TOKYO: Japan has told Malaysia that the request for a yen loan is a possibility, with the focus on transportation, education and human resource development.
Japan’s prime minister Shinzo Abe said a team of experts from Japan’s railway companies would be despatched to Malaysia at the end of November as part of a study towards this end.
Speaking at a joint press conference with Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad after their bilateral talk here today, Abe said comprehensive transport links were needed, especially regarding passenger and cargo transport.
“I told Dr Mahathir that Japan will study with Malaysia the possibility of extending yen loan with primary focus on transportation, education and human resource development.
“I hope this study will lead to concrete cooperation in future,” he added.
Malaysia had asked for yen loan during Dr Mahathir’s first meeting with Abe in June to help resolve the Malaysian government’s debt.
When tabling the 2019 Budget, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng revealed that the Japanese government has offered to guarantee up to 200 billion yen for the issuance of 10-year Samurai bonds via the Japan Bank of International Cooperation at an indicative coupon rate of 0.65% to be issued before March next year.
Dr Mahathir, in his remarks at the press conference, thanked the Japanese government for the positive attitude they had adopted towards financial problem of Malaysia and for actions that had been taken so far.
“Abe assured us that if in future we have a need to seek Japanese support in solving our financial problem, he is ready and Japanese government is ready to consider it,” he added.
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