KUALA LUMPUR — The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China are growing stronger ties, a senior Malaysian government official said on Nov 17.
“Both sides have benefitted tremendously from the long-forged ties that are steeped in history,” Malaysian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Dato’ Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican told a seminar.
The 10-nation bloc’s engagement with China is one of its most comprehensive and multifaceted engagements with any dialogue partner, Reezal said.
“It is clear that there are various avenues that we can explore to further enhance the political, economic and sociocultural bonds that we share while minimizing the potential for misunderstanding between the two sides.”
While the economic achievements are laudable, certain imbalances have to be addressed, trade has yet to be diversified beyond manufactured goods, he added.