Prime Minister Najib Razak has taken a swipe at those who have scaremongered that Malaysia is being sold off following numerous business deals worth over RM140 billion inked with China during his week-long visit to the country.
He said claims of this nature were false.
“There seems to be some who don’t appear to welcome this investment in the Malaysian economy and don’t seem to want the resulting jobs, skills and improvement in people’s lives.
“Some have scaremongered that Malaysia is being sold off. This is absurd and absolutely false,” he said in a statement today.
Najib noted that his official visit to economic powerhouse China had resulted in the signing of 14 business-to-business memorandums of understanding (MoUs) and agreements worth RM143.64 billion, as well as a further 16 government-to-government MoUs and agreements.
This, he said, was a huge vote of confidence in each others’ economies, goodwill and trust that had been built up between China and Malaysia.
Najib emphasised that the infrastructure projects outlined in the pacts would remain owned by Malaysia and operated by Malaysians.
“But for our mutual benefit, we’re building them in partnership with our Chinese friends, just as Malaysian firms are in joint ventures in cutting edge projects all over China,” the prime minister said.
He said the agreements would boost Malaysia’s economy and help all Malaysians have better opportunities and a more prosperous life.
“For these agreements are truly for all our people. They’re just as much for the thousands of swiftlet farmers and half a million oil palm smallholders as they are for well-known corporations,” Najib said.
He drove home the point that the agreements would result in ever stronger Malaysia-China economic ties and bring tangible benefits to the people for decades to come.
The agreements signed would have deep and lasting benefits for Malaysia, he said, citing the example of the East Coast Railway Line which would completely transform the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia.
Najib said it would ensure that the fruits of the country’s development were equitably shared, with the railway serving as the foundation of a new growth corridor for Malaysia.
The prime minister also alluded to the Trans Sabah Gas Pipeline that would provide energy security and further accelerate economic development in the state for Sabahans.
“The renewal of our defence cooperation agreement, combined with the first significant defence deal between our two countries with the construction of four littoral mission ships will deepen security ties between our two nations.
“We need to work shoulder to shoulder to counter security and extremist threats in our region,” Najib said.
As the son of the first leader in the region to recognise the People’s Republic of China and open diplomatic relations, Najib said he was delighted that the two countries had never been closer.
Najib was referring to his father, Malaysia’s second Prime Minister Abdul Razak, who established diplomatic ties with China in 1974.
The prime minister said he had the privilege of meeting some of the finest leaders in China from all sectors during his groundbreaking visit to the country.
“We have much to learn from them and even more from working in partnership with them. We will follow up, for example, by cooperating with some of China’s biggest digital industry leaders to further develop Malaysia’s digital economy,” he said.
He said China-Malaysia relations were special, based on a shared culture yet with mutual respect for their differences.
“It’s a matter of great personal pride that ties between our two countries and our people have grown significantly since I became prime minister in 2009,” he said.
Najib expressed confidence that relations between the countries would continue to go from strength to strength as both nations assumed their rightful role in driving progress and development together in the Asian Century.