Najib (behind,L) and Li behind,R) attend a signing ceremony at the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing, China, 01 November 2016. The Malaysian Prime Minister is in China for an official visit. - EPA.
BEIJING: The Malaysian Government's two-year defence deal with China to buy and build four littoral mission ships is a "landmark" decision, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
"The contract value is to be worked out based on (the ships') specifications, but this agreement on cooperation could be extended," he said on Tuesday.
"I call this a landmark decision because before this, we had not bought such vessels from China," said Najib at a press conference after holding bilateral talks with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.
The deal was one of 14 memoranda of understanding (MOU) signed at the Great Hall of The People here after the two leaders successfully held "friendly and fruitful" bilateral talks.
Najib also said China had agreed to grant soft loans to Malaysia for the construction of the East Coast Rail Line, estimated to cost RM55bil.