KUALA LUMPUR, December 15 – US Secretary of State Antony J Blinken and Malaysian Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah today had a frank and fruitful bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the senior US official’s inaugural visit to Malaysia.
“Our discussions covered many areas and relations between the two countries have been strong,” Saifuddin said during the discussion session with hearing-impaired musician Jeshurun Vincent who had visited 102 countries and contributed to cultural diplomacy.
Blinken, who is touring Southeast Asia, arrived in Kuala Lumpur last night for a two-day working visit. It had previously stopped in Jakarta, Indonesia, and will continue its route to Bangkok, Thailand.
Earlier today, Saifuddin, in his welcoming remarks to the bilateral meeting with Blinken, said it was fair to say that the Malaysia-U.S. Comprehensive partnership has never been stronger and believes that it would only deepen and diversify.
Saifuddin’s discussion topics with Blinken included strengthening multi-faceted cooperation in the areas of trade and investment, digital economy, cybersecurity, defense, health and people-to-people relationships.
During the meeting, the two leaders also agreed to resume the Senior Officials Dialogue between Malaysia and the United States as a platform for senior officials from both sides to discuss and exchange views. on matters of mutual importance.
With the United States being an important partner of ASEAN in advancing the region’s digital economy, he called on the United States to seriously consider investing in the creation of high-value start-ups as well as other initiatives within the framework of MyDigital.
Regarding cybersecurity, Saifuddin took the opportunity to request the support and assistance of the United States in the development of an Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC) in Malaysia, similar to those already established. in the USA.
The two leaders also discussed the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic and equitable access to vaccines around the world.
Saifuddin explained to Biden that Malaysia values the role of the United States as well as its support for the centrality of ASEAN, and very welcome the active participation of the United States in ASEAN.
The United States is one of the important partners in the implementation of the Asean Perspective on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP). – Bernama