Minister: Malaysia hopes to do more business with India


PRIMARY Industries Minister Teresa Kok has expressed hope that there would be more business coming to Malaysia from India and vice versa.

She said this in response to a recent report by Reuters saying the country’s top sugar producer MSM Malaysia Holdings Bhd, a subsidiary of palm oil plantation firm FGV Holdings Bhd, would step up its purchase of raw sugar from India. Unnamed sources quoted by the report described the move as part of efforts to placate New Delhi amid an ongoing spat over palm oil imports.

“Yes, I’ve read the article. It is one of the subsidiaries of FGV that wants to buy more sugar from India. I’m glad that the private sector under FGV is willing to do so.

“In my last visit to India (during a) meeting with their minister of commerce, their main complaint was, since India buys so much palm oil from us, we should also consume more of their products which include sugar, basmati rice and many more,” she told reporters after the Scott Garden Joint Management Committee Chinese New Year (CNY) 2020 lion dance performance event in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Earlier this month, India curbed Malaysian palm oil imports in a move seen as retaliation to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s criticism of New Delhi’s policy towards Kashmir.

Meanwhile, the CNY festivities yesterday was celebrated in the neighbourhood around Scott Garden in Jalan Klang Lama, with families and children gathered to witness an acrobatic lion dance performance by 10 lions at the event organised by one of its main tenants, Decathlon Malaysia. — Bernama