BEIJING, Nov 11 (Bernama) — Russia has expressed its wish to go beyond the currently limited scope of trading and business opportunities with Malaysia and wants bilateral trade between both countries to be enhanced further.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak, who had a bilateral meeting on Monday with Russian President, Vladimir Putin, on the sidelines of the 2014 APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting in Beijing, said during their meeting, they discussed how the two countries could work together constructively.
Talking to Malaysian media, Tuesday, Najib said what was impressive was the two-way trade which showed a rising trend.
Malaysia-Russia trade for 2012-2013 rose by 66.6 per cent and for January-July this year it has increased by 70 per cent, said Najib, who is also finance minister.
“This showed that the prospects for an increase in trade between Russia and Malaysia were good,” he said, adding that the meeting was at the request of Putin.
Najib said Putin hoped that the cooperation with Petronas in the oil and gas sector could be further explored to expand the sector.
On tourism, Najib said more efforts were needed to attract more Russian tourists to Malaysia because the number was still small compared to tourists from other countries.
“Many Russian tourists visit Dubai and Phuket and not many come to Malaysia. So we need to act to ensure that more of them come to Malaysia,” prime minister said.
Najib said Putin also voiced his intention on cooperation in the phamarceutical industry and the use of nuclear energy for ‘peaceful purpose’ and hoped that Malaysia would buy more weapons from Russia.
Meanwhile, in his meeting with Hong Kong Chief Executive, Leung Chun-ying, Najib said the Hong Kong-China ‘Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement’ has opened up opportunities for Malaysian businessmen to invest there.
“I hope that more Hong Kong tourists would visit Malaysia and Leung agreed to cooperate not only by Hong Kong but also Guangdong,” Najib said.
On his meeting with New Zealand Prime Minister John Key, Najib offered his congratulations for Key’s victory with a big majority in the general elections.
At the meeting, Najib discussed the case involving Warrant Officer II, Muhammad Rizalman Ismail, who was charged with attempted sexual attack with intention to rape a young woman.