Kuala Lumpur, April 17 : India's relations with Malaysia will flourish with regular high-level exchanges between leaders of the two countries and due to active engagements in areas such as defence, economic, and people-to-people exchanges, says High Commissioner Mridul Kumar.
In the last four years, there have been four visits by the Heads of Government of both countries, including the visit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on May 31 last year.
“This year, once our election is over, we can expect important visitors from Malaysia to India and vice-versa,” he told Malaysia's Bernama International News Service in an interview. On defence cooperation, Kumar said: “We are giving a major statement to Malaysia of what we are actively doing in defence engagement.”
India sent the biggest delegation ever to participate in Malaysia’s 2019 Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) from March 26-30. India showcased its indigenously built fighter jet Light Combat Aircraft Tejas (LCA Tejas) and performed an impressive aerial as well as static display.
Tejas aircraft was supported by Indian Air Force’s C-130 and IL-76 aircraft and about 90 officers, airmen and technicians. India also sent INS KADMATT, an indigenously developed anti-submarine corvette, to participate in the fleet review. Big Indian defence industries like Hindustan Aeronautical Limited (HAL), Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO), Goa Shipyard, and BRAMOS Aerospace also participated and exhibit Indian prowess in the field of maritime and aerospace industry.
He described the bilateral relations as being at its best and said this was due to the personal rapport between the leadership of the two countries and is based on complementarities and mutual interest.
“The one year that I have worked here as the High Commissioner has not just been fruitful, but also a very productive and satisfying one for me. I am positive that in the years to come, bilateral relations will further strengthen and reach newer heights,” he said.
Kumar took office on February 15 last year.
The High Commissioner said trade and economic cooperation would see an "upward movement" as there are no major issues between the two sides. India is Malaysia's 10th largest trading partner. Two-way trade target of US$15 billion set for 2020 was achieved in 2018-2019.
India is the only country which recently cut duties on crude and refined palm oil imported from Malaysia.
India imports 60 per cent -- 15.5 million tonnes annually -- of its edible oil requirements, largely from Malaysia, Indonesia, Argentina and Ukraine.
The duty on crude palm oil from Malaysia, Indonesia and other ASEAN members was cut to 40 per cent from 44 per cent.
The tax on refined palm oil was cut from 54 per cent to 45 per cent if it comes from Malaysia, and to 50 per cent if purchased from Indonesia or other ASEAN nations.UNI