KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 9): Closer diplomatic relations between Malaysia and the three Nordic countries, namely Norway, Sweden and Finland, open up opportunities to further expand bilateral trade relations.
Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil said that it is a known fact that the three Nordic countries have a number of companies or businesses based in Malaysia.
“Alhamdulillah, today I was invited to represent the Malaysian government to attend the Nordic Day Celebration 2023. For me personally, it is an honour, as I have attended previously as a Member of Parliament.
“I see this is also a good opportunity to strengthen the relationship between Malaysia and the three countries which celebrate this Nordic Day... with closer relations and better diplomatic relations; I believe we will be able to find opportunities to expand and strengthen relations, especially in terms of bilateral trade,” he said to reporters, after attending the 2023 Nordic Day Celebration on Thursday night.
Also present were Finland's ambassador to Malaysia, Sami Leino, Swedish ambassador to Malaysia, Dr Joachim Bergstrom and Norwegian ambassador to Malaysia, Morten Paulsen.
According to Fahmi, this also provides a good opportunity to exchange views on current issues, including geopolitics.
“My presence today is a sign that the government hopes that we can establish better relations with all these Nordic countries," he said.
Meanwhile, Leino, in his speech, acknowledged the close relations between Nordic countries and Malaysia, saying that it has grown tremendously over the years.
These bilateral relations encompass various areas including trade, education, and sustainable development, he said.
“As many of you probably know, the Nordic countries form, perhaps the most closely integrated region in the world. We have a long history of cooperation, built upon common shared values of countries, on many global issues to advance sustainability and promote human rights or strengthen the international rules-based order.
“At least here in Kuala Lumpur, we even celebrate our National Day together. Even though our countries are geographically distant, there are many similarities that the Nordic countries share with Malaysia,” he said.
He added that with war and conflict in Ukraine and the Middle East, the international community needs to stand together in calling for respect for International Humanitarian Law on the protection of civilians.
“International Law applies to all, regardless of geographical context,” he said.