Speechs in the year
Tempat/Venue 	: 	SAO PAULO, BRAZIL 
Tarikh/Date 	: 	01/07/91 

 Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
    Let  me  first  and  foremost  take this opportunity to
thank the organisers for inviting me to address this distin-
guished gathering.  I am happy to note the growing  interest
of  Brazilian  businessmen  in looking for possible business
opportunities in Malaysia.
2.   As you know, trade relationship between our  two  coun-
tries   has  shown  encouraging improvement in recent years.
Brazil represents   Malaysia's largest  trading  partner  in
South  America.  Malaysia's total trade with Brazil amounted
to US$328 million in  1990.    This  accounts  for  half  of
Malaysia's  total  trade  with  South  America  amounting to
US$661.4 million in the same year.   Two-way  trade  between
Brazil  and Malaysia has grown from US$78 million in 1985 to
US$328 million in 1990.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
3.   Malaysia has an open economy in which trade assumes  an
important  role.   Total exports amounted to US$29.4 billion
in 1990.  The export sector contributes about 69 per cent to
the Gross Domestic Product of the country.   Malaysia  main-
tains  trade  relationship  with  all  the  countries of the
4.   In the past, the Malaysian export sector was  dominated
by  the  export  of  minerals and primary commodities.  With
rapid industrialisation the export of manufactured  products
today  contributes  about  60 per cent of exports.  Malaysia
also maintains  a  substantial  import  trade  amounting  to
US$29.3  billion  in 1990.   They are mainly food, machinery
and transport equipment and industrial  components  for  the
manufacturing sector.
5.   In view of the importance of international trade to the
economy,  Malaysia  is  committed to an open economic system
and we wish to strengthen further our  economic  links  with
our trading partners, including Brazil.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
6.    Malaysia, as a developing country, strongly supports a
more liberal international trading environment.  In this re-
gard,   our  commitment  is  reflected  in  our  efforts  to
liberalise further our import regime consistent with  devel-
opment  needs.   Liberalisation inter-alia would take on the
form of tariff reduction and deregulation in economic activ-
7.   As part of the process  to  facilitate  the  successful
conclusion  of  the  Uruguay  Round, Malaysia is already ac-
tively involved in cooperation  with  like-minded  groupings
such  as  the  Cairns  Group  and  G  15 which also includes
Brazil.  In our effort to  strengthen  multilateral  cooper-
ation, Malaysia is also active in promoting regional cooper-
ation.  At the regional level, the Association of South East
Asian  Nations  (ASEAN),  of which Malaysia is a member, has
made much progress in the field of trade and industrial  co-
8.   At  the  East Asian regional level, Malaysia has initi-
ated the formation of the East Asia Economic  Group  (EAEG).
EAEG  has  the  objective  of enhancing economic cooperation
among East Asian countries and to pave the way  for  a  more
open multilateral trading system.  Apart from this immediate
objective, the EAEG will continue to serve as a consultative
forum  within  the  region  to enhance trade and investment.
The EAEG will be GATT consistent and will not be  a  trading
bloc.   In this regard, the EAEG will not only be beneficial
to the countries in the region but also to countries outside
the region, through the potential trade creating effects  of
the Group.
9.   In relation to regional cooperation, we note that South
America  has also intensified its efforts in enhancing coop-
eration by setting the time frame for the operation  of  the
Andean  Pact and the MERCOSUR.  We view these regional coop-
eration programmes positively as they seek to enhance  trade
and  economic  cooperation along accepted multilateral trade
principles embodied in the GATT.  Apart from these  develop-
ments in regional cooperation, there are also other develop-
ments  taking  place  in  the  developed  world  such as the
formation of the Single European Market and the North Ameri-
can Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Ladies and gentlemen,
10.  In this interdependent world, developing countries such
as ours are dependent in many ways on  the  developed  world
for trade and investment.  The developed countries, however,
have  their  own  regional  groupings and, at the same time,
their own economic problems which do worry us.  We hope that
they will set a good example for the developing countries by
structuring their regional grouping and by finding solutions
to their problems consistent with the free trade principle.
11.  While the developed world is important to the  develop-
ing  countries as a market for their products, we should not
forget the tremendous potential benefits that could  be  de-
rived through greater South-South cooperation.  Therefore in
our  quest  for  economic development, cooperation among the
developing countries should merit priority  attention  also.
Vast potential and opportunities for the furtherance of eco-
nomic and trade gains exist in the developing world.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
12.  The  visit  of the Malaysian delegation to Brazil is to
enable Malaysian businessmen and entrepreneurs to  meet  and
hold  discussions with their Brazilian counterparts on busi-
ness and joint venture opportunities as well as to  identify
and pursue common areas of interest.  I am confident that we
can  succeed in this effort in view of the common goals that
we have.
13.  Brazil is the largest economy in the region.  Its econ-
omy is rapidly growing involving a wide range of  activities
in  the  production  and  exports  of  minerals, natural re-
sources, agricultural development as well as  manufacturing.
In  many ways, our economies complement each other and there
are many areas for cooperation.  There is certainly  immense
potential  for  strengtening of economic relations.  In this
respect, Malaysia looks forward with confidence to  increase
trade with Brazil, both imports and exports.
14.  Another potential area for economic cooperation between
our  two  countries which can be explored further is invest-
ment.  Malaysia has a liberal and  attractive  programme  to
attract foreign direct investments, both in terms of capital
and technology.  The rapid industrial growth achieved in re-
cent  years  is  very much due to our open policy of getting
foreign involvement in our economy.  Brazil has a large  and
sophisticated  industrial base backed by domestic technology
and therefore Brazilian industrialists are  well  placed  to
look at investment opportunities in Malaysia to set up manu-
facturing  base  to cater for the national and regional mar-
kets.  Malaysia is located in the heart of the fast  growing
Asia  Pacific  region  and Malaysia offers an attractive lo-
cation for Brazil to expand its economic relations with  the
15.  Malaysia    also    pursues   an   active   policy   of
privatisation.   In this  privatisation  programme,  partic-
ipation  by  foreign  investors is also welcome by providing
the capital and technology in the privatised projects.
16.  Our achievements made in the plantation and mining sec-
tors and in recent years in the development of the  manufac-
turing  sector  has enabled Malaysia to develop expertise in
manufacturing, plantation  management,  mineral  exploration
and  extraction,  construction  and engineering consultancy.
We are ready to cooperate with Brazilian businessmen and in-
dustrialists as we have done with many other countries.
17.  I am heartened by the  tremendous  potentials  for  the
strengthening of bilateral cooperation over a broad range of
economic activities.  While Government can provide the envi-
ronment and conditions conducive to facilitate such a devel-
opment,  it  is  the  role  of  the  private sectors of both
countries to get the business moving.  In this regard, I  am
confident  that  there will be concrete discussions on busi-
ness opportunities among the business leaders of both  coun-
tries  and  follow-up  action will be taken to translate the
business potentials into actual business transactions.