China hopes to deepen its relations and enhance pragmatic cooperation with Malaysia on account of Premier Li Keqiang’s upcoming visit, Vice-Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin told a press briefing on Nov 17.
Premier Li will attend the annual East Asia leaders’ meeting in Kuala Lumpur of Malaysia and make an official visit to Malaysia from Nov 20 to 23 at the invitation of his Malaysian counterpart Najib Tun Razak.
Premier Li will hold talks with Malaysian leaders and meet all circles of people during the visit, Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin said. It is the first time Premier Li has visited Malaysia as Chinese Premier.
China highly values the relationship with Malaysia, a crucial member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), he said, noting that bilateral relationship was lifted to a comprehensive strategic partnership during President Xi Jinping’s visit to the country in 2013.
The bilateral trade is now over $100 billion each year, according to the vice foreign minister, adding Malaysia is the biggest trading partner with China among ASEAN countries in the past seven years while China remains Malaysia’s biggest trading partner.
Mutual investment between two countries has grown rapidly, Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Commerce Gao Yan said, stressing China hopes that this visit will upgrade bilateral trade and investment cooperation, and promote positive results of cooperation in the Belt and Road initiative, marine industry and infrastructure construction.
A series of cooperation documents, including agreements on trade, culture exchanges and judicial cooperation, are expected to be signed during the visit, the vice-foreign minister said.
China also wants to push forward high-speed railway cooperation with Malaysia, he said.
South China’s Guangdong province forged friendly ties with Malaysia’s Melaka state this September. The vice-foreign minister said he believes leaders of both countries will show their support to local-level cooperation during talks.