European Union External Action

//NEWSLETTER// EU DELEGATION TO MALAYSIA

22/12/2021 - 10:30
News stories

Ed. 006 22 December 2021

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BI-MONTHLY NEWSLETTER


WE MOVED TO A NEW OFFICE!

The European Union Delegation to Malaysia has moved into a brand new office! Situated at Naza Tower in Kuala Lumpur, the new green office will be an inspiration to continuing the efforts to strengthen EU-Malaysia relations. Have a sneak peek at the new office here.


EU AMBASSADOR TO MALAYSIA, H.E. MICHALIS ROKAS CALLS ON THE
MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS, DATO’ SAIFUDDIN ABDULLAH

Ambassador Michalis Rokas presented NBA star Giannis Antetokounmpo’s jersey to the
Malaysian Foreign Minister YB Dato’ Saifuddin Abdullah during the courtesy call. (Photo credit to Saifuddin Abdullah’s Twitter account)

Ambassador Michalis Rokas made a courtesy call to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dato’ Saifuddin Abdullah on 25 November 2021. Rokas and Saifuddin discussed and affirmed their commitment to further strengthen partnership between Malaysia and the EU in several areas including palm oil, youth and women empowerment, cybersecurity, peaceful coexistence and cultural diplomacy.


AMBASSADOR ROKAS COURTESY CALL ON THE MINISTER OF PLANTATIONS AND COMMODITIES,
DATUK ZURAIDA KAMARUDDIN

Cordial exchange between Ambassador Michalis Rokas and Plantations and Commodities Minister, Datuk Zuraida Kamaruddin.
(Photo credit to Zuraida Kamaruddin’s Twitter account)

On 23rd November 2021, Ambassador Michalis Rokas had an encouraging and forward-looking discussion with the Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities (MPIC), Zuraida Kamaruddin, covering many aspects of potential EU-Malaysia cooperation: labour standards, productivity, circular economy and forests, as well as agreeing to engage more and overcome existing misconceptions around palm oil.


EU’s ‘Global Gateway’ Infrastructure

The European Commission and the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy launched the Global Gateway, the new European Strategy to boost smart, clean and secure links in digital, energy, transport, health, education and research systems across the world. It stands for sustainable and trusted connections that work for people and the planet, to tackle the most pressing global challenges, from climate change and protecting the environment, to improving health security and boosting competitiveness and global supply chains. Global Gateway aims to mobilise up to €300 billion (approximately RM1.4 trillion) in investments between 2021 and 2027 to underpin a lasting global recovery, taking into account our partners’ needs and the EU's own interests.

To know more about Global Gateway, click here.


European Green Deal

The European Commission adopted three new initiatives that are necessary for making the European Green Deal a reality. The Commission is proposing new rules to curb EU-driven deforestation, as well as new rules to facilitate intra-EU waste shipments to promote circular economy and tackle the export of illegal waste and waste challenges to third countries.


WORK VISIT TO THE STATE OF PENANG

(Ambassador Rokas received a souvenir from Penang Chief Minister, Chow Kon Yeow)

(Rokas and staff members of the EU Delegation had an audience with the
Governor of Penang, Tun Dato’ Seri UtamaAhmad Fuzi bin Haji Abdul Razak)

On 17-20 November 2021, Ambassador Michalis Rokas visited Penang with the goal of exploring the potential for collaboration, to promote good relations in economic, political and cultural areas by providing a platform for open dialogue and networking between the EU and Penang.  Rokas met with the Governor of Penang, Tun Dato’ Seri Utama Ahmad Fuzi bin Haji Abdul Razak. They explored avenues of cooperation between Malaysia and the European Union. Another meeting was with Penang’s Chief Minister, Chow Kon Yeow, discussing Penang – European Union cooperation on climate change mitigation and adaptation, circular economy, digitalisation, connectivity and green financing.


COURTESY CALL WITH DIRECTOR GENERAL OF CUSTOMS, DATO’ SRI ABDUL LATIF

On 1st November, Ambassador Michalis Rokas and colleagues of the Delegation, Francesco Floris and Pekka Penttila, had a courtesy call with Dato' Sri Abdul Latif, the Director General of the Royal Malaysian Customs Department (JKDM). They discussed trade facilitation for European Union businesses in Malaysia, with hopes of strengthening diplomatic relations as well as creating closer cooperation between Malaysia and the European Union. The meeting covered issues of economic and social nature in line with the function and role of JKDM in shaping a more sustainable climate and economic environment to ensure national prosperity.


ROAD TO GLASGOW-KUNMING: COMBATING CLIMATE CHANGE

15 October 2021, the WWF-Malaysia collaborated with the Delegation of the European Union to Malaysia in hosting a virtual conference titled ‘Combating Climate Change and Biodiversity Loss in Malaysia’, on the road to two important international events, the conference of parties in Glasgow (COP26) and Kunming.

Ambassador Michalis Rokas, was joined by the Chairman of WWF Malaysia, Tunku Ali Redhauddin, the Minister of Finance of Malaysia, Tengku Zafrul, and the Secretary General of the Malaysian Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, Datuk Zuninah Pawanteh. He delivered the opening remarks in which he mentioned that the EU wants to be carbon-neutral by 2050 and achieve the intermediary target of reducing GHG emissions in 2030 to 55%.


