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China affirms friendly ties with Malaysia will be maintained

Beijing has affirmed the friend­ship and cooperation between Chi­na and Malaysia will be maintained, as Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (pic) concluded his official visit to China.

The Prime Minister announced the cancellation of China-backed mega projects including the East Coast Rail Link and two gas pipelines projects, saying that the projects were not viable due to the country’s current financial situation.

Despite that, Chinese Foreign Affairs Ministry’s spokesman Lu Kang stated that China was satisfied with the outcome of Dr Mahathir’s visit and viewed the trip as a successful one in enhancing the bilateral relations.

He said both nations would always hold friendly policies toward each other in whatever situation that may be, added that this long-term friendship would be maintained.

“The two countries will continue to expand trade volumes while enhancing cooperation in infrastructure, e-commerce and innovation,” he added.

During his official visit, Dr Mahathir visited several headquarters. These were, amongst others, Alibaba, Geely and a technology innovation park to witness the nation's leading initiatives on innovation.

At Alibaba’s HQ, the Malaysian Prime Minister was briefed on the company’s various initiatives. Amongst them is an artificial intelligence driven project to improve Kuala Lumpur’s infamous traffic gridlock using data from existing traffic cameras.

Dr Mahathir told the Chinese conglomerate’s co-founder Jack Ma that Malaysia is keen on adopting its various hi-tech platforms to bolster economic growth.

“What you have achieved is quite fantastic … we’d like to tap your idea of modern technology for the benefit of the people”, the Malaysian leader told Ma after an hour-long briefing on the Chinese firm’s latest ventures.

At Geely, he witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understand (MoU) between the company and Proton Holdings in setting up a production plant to assemble and market Proton cars – a step forward to fulfil his long dream of seeing the national car being sold in China.

Dr Mahathir also visited drone-­maker Da Jiang Innovations and National Agricultural Science and Technology Innovation Park of the Chinese Academy of Agriculture Sciences, where he was briefed on modern agriculture techniques and home farming by using artificial sunlight.

He also witnessed the signing of six MoUs in the fields of agriculture, technology, commodity and finance between the two countries.

Astonished by China’s ability to produce their own goods, Dr Maha­thir urged Malaysians to take a leaf out of the Chinese book instead of relying on imported goods.

​Source: The Star and South China Morning Post