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New ASEAN cyber-security and information centre to be set up in Singapore

A new ‘Cybersecurity and Information Centre of Excellence' will be set up in Singapore to facilitate information sharing and capacity building among the defence establishments of member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) against cyber attacks, disinformation, and misinformation.

The establishment of the centre was approved during the 15th ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting (ADMM), which was held virtually on 15 June.

The Singapore Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) said in a statement that the centre will complement the ASEAN Cyber Defence Network in promoting regional exchanges, interactions, and co-operation on cyber-security matters.

In addition, MINDEF said that the ADMM participants also approved Singapore‘s proposal to host next year an ADMM-Plus conference – which includes representatives from the 10 ASEAN member states, as well as from eight other countries, namely Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation, and the United States – on countering chemical, biological, and radiological (CBR) threats.

On the sidelines of the 15 June ADMM, an ASEAN-China Defence Ministers' Informal Meeting was held during which Beijing reaffirming its commitment to strengthening ASEAN-China defence co-operation in areas such as think-tank exchanges, counter-terrorism, and humanitarian mine action, according to MINDEF.

The ASEAN defence ministers acknowledged the “wide-ranging and strong co-operation” with China in terms of political security, economic, and people-to-people relations and commended maritime exercises with the People‘s Liberation Army Navy, which “provided opportunities to practise the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea”, said MINDEF.

The parties involved also reaffirmed their commitment to resuming negotiations on a code of conduct in the South China Sea and working towards its “early and expeditious conclusion”.

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