12 November 2016
The election of Mr Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States earlier this week has sent ripples around the world — and while it is much too early to tell if President Trump will be a mirror image of Candidate Trump, these are nervous times for Singapore.
As a candidate, Mr Trump’s campaign rhetoric, insults and behaviour left many aghast. His vows to build a wall to keep Mexicans out, to get tough with China, and force allies to pay more to benefit from the American security umbrella raised many an eyebrow, and led to much hand-wringing.
Now that he is the leader of the free world, there is much expectation that, as is the well-established pattern of politics, there will be some dialling back of the fire and brimstone as he gets down to the business of governing.
… “When Trump takes office, he is going to have a lot of things to worry about. Ruffling feathers with small countries like Singapore doesn’t seem to be part of that,” said Assistant Professor Dr Evan Resnick, who coordinates RSIS’ U.S. Programme. The US regularly maintains a trade surplus of over US$10 billion with Singapore.
Apart from Singapore, Brunei is the only other Association of Southeast Asian Nations member which has a trade surplus with the US, noted Mr Harry Sa, research analyst of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies’ (RSIS) United States Programme.
… Nevertheless, RSIS security expert Kumar Ramakrishna said that Mr Trump’s commitment to boost defence spending and strengthen the US military “could in fact have a stabilising effect” on the region. “A lot depends on what he actually does once in power,” he said.
GPO / IDSS / NSSP / RSIS / Online / Print
Last updated on 14/11/2016