MINDEF ALLOWS CHINA CONGLOMERATE TO MAINTAIN SAF VEHICLES DESPITE RISKS

The Ministry of Defence is going ahead with the acquisition of a locally listed logistics firm by a Chinese company linked with the China government, despite the inherent security risks involved.

HNA Group has finalized its US$1 billion (S$1.4 billion) purchase of logistics firm CWT Limited, which maintains the Singapore Armed Forces’ (SAF) fleet of tonners, land rovers, tractors, cranes and forklifts, platforms which Mindef has said “do not contain sensitive military technology”.

The acquisition will go through if shareholders approve the process today.

This has left netizens wary of the Chinese government’s possible interference in local military hardware.

One netizen wrote of his disapproval for Mindef’s decision on a popular local forum: “After all the threatening by China? After the confiscation of the Terrex by China? HNA typically used Chinese state owned banks (in other words the Chinese govt) to finance its acquisitions. So, its entirely possible that the Chinese govt directLY SUPPLIED The money to buy CWT.”

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