Business / Economy

Malaysia seeks to further strengthen economic ties with China

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-08-12 14:13

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia looks forward to closer economic ties with China by enhancing bilateral cooperation in various fields, Malaysian Minister of International Trade and Industry Mustapa Mohamed told Xinhua in a recent exclusive interview.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between Malaysia and China, and Mustapa said the two countries have enjoyed very close political and economic ties in the past 40 years.

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Forty years ago, there was hardly any trade or investment between the two countries, Mustapa said. "But now China is Malaysia's biggest trading partner, while Malaysia is China's biggest trading partner in ASEAN, and the trade volume in 2013 between the two countries amounted to $106 billion," he added.

Mustapa said the two countries also have two sister industrial parks in the Chinese city of Qinzhou and Malaysia's coastal resort of Kuantan. "The park in Qinzhou has been doing very well, and our job in Malaysia now is to make sure that we develop the Malaysia-China Kuantan Industrial Park in the shortest possible time," he added.

Mustapa said no matter on trade, culture, education or tourism, the relations between Malaysia and China have become closer and closer, which are further cemented by the good ties between the two countries' highest leadership.

"The prime minister of Malaysia has enjoyed very close ties with Chinese leaders in the last many years," he said.

However, the minister believed that there are also many areas that the two countries can further promote. "Investment is an area where we can further improve," he said.

At present, Malaysia has more than $6 billion of investment in China, while there has been only $1 billion of Chinese investment to Malaysia, Mustapa said, adding that they would like to see more investments coming from China.

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