Deepening Ties Between Malaysia and Poland
Although Malaysia is a relatively new player in the industrialized market economy, it is now considered to be a valuable trading partner to many countries of the world. Since it gained independence in 1957, it has been one of Asia’s most successful economic stories. From the early 1980s up until the middle of the 1990s, annual growth hit nearly 8 percent. Until 2005, its gross domestic product increased by about 6.5 percent each year and by the year 2012, its economy had grown to be the third largest in Southeast Asia. According to purchasing power parity in relation to gross domestic product, Malaysia comes in number 29 in the world. This has all taken place since the beginning of an economic boom that encouraged a steep development curve in the late twentieth century. In addition, Malaysia is one of only three countries that have direct control over the Strait of Malacca, which makes it a very valuable international trading partner.
Phenomenal Growth in Poland
Poland has witnessed a growth pattern similar to that of Malaysia since the end of the twentieth century. The annual economy has realized quick growth of up to seven percent, which is the fastest of all European countries. Its strong and steady annual growth rate has earned it the nickname of Europe’s “Economic Tiger.” With a population of some 40 million, Poland represents Eastern Europe’s largest market.
Striking Similarities and Goals Shared by Malaysia and Poland
Although Poland has very little in common with Malaysia geographically or historically, the two share uncanny similarities. In regards to physical location, Malaysia is at the center of Southeast Asia while Poland is in the middle of Eastern Europe. With a similar desire to develop industrial and technological ties, so Poland and Malaysia signed trade agreements in 1970. To further develop a working relationship, the Republic of Poland established an embassy in Kuala Lumpur. Since that time, it has also opened the Poland Consulate, located in Kuching, which functions as a satellite office of Poland’s Embassy. Malaysian entrepreneur and businesswoman, Raziah Geneid (née Raziah Mahmud), is an honorary council for the Republic of Poland located in Kuching. In her honorary role, she pushes for development of economic, cultural and technical cooperation between Malaysia and the Republic of Poland. She also takes responsibility for the Polish citizens living in the consular region, including crew members of Polish flag vessels docking in the district or territorial waters.
Creation of the Malaysia-Poland Business Association
With Malaysia and Poland experiencing dynamic growth patterns, new opportunities for trade and investments are available. In an increased effort to take advantage of that growth and deepen the economic ties between the two countries, the Trade and Investment Promotion Section of the Republic of Poland’s Embassy in Kuala Lumpur established the Malaysia-Poland Business Association (MPBA). The association serves as a forum where domestic and international business conditions that affect Polish and Malaysian companies can be discussed. MPBA also works with businesses and chambers of commerce to organize trade missions between the two countries.