Selangor Journal
China’s Ambassador to Malaysia Ouyang Yujing, on January 28, 2021. — Picture by FACEBOOK

China’s new ambassador to work to further deepen bilateral ties with Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR, March 11 — Ouyang Yujing has not wasted any precious time or let the restrictions of the movement control order deter him from carrying out his duty as China’s new ambassador to Malaysia.

Despite the compulsory 14-day quarantine upon arriving in Kuala Lumpur on December 20 last year, he had put the time in isolation to good use – learning more about Malaysia.

He was also quick to arrange and meet with government officials, business and trade leaders, associations and community leaders alike, albeit virtually.

Speaking to Bernama in an exclusive interview at the embassy here, the Ambassador-designate said he hoped the situation will soon be back to normal, as he is eager to meet and engage with the people in Malaysia face-to-face and work to further deepen and elevate Malaysia-China bilateral relations to the next level.

He said as good friends and good partners, opportunities abound for the two nations to further strengthen their relations, especially in the post-Covid-19 era.

In the interview, his first with a Malaysian media since arriving here, the ambassador had set out the mission that he had planned to achieve, with the first top priority now, he said, is to ensure China and Malaysia could work together to defeat and overcome the Covid-19 pandemic as soon as possible.

He said both countries had been working closely since the outbreak of the pandemic last year to combat the pandemic and to revitalise the economy.

“This is also our top priority at the current time. The pandemic has brought an enormous impact on the economy, society and people’s livelihoods.

“I hope our two countries will get out of the dire pandemic at an early stage, and get our economy, society, and lives back on track. I also hope our peoples can have face-to-face exchanges as soon as possible,” he said.

Ouyang said during his tenure here, he also hoped to focus on supporting and promoting communication between China and Malaysia on all levels and in all areas, including governments, parliaments, political parties, academics, media, and the young people.

He noted that the relationship not only benefited from the works carried out by leaders of the two countries but is also contributed significantly by the people of both countries’ active support and participation.

This, he said, is so that more people-to-people exchanges can be encouraged, resulting in a better and stronger China-Malaysia friendship.

Elaborating further, Ouyang said: “People-to-people friendship also holds the key to state-to-state relations, and heart-to-heart communication contributes to deeper friendship”.

Citing tourism as an example, he said Malaysia is the second-largest country getting Chinese visa approval, while China is the third-largest source of foreign tourists to Malaysia, after Singapore and Indonesia, and also the largest source of foreign tourists to Malaysia besides Asean countries.

These had shown that people-to-people exchanges between China and Malaysia have always been exuberant, he added.

“In the face of the new normal of pandemic prevention and control, we have actively explored new approaches, continued to maintain the enthusiasm and a wider scope of people-to-people exchanges between the two countries,” he said.

The ambassador added that in the coming days, he and the embassy will continue to work together with Malaysia’s government and friends from all walks of life, to jointly hold more activities of various forms and on diverse topics.

“The pandemic has affected our face-to-face social and cultural exchanges, but it can never prevent us from connecting with each other and developing our deep friendship,” he said.

On his third wish, he said he hoped that the cooperation potential of the two countries will be further explored, hence making better and faster developments.

There have been a lot of superlatives in the China-Malaysia cooperation, he noted, adding that for instance, China has been the largest trading partner of Malaysia for twelve consecutive years, and the largest FDI source in the manufacturing sector for five consecutive years.

The Xiamen University Malaysia in Sepang, meanwhile, is the first overseas campus set up by the renowned Chinese university, he added.

“All these facts again show the solid foundation, significant advantage, and huge potential of our cooperation. I hope China and Malaysia will create more new highlights in the bilateral cooperation in the post-pandemic era, which will give new impetus to the developments of both countries,” he said.

Malaysia established diplomatic ties with China in 1974, becoming the first country in Asean to do so. Since then, both countries had forged a close relationship and building on a partnership of mutual interests in various aspects.

“The two countries enjoy profound mutual political trust, close beneficial cooperation, as well as deep understanding and affinity between its two peoples.

“Against the current complex of the international landscape, especially in co-combating this unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic, China and Malaysia had supported each other through thick and thin, which has further promoted our traditional friendship, and demonstrated strong resilience and vigour of our bilateral cooperation.

“We are proud to say that China-Malaysia relations have stood the test of time and will continue to prosper. It is both an honoured mission and a great duty for me to be the 16th Ambassador of China to Malaysia,” Ouyang added.

— Bernama

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