TWO-WAY trade between Malaysia and China is expected to hit a new record high this year with the implementation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement, said Deputy Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Lim Ban Hong.
Mr Lim said the trade is expected to grow despite the pandemic's effects and the global uncertainty caused by geopolitical tensions, reports Malaysia's national news agency Bernama.
"The latest Chinese trade statistics revealed that Malaysia-China overall trade in the first eight months of 2022 reached US$131.21 billion, growing 21.1 per cent from the corresponding period last year," he said in his opening address at the 19th China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (Cabis) Roundtable Dialogue between Malaysia and chief executive officers from China.
In 2021 alone, a total of 43 manufacturing projects were approved from China worth $3.98 billion, generating nearly 14,000 employment opportunities in Malaysia, according to Mr Lim.
"Malaysia is welcoming more business collaboration from China in new and complex growth areas and this will foster innovation and strengthen supply chain linkages between Malaysian and Chinese companies.
"The resumption of travel links between Malaysia and China is a significant step in the right direction and Malaysia looks forward to receiving more business travellers from China to Malaysia," he added.
Mr Lim noted that Malaysia was among the early supporters of China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and remains committed to deepening economic ties with all BRI participating countries.
Malaysia is committed to facilitating quality investments from China and would continuously be enhancing the country's unique value propositions to ensure that Malaysia remains a preferred investment destination, he said.
On ASEAN-China relations, Mr Lim said that ASEAN and China need to intensify efforts on the trade and investment fronts.
"We must continue to cooperate and support rules-based and multilateral economic agreements to help the region (recover from the) pandemic," he said, adding that both parties have to strive to keep the supply chain connectivity uninterrupted and facilitate the movement of essential goods and services, as well as people.
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