SEPANG, June 18 — China’s Premier Li Qiang arrived in Malaysia today to begin his three-day official visit, marking his first trip to the country since assuming the post in March last year.

The Air China aircraft carrying Li and his delegation touched down at the Bunga Raya Complex of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) at 8.44pm.

Among those who welcomed him were the Chinese Ambassador to Malaysia Ouyang Yujing, Transport Minister Anthony Loke and Malaysia’s Ambassador to China Datuk Norman Muhamad.

Upon arrival, Li inspected a static guard of honour mounted by 28 officers and personnel from the First Battalion of the Royal Ranger Regiment (Ceremonial Infantry), led by Captain Amirul Akmal Osman.

Li’s visit coincides with the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Malaysia and China, following the signing of the Joint Communiqué between second Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak Hussein and then Chinese Premier Chou En Lai on May 31, 1974.

During his visit, Li is scheduled to hold a meeting with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to discuss bilateral matters and exchange views on regional and global issues of mutual interest.

Both leaders will also witness the signing of several Memoranda of Understanding and agreements in various areas of cooperation, including the digital economy, green development, tourism, housing and urban development, higher education, science and technology and the export of agricultural commodities to China.

They will also attend a dinner in celebration of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations.

Li will also have an audience with His Majesty Sultan Ibrahim, King of Malaysia.

The Chinese premier is expected to attend the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) groundbreaking ceremony in Gombak and a luncheon with the business communities of both countries.

China has remained Malaysia’s largest trading partner for fifteen consecutive years since 2009, with total trade amounting to RM450.84 billion (US$98.90 billion) in 2023.

Malaysia’s ties with China have grown from strength to strength since the elevation of bilateral relations to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in 2013. — Bernama