Taiwan eying stronger ties with Malaysia: envoy

2017/11/11 20:54:35 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
Photo courtesy of Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Malaysia

Photo courtesy of Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur, Nov. 11 (CNA) Taiwan is aiming to bolster exchanges with Malaysia, to the benefit of both countries, Taiwan's representative to Malaysia James Chang (章計平) said Friday.

Under Taiwan's New Southbound Policy, the two nations have already seen results in the areas of economics, tourism and education, Chang said at the opening of the "New Southbound Policy: Taiwan- Malaysia Economic and Trade Forum," in Kuala Lumpur.

In the first nine months of the year, bilateral trade increased 25.1 percent year-on-year to US$12.8 billion, and the figure for the whole year is expected to reach US$17 billion, he said.

In the area of educational exchanges, the number of Malaysian students studying in Taiwan increased in 2016 by an annual 7.42 percent to 16,051, Chang said.

Tourism between the two countries has also been on the rise, he said, citing data for 2016, which showed a 10 percent annual increase in the number of Malaysian visitors to Taiwan.

Under Taiwan's efforts to strengthen bilateral ties, the figure is expected to increase from 470,000 last year to 530,000 this year, Chang said.

The New Southbound Policy, initiated by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) in May 2016, is aimed at creating mutually beneficial relationships through economic cooperation, talent development and resources sharing with 16 countries in Southeast and South Asia, as well as Australia and New Zealand.

(By Kuay Chau-churh and Isabel Wang)

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