CHINA AND MALAYSIA RELATIONS: INITIATIVES, INVESTMENTS, AND INTRUSIONS

Long Article 

CHINA AND MALAYSIA RELATIONS: INITIATIVES, INVESTMENTS, AND INTRUSIONS

By Vivian Louis Forbes

 

It is natural for neighbours to run into problems…

Hon. Wang Yi, Minister for Foreign Affairs, PRC, 7 June 2021.

Malaysia will continue to practice its long-held fundamental principles in its international relations.

YB Dato Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein,

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Malaysia, 1 September 2021.

No matter how the world changes, our leaders always regard China-Malaysia relations as a priority.

H.E. Ouyang Yujing, China’s Ambassador to Malaysia, October 2020.

 

 SYNOPSIS

 

The diplomatic and economic relationships between China and Malaysia is usually described in many aspects, in positive terms, this despite a territorial and sovereignty dispute that lurks in the geopolitical setting of the South China Sea. Since the mid-1970s, Malaysia has demonstrated active support of China’s self-role and world-order conceptions. Although the States are not terrestrial neighbours, they could potentially share ocean space if deemed necessary and if the political will exists with both parties to delimit a maritime boundary or define zones of maritime jurisdiction. Until the end of 2019, history will record that each were advancing steadily towards their stated objectives. The COVID-19 Pandemic has affected the economies of both countries, however, China’s ‘vaccine diplomacy’ and foreign direct investment (FDI) programmes foster healthy relations during these trying times.

By way of an Introduction the narrative initially discusses the concept of diplomacy and international relations. It is followed with a Background containing comments about the robust trade exchange between China and Malaysia; then examines the political issues and analyses the relationship in the context of the South China dispute, the military balance, and intrusions of Chinese military into Malaysia’s maritime and air spaces. It concludes that the improving cordial friendship between China and Malaysia also disguise the less obvious points of contention and ambiguity that affect any uneven bilateral relations. Malaysia has been discreet in its differences with China, often seemingly to turn a blind eye to certain relevant events.

 

 


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2024-02-26 23:52