MALAYSIA was the first Asean country to establish diplomatic relations with China in 1974.
Since then, the close friendship between Malaysia and China generated much growth, benefitting both countries.
Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said for the past decade, China continuously emerge as the most important trading partner to Malaysia.
“The close ties between our countries will only continue to be better with Pakatan Harapan now at the helm.
“The relationship between Penang and China is also profound.
“The sister city relationship between Penang and Xiamen City has lasted more than 20 years.
“The ties with Penang have now included Hainan Province, Zhongshan City and Chengdu City; in which they have formed friendship city relations with Penang.
“A consulate-general office and a China Visa Application Service Centre have also been established in Penang, signifying the strong bilateral ties between Penang and China,” Chow said in his speech during the reception marking the 45th anniversary of diplomatic ties between China and Malaysia, at Hotel Jen today.
Chow said: “Penang is the economic hub of the northern region in Malaysia. Our cooperation and investments with China have increased tremendously in the recent years.
“More than 40 Chinese corporations are currently operating in Penang. The Chinese investments in the northern region have exceeded RM3.8 billion from 2013 to September 2018.
“The Chinese investments in the northern region amounted to RM900 million during the first three quarters of last year. Of this amount, RM750 million was in Penang.
“It has generated much economic growth for the state,” he said.
Chow said Penang remained a popular tourist destination for the Chinese.
He also spoke on the state’s Penang2030 vision.
“The Penang2030 vision is the state’s ‘direction’ for the next 10 years. It should be the common vision of each and every person who lives, works and invests in Penang,” he said.
The consul-general of the People’s Republic of China in Penang Lu Shiwei said both Malaysia and China have maintained strong diplomatic relations for the past 45 years.
“It is because of the mutual political trust and mutual respect,” he said.
Story by Christopher Tan
Pix by Alvie Cheng
Video by Chan Kok Kuan