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Oleh/By		:	DATO' SERI DR. MAHATHIR BIN MOHAMAD 
Tempat/Venue 	:	SRI PERDANA, KUALA LUMPUR (K.L) 
Tarikh/Date 	: 	04/06/90 
Tajuk/Title  	:	THE OFFICIAL DINNER HOSTED IN 
			HONOUR OF HIS EXCELLENCY MR. V.P. 
			SINGH, PRIME MINISTER OF INDIA 




 Your Excellency Mr. V.P. Singh,
     Prime Minister of India;
Mrs. Singh;
Distinguished Guests;
Ladies and Gentlemen.
    I  am  indeed  happy to be able to welcome you and Mrs.
Singh to Kuala Lumpur.  We feel particularly privileged  be-
cause,  I  am told, this is Your Excellency's first official
visit abroad since assuming office as Prime Minister.
2.   Malaysia and India have a long tradition of  friendship
dating  back much before the colonial era.  India's struggle
for independence was an inspiration to us all.  As the bene-
ficiaries of a common colonial heritage we share a number of
institutions - such as the civil service  and  Parliamentary
democracy - that provide a strong foundation for an enduring
relationship  between  our two countries.   Our peoples have
always interacted freely.  Many Malaysians  attend  tertiary
institutions  in  India, and, India remains an important and
popular destination for Malaysians who aspire to be doctors.
Now, as members of the Commonwealth  we  continue  to  share
many common aspirations.
3.   Over  the  years  our  relations have expanded as mani-
fested in the increasing  trade  and  intensifying  economic
interaction  between  our two countries.  Indian investments
have played a significant role in the growth of the manufac-
turing sector in Malaysia since the 1970s.  Indian  contrac-
tors  are  also involved in construction in Malaysia.  There
exists considerable scope to further enhance  our  bilateral
relations  by  encouraging  investments,  trade, tourism and
cultural exchanges between our  two  countries.    Such  ex-
changes  would  help  promote  understanding between our two
peoples and further consolidate the existing close relation-
ship between us.  We must together  explore  these  opportu-
nities for our mutual benefit.
Your Excellency,
4.   While   our   bilateral   relations  have  always  been
characterised by understanding and warmth,  there  has  also
been  frequent consultations and close cooperation on a num-
ber of issues in the international arena.  It is perhaps na-
tural that we have an identity of  perceptions  on  a  broad
range of subjects of international and economic significance
as  we  share  membership  in many international bodies.  We
have always stood up against  injustices  in  South  Africa,
Palestine  and elsewhere.  We are both committed towards the
objective of constructive South-South Cooperation.   Indeed,
we  share the conviction that this world must be made a bet-
ter place for all.
5.   We are meeting, Mr. Prime  Minister,  at  a  time  when
events  are unfolding in such a dramatic fashion.  Who could
not have foreseen the developments in Eastern Europe.    But
while  we  welcome  change,  it  is essential that we have a
proper appreciation of where the  momentum  of  events  will
lead  us to.   We do not want to be swept willy-nilly by the
euphoria over the changes.  Our hope is that when  the  dust
finally  settles we would see a truly better world where ev-
eryone including us in the South would benefit as well.
6.   Indeed, if there is to be a better tomorrow, I  venture
to  suggest  that  there has never been a more urgent moment
than the present for us to face-up to  the  challenges  that
confront  us.   While the world may seem a little safer now,
we must not be lulled into believing that all is well.  Tyr-
anny and injustice still exist in South  Africa,  Palestine,
and  elsewhere,  poverty and disease still remain as endemic
as ever for most of the world; and, developing countries are
still unable to free themselves  from  the  web  of  indebt-
edness.
Your Excellency,
7.   Touching  on an issue nearer home, we are encouraged by
efforts to end the conflict in  Cambodia.    Although  peace
still  proves  elusive,  the prospect for a settlement looks
bright.  We in ASEAN have always had faith in the  value  of
constructive  cooperation  in the promotion of regional sta-
bility and progress.  We are therefore supportive of the ef-
forts of the South  Asian  countries  to  generate  regional
cooperation and peace through SAARC.  Functional and practi-
cal  cooperation  as  well  as regular consultations between
neighbours, we in ASEAN have learnt, can prove invaluable in
creating the right environment conducive to  regional  peace
and stability.  Malaysia still has intractable problems with
neighbours but we do not allow these to stand in the path of
our cooperation in other fields which can bring mutual bene-
fit.
8.   Malaysia  stands ready to work in concert with India in
the search for solutions for the many problems that continue
to plague the world.   I note with  much  satisfaction  that
India  has a tradition of producing great statesmen who have
been at the fore-front of many initiatives  to  ease  global
tensions  and  to  build  a  more  equitable economic order.
India has always worked for a stable international  environ-
ment  and India's contributions to the developing world is a
matter of record.   I feel confident,  Mr.  Prime  Minister,
that  under  your  leadership  India  will continue in these
endeavours  which  have  become  a   hall-mark   of   Indian
statesmenship.
Excellencies,
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen.
9.   May  I  invite  you  to  join me in a toast to the good
health of His Excellency Prime Minister Mr. V.P.  Singh  and
Mrs.  Singh,  the Government and the people of India, and to
Malaysia-India relations.
     Thank you.

 
 



 
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