India, Malaysia looking at expanding cooperation in defence, trade, tourism | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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India, Malaysia looking at expanding cooperation in defence, trade, tourism

Nov 08, 2023 07:18 AM IST

External affairs minister S Jaishankar and his Malaysian counterpart Zambry Abdul Kadir co-chaired the bilateral Joint Commission Meeting.

India and Malaysia explored new areas of cooperation such as digital, fintech and semiconductors as external affairs minister S Jaishankar and his Malaysian counterpart Zambry Abdul Kadir co-chaired the bilateral Joint Commission Meeting (JCM) on Tuesday.

External affairs minister S Jaishankar with Malaysina foreign minister Zambry Abd Kadir at the 6th India-Malaysia Joint Commission Meeting in New Delhi on November 7. (PTI)
External affairs minister S Jaishankar with Malaysina foreign minister Zambry Abd Kadir at the 6th India-Malaysia Joint Commission Meeting in New Delhi on November 7. (PTI)

The JCM met after a gap of 12 years, and Jaishankar said in his opening remarks that the mechanism was important for taking stock of the bilateral relationship. The last JCM was held in Kuala Lumpur in 2011.

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“You [Malaysia] are today a very crucial strategic partner for us. We are among your top 10 trading partners and you are our third largest [trading partner] in Asean,” he said.

The meeting is also an opportunity to explore new areas like digital, renewable energies, semiconductors and space, he said. “We have always valued your support for our larger relationship with the Asean,” he added.

Kadir, who is visiting India for the first time in his capacity as foreign minister, said in his opening remarks that the two sides would explore “more areas of cooperation and collaboration for now and the future”.

After the meeting, Jaishankar posted on X that the two sides had reviewed progress in their cooperation in defence, security, trade, health, energy, education, tourism and people-to-people ties.

“Also shared perspectives on the Indo-Pacific, ASEAN, West Asia and other regional and global issues,” he added.

The two foreign ministers witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding for cooperation between Prasar Bharti and Radio Television Malaysia (RTM), and another agreement between the Sushma Swaraj Institute of Foreign Service and Malaysia's Institute of Diplomacy and Foreign Relations on cooperation in the training of diplomats.

Kadir also called on vice president Jagdeep Dhankhar and discussed ways to boost bilateral ties.

India and Malaysia marked 65 year of diplomatic ties in 2022. The ties were elevated to an enhanced strategic partnership in 2015 and the two sides issued a roadmap for cooperation in 2017.

Kadir’s visit was an opportunity to “comprehensively review bilateral relations and to explore ways to further deepen and strengthen them”, the external affairs ministry said in a statement.

In 2022, India was Malaysia’s 11th largest trading partner, with total trade amounting to $19.63 billion, an increase of 23.6% compared to the value recorded in 2021.

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