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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

MIER: US adopts pragmatic approach in FTA talks with M’sia
The United States is adopting a pragmatic approach in its free trade agreement (FTA) negotiations with Malaysia, according to a think thank.
Malaysia lays out position on FTA with US
A statement released by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) lists out the government’s position as well as the state of play in the various areas of its negotiations on an FTA with the US.
Malaysia vows to guard sovereign rights in US trade talks - minister
Malaysia will not sign trade pacts with any country, including the United states, if it involves sacrificing the interest of the majority ethnic Malays, Trade Minister Rafidah Aziz said.
Govt urged to be careful in FTA talks with US
Umno Youth urged the Malaysian government to be careful in its negotiations with the United States over the proposed Free Trade Agreement between the two countries to ensure it is not one-sided and puts the country a loss.
Workshop on “Malaysia-US free trade agreement: Issues, implications and challenges” - summary report
Report of a workshop jointly organized by the Third World Network (TWN) and the Consumers’ Association of Penang (CAP) on 6 September 2006 in Kuala Lumpur. The workshop was attended by more than 100 participants representing government ministries and agencies, policy makers, NGOs, civil society groups, academics, local industries, professional bodies, trade unions, farmers and people living with HIV/AIDS.
US-Malaysia trade talks may not meet US deadline — US official
Malaysia and the United States have made good progress towards forging a free trade deal, but negotiations may fail to meet Washington’s deadline to sign a pact, a senior US trade official said.
US offers huge government procurement for FTA with Malaysia
The United States is offering about 250 billion U.S. dollars worth of government procurement to Malaysia as the two countries is proceeding with the third round of negotiations of the US-Malaysia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday.
Malaysian and US business communities support FTA
The Malaysian and American business communities have announced their support for successful completion of the third round of US-Malaysia Free Trade Agreement (USMFTA) negotiations this week.
Anti-free trade alliance demands end to talks on US-Malaysia pact
Dozens of placard-waving Malaysians on Monday demanded the suspension of a proposed free trade agreement between Malaysia and the United States as officials from the two countries began a new round of negotiations.
Anti-free trade alliance plans mass protest during US-Malaysia trade talks at end-Oct
Malaysian activists Thursday announced a mass a protest during US-Malaysia talks later this month on a free trade pact, saying such an agreement could jeopardize jobs and deprive poor people of cheap, generic drugs.


  • 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.