KUCHING: The state government has entered into an agreement with Fujian province, China, to enhance bilateral ties in economic trade, investments and advance technologies.
A dclaration of friendship agreement was signed between the two governments here, which will lead to greater collaboration in various industries and sectors including health, agriculture, education, sports, culture and human capital development.
Sarawak Industrial and Entrepreneur Development, Trade and Investment Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan signed the declaration on behalf of the state government, while Fujian province was represented by its vice-governor Hong Jiexu.
“There are many areas that Sarawak and Fujian province can tap into. The state is looking for technical knowledge in various fields while China is expanding its economy worldwide.
“Sarawak welcomes both local and foreign investors, especially those with modern technology and know how to help us move up the value chain in the global economy,” Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said in his speech read by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas at the event.
Adenan said China was one of Malaysia’s important trading partners, with total trade reaching RM231bil last year.
Export to China was RM102bil or 13% of the country’s total export, while imports reached RM129bil or 18.9% of total import.
Awang Tengah, in his speech, said the declaration would see collaboration and investment in industries here such as high-tech electronics, energy intensive, agriculture, fishing, halal food processing, shipbuilding, biomass and real estate development.
Other areas the state is looking to collaborate include air connectivity with Fujian Province, timber-based industries, downstream oil and gas processing industry and petrochemical industry.
“China remains an important trading partner and it is becoming an emerging source of foreign direct investment for the state in recent years.
Last year, Sarawak’s export to China totalled RM7.4bil and imports totalled RM4.5bil.
“The state exports mainly natural gas, timber and timber products, electrical components, while importing manufactured goods and machineries,” he added.
Hong said Sarawak remained an important gateway for Fujian province to penetrate into the South-East Asian economic region. There have been frequent discussions between both governments to further strengthened economic trade and investments since last year.