KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 3 — Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Sirim Bhd chairman Tan Sri Ahmad Tajuddin Ali are among foreign dignitaries who will receive awards under the 2018 Autumn Conferment of Decorations by the Japanese government.
“In recognition of his contributions toward strengthening bilateral relations, promoting friendship between Japan and Malaysia, Dr Mahathir will receive the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers,” the Japanese Embassy said in a statement.
It said Dr Mahathir has made extraordinary contributions to the close and friendly relations between both countries for decades.
“After assuming the post of fourth prime minister in 1981, Dr Mahathir adopted the ‘Look East Policy’ and encouraged the Malaysian people to learn from Japan by providing opportunities for Malaysian youth to study in Japan,” the statement added.
It also said more than 16,000 Look East Policy alumni studied in Japan, and they have acted as a bridge between Japan and Malaysia, significantly contributing to the close ties between the two countries in various fields.
During his tenure as the fourth prime minister, Dr Mahathir successfully attracted investments from many Japanese companies.
He has maintained positive, constructive and future-oriented views of Japan and its people based on his first-hand experiences and established the foundation of friendly relations and close partnership.
Ahmad Tajuddin will receive the Order of the Rising Sun (Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon) in recognition of his contributions to promoting economic relations.
Ahmad Tajuddin is also pro-chancellor of Universiti Tenaga Nasional (Uniten) and chairman of Universiti Teknikal Malaysia Melaka (UTeM).