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Syria Proposes Malaysia-Syria FTA

Bernama, Malaysia

Syria Proposes Malaysia-Syria FTA

7 January 2009

PUTRAJAYA (Bernama) — Syria today suggested Malaysia and Syria sign a free trade agreement to intensify economic, trade and investment ties between the two countries.

Malaysia took note of the proposal and suggested that the idea be further discussed by the Joint Trade Committee including exploring other options to enhance trade and investment between Kuala Lumpur and Damascus.

This was contained in a joint statement issued after the delegation meeting between Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and his Syrian counterpart Mohammed Naji Otri at the Prime Minister’s Office.

The two leaders agreed to undertake continuous efforts to expand the scope of bilateral relations and explore new areas of cooperation of mutual interests.

Both sides agreed to expand collaborations in banking and finance by studying the possibilities of cooperation between commercial banks in both countries.

Syria and Malaysia want to encourage the private sectors of both sides to participate in trade and investment activities in both countries.

The statement said both sides would develop further cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, air services, tourism, higher education, technical cooperation, capacity building, science and technology, information and communications technology (ICT) and information.

Greater participation in the Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) in the development of ICT, SMART Schools, SMART Card and E-Government will also be promoted, it said.

Both countries agreed to expedite discussions on draft agreements and memoranda of understanding on banking, customs, maritime, immigration, agriculture and housing in order to conclude them as soon as possible.

Today they inked two agreements on promotion and reciprocal protection of investment as well as on air services and a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the field of small-and medium-scale enterprises.

The agreement on promotion and reciprocal protection of investment will, among others, cover investment rights while the agreement on air services outlines Malaysia’s request for a fifth landing right to Syria.