Putrajaya's stance on Gaza conflict will not disrupt economic ties with US, Europe — PM

TheEdge Tue, Nov 21, 2023 12:11pm - 1 week View Original

KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 21): Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim assured that Malaysia's firm stance on the war in Gaza will not affect the country's ties with US and European investors.

While acknowledging that there is concern over Malaysia's strong criticism of the Israeli government and its potential adverse impact on the country's economy, Anwar said that the government will continue to monitor the situation.

"I would like to provide an explanation and assurance that I have met several key investors from the US. It appears that their priority is still placed on Malaysia's political stability, clear economic policies and the expediting of approval processes, which are currently undertaken by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida)," Anwar said during the Prime Minister's Question Time in Dewan Rakyat on Tuesday.

Anwar was responding to Aminolhuda Hassan (PH-Sri Gading), who inquired about the outcome of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) summit and Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Economic Leaders' Week 2023 in the US recently.

On Friday (Nov 16), while attending the Apec Economic Leaders' Informal Dialogue and Working Lunch, Anwar spoke out o the bloodbath in Gaza, amid Israel's relentless air and ground attacks, calling for an immediate ceasefire in the Palestine-Israel conflict.

Reflecting on that day, Anwar admitted that it was a difficult decision, but he had no other option but to highlight the humanitarian crisis in Palestine in the presence of US President Joe Biden and other leaders from member economies.

"I chose to voice our stance on behalf of all Malaysians, with respect but firmness, stating that we cannot allow the blatant violations to continue," Anwar added.

In addition to attending the Apec Conference, Anwar said he also held meetings with leading technology giants namely Google, Enovix, Microsoft, TikTok, and TPG.

The meeting and discussion session resulted in a total investment commitment amounting to RM63.02 billion, Anwar added.

Coldplay supports Palestine, says Anwar

Meanwhile, when asked about the government's stance on allowing the British rock band Coldplay to perform here, Anwar said that the band is among groups that support Palestine.

"Coldplay is one of the groups that support Palestine. The previous government had also approved similar concerts without any issues," says Anwar.

Coldplay is scheduled to hold a concert on Wednesday at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Kuala Lumpur. However, a few groups, including the Federal Territories (FT) mufti, have called on the government to cancel the concert, claiming it was insensitive and disrespectful, given the humanitarian crisis currently unfolding in Gaza.

However, Anwar said that while there are certain parties who have suggested the concert be cancelled, there are also lobbyists from the movement supporting Palestinian fighters who are in favour of the concert.

Thus, Anwar said he will discuss this with the FT mufti.

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