KUALA LUMPUR - In recent interviews with Xinhua, both Malaysian Minister of International Trade and Industry Mustapa Mohamed and former Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi spoke highly of the Maritime Silk Road proposal delivered by Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Xi suggests to construct the Maritime Silk Road and the Silk Road Economic Belt in the 21st century.
Mustapa said the Malaysian side is supportive on the incentive of building the Maritime Silk Road and the Silk Road Economic Belt, and have been keeping an open mind on it.
Mustapa said he visited Qinzhou Port of China two years ago, which gave a deep impression on him.
"Kuantan of couse is small, but government is spending a lot of money at Kuantan Port for such development. So, Kuantan, Port Klang, Pinang and Johor Port, this is very important links of Maritime Silk Road," he said.
The minister said they are very supportive of this proposal, and will come out with complete program to promote it between the ports in China and Malaysia.
Moreover, he revealed that as the trade volume between China and Malaysia is very huge, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has decided to set up a high level committee chaired by him, to monitor closely the ties between the two countries.
"Not just investment trade, also tourism, culture, agriculture, halal and other issues as well," he said, adding," this is a very important decision made by our PM, twice a year he will chair meetings between Malaysia government officials and those of us involved in promoting closely ties with China."
Meanwhile, in a separate interview with Xinhua, Badawi also expressed his support for the proposal from the Chinese side.
"The Chinese ships used to come to Malaysia, and then traded from Malaysia to the Middle East long time ago," he said, adding that now the Maritime Silk Road will connect China with the ASEAN countries more closely.
He also said the initiative had many positive effects in promoting peace, stability and friendship in the region.