2024 set to be a busy year for Malaysia on the international and regional stage

2024 set to be a busy year for Malaysia on the international and regional stage

KUALA LUMPUR — As Malaysia steps into 2024, the nation eagerly anticipates a plethora of international events that promise to shape diplomatic relations, foster global cooperation, and influence the geopolitical landscape.

A key highlight of this dynamic year is the momentous celebration of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Malaysia and China, spanning the entire year. This milestone marks half a century of collaboration, trade, and cultural exchange between the two nations, laying the foundation for a future of strengthened ties.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim previously extended an invitation to Chinese President Xi Jinping to visit Malaysia and mark the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries in 2024.

Xi was last in Malaysia in 2013 when the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Agreement was signed between Malaysia and China.

The year 2024 will also see Uganda hosting two important international summits scheduled for January, namely the 19th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) and the Third South Summit organised under the framework of Group 77 and China, a loose alliance of developing countries.

These gatherings will provide Malaysia with a platform to assert its diplomatic prowess, advocate for the interests of developing nations, and reinforce its commitment to non-alignment in international affairs.

In the realm of international alliances, January brings a historic development as Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates have been invited to join the BRICS coalition, ushering in a new era of collaboration among major emerging economies. The move holds implications for Malaysia’s diplomatic strategy, presenting opportunities for expanded economic partnerships and regional stability.

As Malaysians turn their attention to neighbouring countries, Indonesia will be gearing up for its presidential election on Feb 14, contributing to the evolving political landscape in Southeast Asia.

In March, Malaysia will be actively engaged in regional affairs, participating in the Asean-Australia Special Commemorative Summit in Melbourne to commemorate 50 years of partnership between Asean and Australia.

The political landscape takes centre stage in March with presidential elections in Russia and Ukraine, where Russian President Vladimir Putin will seek a fifth term as Russian president, looking to extend his reign until at least 2030 in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Malaysia will keenly observe the outcomes as they may influence global geopolitics and regional dynamics, affecting diplomatic engagements and alliances.

April to May bring the spotlight to India as the world’s largest democracy conducts its general elections, where the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led coalition is likely to be re-elected, ensuring policy continuity.

In June, Malaysians will join the global community in watching the European Parliament Election, an event that could impact Malaysia-EU relations and trade partnerships. The 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris in July and August will not only captivate the world with sporting excellence but also provide a stage for international cooperation and cultural exchange.

As Laos chairs the Asean Summits in 2024, Malaysians look forward to engaging in discussions that will shape the regional agenda. By the end of the year, Malaysia will also be preparing to take up the Asean chair in 2025.

The UN General Assembly in September provides an opportunity for Malaysia to voice its stance on global issues and contribute to discussions on sustainable development, peace, and security.

In October and November, Malaysia will turn its attention to Lima, Peru, as the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation takes place. This summit will be crucial for advancing Malaysia’s economic interests and fostering collaboration with key Pacific Rim economies.

Lastly, the year concludes with the 2024 United States (US) presidential election in November. Malaysians will closely observe the outcome, recognising the impact of US policies on global affairs and the potential implications for Malaysia-US relations.

The highly anticipated election will witness incumbent President Joe Biden, member of the Democratic Party, and his predecessor Donald Trump, a member of the Republican Party, running for re-election.

In summary, 2024 promises to be a dynamic year for Malaysia on the international stage, with a multitude of events shaping the nation’s diplomatic, economic, and political landscape.

As Malaysians look forward to these developments, the nation stands ready to actively engage in and contribute to the global dialogue.

–Bernama

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