Economy, Investment and Trade
Malaysia awards US$364 million railway project to China-led consortium
(3 August 2017) Malaysia’s national rail operator Prasarana Malaysia awarded a US$364 million project to a China-led consortium consisting of CRCC Zhuzhou Locomotive (CRRC ZELC), Siemens Limited China, and Malaysian company Tegap Dinamik. The consortium will supply 42 six-car trains for the 3km Light Rail Transit 3 which is expected to be completed by August 2020. They will also be responsible for the design, manufacture, installation and commissioning of the rolling stock. Chairman of Prasarana Ismail Adam, hopes that the project will provide opportunities for technology transfers to Malaysia.
Meeting between Vietnam and China cancelled amid South China Sea tension
(7 August 2017) A meeting between foreign ministers of Vietnam and China was cancelled amid the growing tension on the South China Sea. Recently, Vietnam showed strong opposition China’s island-building and militarisation in South China Sea and has been the most vocal opponent of China’s claim over the disputed area. In June, tension between the two sides rose as Vietnamese company began drilling for oil and gas in the South China Sea. Both sides gave no reason for the cancelled meeting.
Chinese Foreign Minister praises Singapore’s role in China-ASEAN relationship
(7 August 2017) Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi praised Singapore’s role as coordinator for Beijing and ASEAN relations. Wang Yi and his Singaporean counterpart Vivian Balakrishnan have been meeting frequently over the past eight months and, Wang Yi has confidence in Singapore playing a significant role in moving forward China-ASEAN relations. Dr Balakrishnan added that the two parties are on good terms and that they have not allowed differences to affect the overall tone of their relationship.
ASEAN and China agree on framework for South China Sea
(6 August 2017) ASEAN countries and China have agreed on a framework which will serve as a basis for the parties to begin negotiations a code of conduct for the South China Sea. According to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, the negotiations can start this year on the condition that the South China Sea area remains stable and has no major interference from outside parties. The two-page document shows the general headings on prevention and management of incidents. Spokesman for the Philippines’ Department of Foreign Affairs Robespierre Bolivar said no consensus had been reached to make the code of conduct legally binding.