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Singapore extends Formula 1 GP deal until 2017

The Singapore Grand Prix will remain on the Formula 1 calendar for at least another five years after organisers completed a new deal with Bernie Ecclestone on Saturday

There had been concerns over the future of F1's first night race as the Singapore authorities and Ecclestone's Formula One Management organisation struggled to agree new terms.

The Marina Bay event appeared with a question mark on the provisional 2013 calendar this week as discussions continued.

But an agreement has now been reached to ensure that Singapore will stay on the schedule through 2017.

"All of us like being here, which is what made it difficult for us to negotiate," said Ecclestone. "We are here for another five years."

Government officials said that the new deal would pave the way for a big reduction in the costs to the government for holding the race.

S. Iswaran, Singapore's senior minister of trade, industry and education, revealed that under current terms the event cost £75 million to host - with the government funding around 60 percent of that.

Going forward, he said there would be a cost cuts programme - plus dropped a major hint that the fee being paid to Formula 1 chiefs for the race was being cut.

"We expect to achieve a further reduction in the net cost to the government through a combination of factors - including an optimisation of our infrastructure and some of the government facilities being used, greater efficiencies operationally in the way the race is being organised and conducted, and also in terms of revised terms with the race promotion and FOA."

Ecclestone himself declined to elaborate on whether or not the fee paid to Formula One Administration had been reduced.

"I always believe that this sort of questions should not be asked," he said. "A gentleman should never speak about money or last night."

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