have the chance to see for ourselves the great Singapore success story. What you have done, and become, is admired around the World. And we are delighted that the relationship between the UK and Singapore is now as close as it has ever been. The high level visits in both directions, including yours Mr. President, to London earlier this year; the strong trade and investments links; the expanding scientific and educational ties; and our close defence cooperation, all make this a particularly close friendship and partnership. Catherine and I greatly look forward to learning much more, and seeing much more, during our stay here. Thank you for making it possible.
I would now ask you all to rise and to join me in a toast to The President of the Republic of Singapore, and to the people of Singapore.