KUALA LUMPUR, April 15 — Malaysia and China people-to-people relations are poised to further strengthen with increased exchanges and movement of people at all levels as both countries commemorate 50 years of diplomatic ties this year, said Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC) President Yang Wanming.

He highlighted Malaysia’s popularity as a destination among Chinese tourists, anticipating that by the end of this year, the number of Chinese tourists visiting Malaysia will surpass the pre-pandemic figures recorded in 2019.

“It is expected that the number of Chinese tourists visiting Malaysia this year to reach 3.36 million by the end of this year compared to 3.1 million in 2019,” he told Bernama through an English translator when met after a meeting with Malaysia-China Friendship Association, here today.


Yang is leading a delegation of six CPAFFC members on a visit to Malaysia from April 14 to 17. Besides Kuala Lumpur, the delegation is also scheduled to visit Putrajaya and Melaka.

Regarding the celebration of the golden jubilee of diplomatic ties between Malaysia and China, Yang emphasised the longstanding cooperation between the two nations. China views Malaysia as an important country and trade partner in its diplomatic relations.

“China views great importance in developing its relation with Malaysia. China and Malaysia are strategic partners,” he added.


Looking ahead, he hoped for the expansion of relations between Malaysia and China. He suggested various measures to achieve this, including the exchange of public servants across all sectors, strenghtening sister cities between the two countries, and the organisation of additional dialogue sessions, conferences, and symposiums to foster mutual understanding.

Additionally, Yang emphasised the importance of promoting cultural and arts exchanges between Malaysia and China, as well as the involvement of young leaders in these initiatives. He also stressed the role of media from both sides in conveying positive information and fostering better relations.

Meanwhile, Datuk Abdul Majid Ahmad Khan, President of the Malaysia-China Friendship Association, commented on the meeting held at the iconic Petronas Twin Towers, stating that both sides have concluded that over the past 50 years, Malaysia and China have nurtured their relationship to what it is today — very healthy and strong.

It reflects in the significance of both countries attached to to the relationship by both countries.He further elaborated that the upcoming 50th anniversary celebration is not merely an event or celebration, but rather it embodies the success and achievements that have been reached in terms of mutual trust, mutual respect, understanding, and the level of cooperation between Malaysia and China.

Abdul Majid also suggested that Malaysia should capitalise on China’s strengths in new energy, artificial intelligence, and various other fields for future collaborations.

He highlighted China’s success in training its small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to become proficient exporters, suggesting that Malaysia could learn from their experiences in this regard.

Additionally, Tan Sri Liow Tiong Lai, former MCA President and Health Minister, who was also present at the meeting, recommended increasing student exchanges between Malaysia and China. He noted that currently, such programmes are relatively low, emphasising that student exchange programmes represent a valuable investment in people-to-people relations. — Bernama