PUTRAJAYA, April 28 (Bernama) — Malaysia will establish a Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) representative office in Beijing to facilitate bilateral trade growth and to settle transactions in the local currency.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said it was noticed that the quantum of trade settled in local currency had exceeded in the first quarter of this year than the whole of last year.
“Both parties recognised the growing relationship particularly between the central bank of Malaysia and China. The agreement to settle trade in local currency is a huge step forward,” he told a joint press conference with visiting Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao who is on a two-day official visit to Malaysia.
Earlier, the two leaders had bilateral discussions.
“I’m delighted that Prime Minister Wen is very positive about thr central bank’s intention to establish a representative office in Beijing,” said Najib, who is also Finance Minister.
Malaysia and China today signed several agreements and memoranda of understanding which include the Agreement on Expanding and Deepening Economic and Trade Cooperation.
Najib said the signing of the agreement signified a deep commitment between the two governments to identify new areas of economic collaborations which should stimulate more trade and investment between the two countries.
“We have witnessed a very strong growth in bilateral trade between our two countries which has reached a level of US$75 billion in total trade, an increase of about 20 per cent per annum over several years.
“I m also very appreciative of Premier Wen s commitment that China will buy in big quantities of Malaysian palm oil and palm oil products,” said Najib.
Both leaders also saw the importance of increasing investments between the two countries, with Najib inviting Chinese companies to participate in several infrastructure projects to be implemented besides the second Penang Bridge.
Najib said both sides took note that bilateral ties have developed both in terms of broadening the areas of cooperation and deepening existing ones.
“It is very positive discussions and both of us are equally optimistic that our bilateral relations will continue to prosper,” said Najib.
Najib acknowledged Premier Wen as a very close friend of Malaysia and recognised China’s growing role in bilateral, regional and international affairs.
“We have every confidence that given his strong leadership that China will continue to prosper and to provide a very strong impetus in terms of global economic growth and more importantly in the context of bilateral ties where we can look forward to many many years of strong, deep and very friendly ties between us,” he said.
Meanwhile, Wen, who is in Malaysia to reciprocate Najib’s visit to China in 2009, said the Chinese government had approved the Malaysian central bank’s request to establish a representative office in Beijing.
Source : Bernama