News story

UK-Malaysia joint statement

Prime Minister David Cameron and the Prime Minister of Malaysia Dato' Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Razak have published a joint statement.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


David Cameron, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, cordially welcomed Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia, on his first official visit to the United Kingdom since taking office in 2009.

The Prime Ministers held a bilateral meeting in London on 14 July 2011. The 2 leaders exchanged views on a wide range of bilateral, regional and international issues.

Building on the warm and enduring relationship between Malaysia and the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland, the 2 Prime Ministers agreed to develop and deliver 5 shared priorities for cooperation as follows:

  1. Political and diplomatic
  2. Trade and investment
  3. Education and training
  4. Science, technology and environment
  5. Defence and security

The 2 leaders agreed that these initiatives are in line with Malaysia’s efforts in achieving Vision 2020 and the UK’s desire to promote its prosperity, security and values agendas. The overarching goals and measures to achieve these initiatives are based on mutual trust, continuous engagement and enduring partnership.

The 2 Commonwealth leaders recognised that the bilateral relations will be founded upon:

  • common values for the sake of security, stability and development
  • mutual respect for independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity
  • commitment to global free trade
  • promoting democratic values, the rule of law and human rights
  • promoting moderation to achieve global peace
  • respect for the United Nations Charter

Shared priorities

Political and diplomatic

The 2 leaders reaffirmed the importance of people-to-people contacts in enhancing the bilateral relationship. They agreed to promote regular ministerial and other high-level contacts, including parliamentary exchanges. Both sides looked forward to continuing bilateral consultations at various levels.

Both sides agreed to develop continuous engagement and to keep under review the state of bilateral relationship, as well as to exchange views and experiences on various issues of common concern.

The 2 leaders reaffirmed their commitment to promoting closer cooperation in multilateral fora, including the United Nations, the Commonwealth, ASEM and ASEAN - EU fora, and the WTO.

Both sides will pay particular attention to strengthening the EU-ASEAN relationship and in cooperating to promote political stability and security, economic and social development within both regions.

Both sides commit to regular, working-level exchanges of views on regional issues of interest. Areas include supporting the building of an ASEAN Community, and strengthening institutions as underlined in the ASEAN Charter.

Trade and investment

The 2 leaders recognised that commitment to free trade and open markets is vital to ensuring continued global development. They emphasised the importance of the UK-Malaysia Investment Promotion Protection Agreement signed in 1981 and looked forward to the successful conclusion of an ambitious Free Trade Agreement between the EU and Malaysia.

The 2 leaders agreed to encourage and facilitate business, trade and investment of mutual benefit to both countries in order to promote long term stability. They underlined their commitment to intensify effective partnerships between business as well as government, and to share expertise, particularly in the areas of education, green technology, infrastructure development, oil and gas and services.

The 2 leaders recognised the importance of the Memorandum of Understanding for Co-operation on Islamic finance signed by the two countries in 2009 and agreed to promote greater bilateral engagement in this area. Both sides would continue to strengthen the capital market linkages between their two countries and to facilitate greater cross-border activities between the capital markets, through closer cooperation and engagement between the regulators and investment communities of both countries.

The 2 leaders welcomed the signing of Memoranda of Understanding between Petronas (Malaysia) and Petrofac Ltd (UK) to accelerate oil production in the Cendor Field (block PM304), an offshore field in Malaysia, between Warwick University and the National Defence University of Malaysia to provide a bespoke MSc in Engineering Business Management on defence and security , between Reading University (UK) and Malaysia University of Technology, between Imperial College (UK) and Malaysia University of Technology, between Land Public Transport Commission of Malaysia and Department for Transport (UK) in the field of Rail Co-operation, and between the Government of Malaysia and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in the field of Transnational Crime.

The 2 leaders also welcomed cooperation between the Royal Malaysian Customs and HM Revenue and Customs.

The 2 leaders looked forward to the finalisation of the assessment and liberalisation of the Air Services Agreement between Malaysia and the UK which will further enhance air transport links between Malaysia and UK.

Sustainable low carbon development is a long term interest of both our countries. Both countries have made emissions reduction pledges. Both will continue to work under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its Kyoto Protocol to tackle climate change and pursue low carbon economic development.

Education and training

The 2 leaders recognised the importance of cooperation in education and agreed to promote stronger collaboration between the relevant ministries of the 2 countries. They expressed their hope for more partnerships between higher education institutions of the two countries.

Both leaders acknowledged the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Education signed in 2007. They agreed to focus and explore new areas of cooperation including high-level engagement, institutional partnerships, research and development, exchange and sharing of knowledge, creating more university linkages and student mobility.

The 2 leaders also agreed to promote collaboration in teaching English in Malaysia. They recognised that the development of joint initiatives such as the English Language Teacher Development Project and the Virtual Teacher Support Network could contribute to strengthening capacity building for Malaysian primary teachers of English. The 2 leaders acknowledged that further collaboration on sport through the Olympic Project ‘International Inspiration’ could also complement  Malaysia’s initiative of ‘1 child, 1 sport’.

Science, technology and environment

The 2 leaders shared the aim of applying research in science and innovation to meet the challenges of the present as well as capitalise on opportunities in the future. They agreed to explore the potential for developing science and innovation collaboration including academia and industry, as well as promotion of scientific excellence.

They welcomed continued commitment in this area such as the Crops for the Future Research Centre and Nottingham University’s Malaysia Campus, as well as the Royal Society’s research in Danum Valley, Sabah, which will help deliver innovative and sustainable approaches to future land use change in Malaysia. They also looked forward to a successful conclusion of the EU-FLEGT Voluntary Partnership.

Defence and security

The 2 leaders valued the warm and close defence relationship, both bilaterally and through the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA). They will identify specific areas for greater cooperation, particularly with defence programmes in the aerospace and maritime sectors that will contribute towards improved interoperability, greater collaboration, the transfer of technology and the building of industrial capacity.

The 2 leaders welcomed the contribution Malaysia had made to UN peacekeeping, countering global piracy in the Gulf of Aden, and the Mindanao Peace Process in the Philippines.

The leaders underlined that the two countries will work together in capacity building efforts through the ISAF in Afghanistan. The leaders also welcomed the work of the Afghan Government to launch a political process culminating in an inclusive and sustainable settlement.

The 2 leaders discussed the ongoing situation in Libya and the importance of protecting the civilian population as mandated by UN Security Council Resolutions 1970 and 1973. It was imperative that the Libyan regime stopped the attacks against its own people and complied with the Resolutions immediately. Both leaders noted the importance of securing a political transition in which the hopes and aspirations of the Libyan people were realised and through which the Libyan people were able to decide their own future.

Both sides will endeavour to enhance cooperation in the areas of counter-proliferation, countering piracy and transnational organised crime, including money laundering, drug trafficking and cybercrime. The 2 sides will also work closely to combat trafficking in persons and human smuggling.

Published 14 July 2011