From Datuk Mokhtar Hussain
BEIJING, May 13 (Bernama) --China's 'One Belt One Road' initiative will impact industries, businessmen, farmers and even students in Malaysia especially when China has committed to step up investments for infrastructure projects and import more fresh pineapples and palm oil.
During Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak's meeting with his Chinese counterpart President Xi Jinping here today, three memorandums of understandings involving the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, Transport Ministry and Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry were signed.
Speaking at a press conference here Saturday, Najib, who is on a five-day visit to Beijing, said the 'One Belt One Road Initiative' would derive massive benefits to Malaysia in terms of excellent infrastructure, connectivity, social facilities, better living standards and abundant business opportunities.
Among the major projects under the initiative is the Malaysia-China Kuantan Industrial Park in Pahang, Melaka Gateway, East Coast Rail Link and Xiamen University Malaysia.
Meanwhile, Malaysia also succeeded in penetrating the Chinese market for Malaysian-grown pineapples following the signing today of the protocol on phytosanitary requirement for the export of pineapples from Malaysia to China.
For a start, Malaysia can now export 12,000 tonnes of pineapples, worth RM40 million, annually, to China to be sourced from two plantations that have been approved under the protocol.
Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek said the signing of the protocol reflected the confidence placed by China in the quality of Malaysian pineapples in terms of hygiene, safety and taste.
Meanwhile, President Xi described bilateral trade between Malaysia-China "as being at its best" and praised the Malaysian government for its support and commitment towards the 'One Belt One Road' initiative.
Najib also said Malaysia also showed its commitment by immediately implementing several projects which were discussed during his last trip to China last November.
Besides, he said China was attracted to the National Maritime Park in Melaka and the Xiamen University Malaysia.
Presiden Xi also informed the Malaysian premier that his government would support any company from China that invested in Malaysia as long as they fulfilled the required criteria.
Najib also said Chinese tourist arrivals in Malaysia were expected to hit three million people this year.
On Bandar Malaysia, Najib said he informed President Xi that the project would definitely go on although TRX City Sdn Bhd, wholly-owned by the Ministry of Finance, rejected the acquisition of a 60 per cent stake in the project.
Earlier this afternoon, Najib met Wanda Group Chairman and China's richest man, Wang Jianlin, who is rumoured to be keen to acquire the stake in the project.
He said whatever solution reached would be referred to the Chinese government as the investment must fulfill government requirements.
Najib's delegation included Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz, International Trade and Industry Minister II Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan and Melaka Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron.