H.E. DATIN PADUKA HALIMAH ABDULLAH, Ambassador of Malaysia to Romania.
Malaysia celebrates its 53rd anniversary of Independence on August 31 this year. On this auspicious occasion, it gives me great pleasure to wish all Malaysians and our friends in Romania for continued success and prosperity. For this year, the Independence Day theme is “1Malaysia – Generates Transformation”.
Under the spirit of 1Malaysia, the country shall continue to focus on its human capital development and performance in order to optimise its potential and gear towards greater social unity towards achieving the status as a developed nation in 2020. With a comprehensive economic plan and the nation’s dedication and commitment toward this objective, Malaysia is well under way in its target to achieve this status.
At international level, Malaysia will continue to commit itself as an active player in international fora, and uses its experiences and knowledge in the efforts to help promote and contribute to a more peaceful, secured and balanced world.
On this special occasion, I would also like to highlight on the status of relations between Malaysia and Romania since the establishment of diplomatic ties over 41 years ago, I am pleased to note that bilateral relations between Malaysia and Romania have always been warm. Both countries are committed to further improving and expanding relations, not only in the political and economic realms but also in other fields. Towards this end, both sides have made a significant amount of contacts within the areas of trade and investment, exchange of visits, education and tourism.
The total trade in 2009 was USD 82 M, and there’s still room for an increase in this area. Further, when the economic crisis subsides, the trade exchanges between the two countries could be further enhanced. Romanian business community should take opportunity of Malaysia’s open economy and its ideal location in Southeast Asian region, which could be a springboard to 500 million regional markets. Given the potential that exists, much more can certainly be done. Thus it is our efforts to explore new areas where this bond could be further consolidated and intensified.
Having avoided the worst of the economic crisis that began in 2008, Malaysia is now looking forward to a growth of 6% this year. It is taking steps to continue promoting growth in various sectors, including capital intensive, alternative energy, biotechnology and high value added sectors such as advanced electronics. It is also building on its natural resources and position as a leading supplier of palm oil, rubber and wood. As an Islamic nation, Malaysia is establishing a reputation for halal products and Islamic Finance.
Last but not least, I wish also to take this opportunity to invite Romanians to explore Malaysia as their holiday destination. As a melting pot of rich and colourful cultural heritage that manifests itself in the varied local cuisine, culture and architectural landscape, Malaysia is offering the perfect getaway to discover Asia in one destination. This will also serve not only to strengthen the relations between the two countries, but also to enhance the mutual understanding between the two peoples.