Minister for Trade and Industry of Singapore Chan Chun Sing speaks at the 6th International Maritime Security Conference (Photo: mindef.gov.sg)

Singapore (VNA) – Building trust to encourage peace dialogues and compromise is key to dealing with complex marine security challenges which are threatening trade networks, said Minister for Trade and Industry of Singapore Chan Chun Sing.

Chan made his statement while delivering the keynote address at the opening dinner of the sixth International Maritime Security Conference (IMSC) in Singapore on May 14.

In his address, Chan mentioned challenges in piracy and terrorism, noting that an underestimation of an attack at chokepoints like the Panama or Suez Canals could be catastrophic and potentially cut off trade connections between major regions of the world.

He noted that dealing with maritime terrorism requires close coordination and intelligence sharing among nations.

Chan said another pressing concern is maritime cybersecurity, adding that undersea cables which carry the world's data are of particular concern as an attack or incident on the seabed could cut off vital data supporting nations.

He said that as the global economy grows towards greater data connectivity, the impact of cyber-attacks will grow, hence a need to secure the cyberspace that maritime trade runs on.

Themed “Safe and Secure Seas: Mutual Security in our Maritime Commons,” the IMSC has the participation of over 400 international representatives from navies and coast guards, maritime industries, and research institutions from more than 40 countries and territories. The event is held in conjunction with the International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference (IMDEX) Asia 2019 from May 14 to 16. –VNA