BY WONG SAI WAN
The Star Online
June 1, 2004
SHANGHAI: Malaysian companies
must venture into China but should not treat
the world’s most populous country
as an easy pot of gold, Prime Minister Datuk
Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said.
cannot afford to ignore and miss out on
the developments in China, as the Chinese
economy is increasingly shaping up to be
the fulcrum of the global economy.
“However, I would
caution Malaysian businessmen against jumping
on the China bandwagon simply for the sake
of wanting ‘to be in China.’
“You must invest
your presence in China, and not expect to
conclude deals within short business meetings.
There are no short cuts and there is no
easy pot of gold here,” said Abdullah
in his luncheon address before some 400
Chinese and Malaysian business leaders here,
He added that there were
still Malaysian businessmen who thought
of China simply as a large market of one
Reminding them to build
up networks and relationships, he said Malaysians
needed to be more sophisticated in their
understanding and appreciation of China.
“You need to grasp
the intricacies of the different provinces
as each has a different economic profile,
core industries and players as well as physical
and financial infrastructure,” he
He urged Chinese businessmen
to tap the opportunities in Malaysia, especially
its rich resources and skill base as well
as it being a gateway to the 550 million
people of Asean.
Addressing the Malaysian
attraction for Chinese businesses, Abdullah
said besides being in Asean, Malaysia was
a platform for them to venture into India
and OIC member countries, which had strong
business networks and excellent bilateral
relations with Malaysia.
“Given our multi-lingual
and multi-cultural capabilities, Malaysia
can function as an integrated marketing
and customer service centre for Chinese
companies,” he added.
Abdullah reaffirmed Malaysia's
belief in China’s commitment to economic
reforms and ability to adhere to WTO obligations.
“I am pleased to
announce Malaysia’s recognition of
China as a full market economy.
“We have much to
gain by partnering and sharing.
“I, therefore, look
forward to the fruits of the Malaysia-China
partnership, as we invest in our collective
future together,” he added.