The United States has announced that it will deploy two additional combat ships to Singapore in the next two years as part of the US commitment to deepening its military engagement in the Asia-Pacific region.

The move was announced in a joint statement of US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and his Singaporean counterpart Ng Eng Hen issued following their meeting in Washington on December 12.

During their meeting at the Pentagon, the two officials discussed ways to expand bilateral military cooperation in areas such as cyber and maritime security.

The Singaporean minister said he believes the US presence in the region is a force for stability.

Meanwhile, Hagel reiterated the US commitment to its rebalance toward Asia , saying that he hopes a bipartisan budget compromise being put to Congress will provide some reassurance to allies and friends.

Discussing China ’s newly-established air defense identification zone (ADIZ), Hagel repeated the US call for China not to implement the zone or take similar action elsewhere, stressing that both US and Singapore share deep concern about the ADIZ.

Ng said bilateral relationship between the United States and China will impact all countries and regional stability, and emphasised the need for dialogue to reduce the risk of miscalculation.-VNA