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Having signed a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement on 10 May 2004, the US and Malaysia agreed in early 2006 to start negotiating a bilateral Free Trade Agreement. US negotiators indicated that they expected to conclude talks by the end of 2006 but that was not to be.

The Malaysian government has been putting up a fight on various issues such as government procurement (which Malaysia does not want to open to US participation) and its Bumiputra policy (giving special preferences to ethnic Malays). Social movements, on the other hand, reject the talks particularly in terms of the implications of a deal on access to medicines, intellectual property and Malaysia’s autonomy to set policies. The negotiations have stalled since 2009, and are now effectively on ice.

last update: May 2012

Photo: Third World Network

FMM: Restart US FTA talks
Datuk Mustafa Mansur, president of Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) wants the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) discussions with the United States to be restarted to strengthen market access. “The FTA with the US will open up a big market for us,” says Mustafa.
US-Malaysia FTA to be fast-tracked
The US-Malaysia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) is to be fast-tracked under the administration of the new US President Barack Obama, US Ambassador to Malaysia James R. Keith said today.
US-Malaysia FTA talks postponed on US request
The negotiations between Malaysia and the United States on a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) have been postponed on request from Washington, Minister of International Trade and Industry, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said.
PM to Muhyiddin: Explain statement on suspension of FTA talks with US
Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi wants International Trade and Industry Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to brief the Cabinet on his statement that his ministry has temporarily stopped Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations with the United States.
US keen to conclude FTA with Malaysia
The United States says it is keen to conclude the Malaysia-US Free Trade Agreement (FTA) as early as possible under Barrack Obama’s new administration
US wants to hold back FTA talks with Malaysia for a while
The United States wants to hold back the US-Malaysia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) talks until its new government is in place by January next year, International Trade and Industry Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today.
Opposition wants white paper on free trade agreement
Malaysia’s opposition is calling for a white paper on the free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States to be debated in the Dewan Rakyat.
M’sia Firm To Leave Rice Out Of FTA List In Negotiation With US
The Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry has assured that it would stick to its decision not to liberalise the markets for padi and rice in negotiating the free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States.
Malaysia keen on resuming FTA talks with US
Malaysia is looking forward to resuming the stalled Free Trade Agreement (FTA) talks with the incoming US administration.
Obama policies to be studied before FTA can resume
Malaysia will study policies to be introduced by new President-elect Barack Obama before deciding whether to resume the stalled Free Trade Agreement (FTA) talks with the United States.


  • US-ASEAN FTA Business Council
    It aims to removing constraints on trade and investment activities in ASEAN, and elevating the importance of the U.S.-ASEAN economic relationship to American and ASEAN public policy makers and business leaders.