Asean Observer

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SEPANG, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has arrived in Malaysia for a two-day working visit, his maiden trip to the country since becoming premier in Oct 2021.

The special aircraft carrying Kishida and his delegation touched down at the Bunga Raya Complex of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) here at 7.35 pm.

On hand to welcome Kishida were Deputy Foreign Minister Datuk Mohamad Alamin and Japanese Ambassador to Malaysia Takahashi Katsuhiko.

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

Kishida is scheduled to hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim on Sunday, where both leaders are expected to review the progress of bilateral relations followed by a luncheon hosted by Anwar.

Both leaders will also witness the exchange of the Memorandum of Cooperation in the field of Information and Communications between Malaysia’s Communications and Digital Ministry and the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications of Japan.

“The working visit is poised to further strengthen the already established good relations between the two countries,” said Wisma Putra in a statement issued in conjunction with Kishida’s visit.

It added that the visit held special significance as it coincided with the commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation this year.

Malaysia and Japan upgraded their ties from an Enhanced Partnership to a Strategic Partnership in 2015, when Kishida visited Malaysia as Foreign Minister.

Japan has been Malaysia’s fourth-largest trading partner since 2015.

As of June 2023, a total of 2,778 projects by Japanese companies have been implemented in Malaysia, with investments amounting to RM91.89 billion (US$27.43 billion).

Source: BERNAMA News Agency