The Star Media Group (SMG) Chairman Datuk Fu Ah Kiow has called upon Malaysia’s businesses to explore investment opportunities in China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) routes. Total investments led by China in the project is estimated to increase up to $5 trillion from the initial US$1 trillion.
Fu mentioned this in his welcome address at the Malaysia-China Outlook Forum hosted by SMG. He said that SMG organised the forum in order to share insights because the ‘business community’ in particular is interested to know more about China.
China is doing everything possible to promote BRI which is anticipated to boost connectivity between China and countries in Asia, Africa, Europe, South America, and the Pacific. BRI involves both strategic and economic focus. Fu said in his speech, “In a recent international research report, it was said that the BRI programmes could attract Chinese and global investments totalling US$4 to 5 trillion, much higher than the initial estimate of US$1 trillion when the BRI was launched in 2013 by China’s President Xi Jinping.”
Chinese state-owned enterprises are playing a key role in the project’s implementation and Malaysia’s companies should capitalise on BRI’s investment opportunities, Datuk Kiow said. As of October 2018, the Chinese enterprises were awarded nearly half of BRI projects which translates to more than 70 percent by value, media reports said. The significant BRI projects the East Coast Rail Link project and the Bandar Malaysia project will boost Malaysia’s economy, Datuk Kiow said. With that, it also implies that the government is keen to reinforce the economic relations further.