Watch Ambassador Rokas’ remarks here: Road to Glasgow-Kunming : Combating Climate Change and Biodiversity Loss in Malaysia conference - YouTube


THE ROLE OF FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS IN PROMOTING SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS AND HUMAN RIGHTS

On 2 October 2021, Ambassador Michalis Rokas spoke on the responsible trade practices and sustainable supply claims during a webinar organized by the Malaysian Business Council for Sustainable Development and the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law.

Ambassador Rokas’ speech: The Role of Free Trade Agreements in Promoting Sustainable Business - YouTube


 

12TH MALAYSIA PLAN

On 27 September 2021, the Malaysian government presented its 2021-2025 development strategy, the 12th Malaysia Plan, to the legislative branch. It is built around three overarching themes consisting of Resettling the Economy, Strengthening Security, Wellbeing and Inclusivity as well as Advancing Sustainability. It presents four policy enablers and 14 ‘game changers’ to spearhead government policy actions and further identifies 36 priority areas and 118 strategies with the aspiration of to achieve “a prosperous, inclusive, sustainable Malaysia” by 2025.


 

BUDGET 2022

On 29th October 2022, the Ministry of Finance has announced the RM332.1 billion Budget 2022, with federal revenue projected to achieve RM234 billion, or 5.9% more than 2021. 3/4 of its revenue, is expected to come from just tax revenue worth RM171.3 billion. 

Budget 2022 highlights (summary) | Ministry of Finance


MALAYSIA’S GDP DATA FOR THE THIRD QUARTER OF 2021

On 12 October 2021, Department of Statistics Malaysia released the data for Malaysia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which has decreased 4.5% for Q3 from a previous quarter’s growth of 16.1%. The economic contraction reflects re-imposition of nationwide containment measures following high COVID infection rates in July – August, which restricted non-essential manufacturing, weakened consumer spending and lead to lower government spending.

Department of Statistics Malaysia Official Portal (dosm.gov.my)


AMBASSADOR ROKAS’ VISIT TO THE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL

Ambassador Michalis Rokas made a working visit to the National Security Council. He met with Director-General Datuk Haji Rodzi, where they discussed the prospects of enhanced EU-Malaysia cooperation in the framework of the EU’s Indo-Pacific Strategy, focusing on maritime and cyber security. 


AIBD- SAFE AND FAIR REGIONAL MEDIA DIALOGUE ON WOMEN’S LABOUR MIGRATION

Ambassador Michalis Rokas gave the opening remarks at the Regional Media Dialogue on Women’s Labour Migration Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development on 30 November 2021. This Dialogue was organised by the International Labour Organisation and UN Women in the framework of Safe and Fair, which is a programme supporting women migrant workers and funded under the EU-UN spotlight initiative to fight violence against women.

In his opening remarks, Rokas highlighted the importance of the European Union being attached to the Spotlight Initiative, and expressed his appreciation to the Safe and Fair programme. 

 


UNIVERSITY TEKNOLOGI MALAYSIA’S UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT’S FORUM 2021

Ambassador Rokas delivered the keynote address at the forum, titled ‘Fostering Closer Relations in Higher Education between the European Union and Malaysia’

Full address: University President's Forum 2021 | Facebook live


 

EU-ISIS MALAYSIA EVENT ON THE EU’S INDO-PACIFIC STRATEGY

On 2 December 2021, the Delegation of the European Union to Malaysia in collaboration with the Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Malaysia, introduced the EU Strategy for Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific to a group of Malaysian stakeholders.  The event featured welcoming remarks by Alizan Mahadi, senior director (research) ISIS Malaysia, and a presentation on the EU strategy by H.E. Ambassador Michalis Rokas, Head of the EU Delegation to Malaysia. 

EU-ISIS Event on the Indo-Pacific  | ISIS Malaysia


INTERATIONAL ANTI-CORRUPTION DAY 2021

In conjunction with the International Anti-Corruption Day on 9 December, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) hosted a dialogue session with EUROCHAM Malaysia. The session was attended by Deputy Chief Commissioner, Dato' Seri Ahmad Khusairi who highlighted the challenges and plans to improve MACC's work in Malaysia and cooperating closely with international agencies in the fight against corruption. Head of Trade section of the Delegation, Francesco Floris, participated in the event.


HUMAN RIGHTS DAY 2021

Political Counsellor Virpi Kukkasniemi-Leino was the guest speaker during a webinar organised by the Bar Council of Malaysia in conjunction with the International Human Rights Day entitled “Advancing Human Rights and Equality in Malaysia” on 10th December 2021. During the event, Mrs. Kukkasniemi-Leino highlighted that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights remains a manifesto for today. She said, “Achieving human rights is not only an imperative of human dignity; it is a cornerstone of democracy, peace and security, and sustainable development.”


 

DEFENSIVE DRIVING TRAINING

On 22 October, the Delegation staff took part in a defensive driving training. The exercise aimed at equipping our staff with riding experience and safe riding tips, while getting to know the new team better.


ROYAL PROTOCOL AND ETIQUETTE TRAINING WITH Y.M. TUNKU FAUZI BIN TUNKU ABDUL MALEK

The European Union Delegation to Malaysia enjoyed a Royal protocol training by Y.M. Tunku Adj Prof Dato’ Sr Dr Fauzi bin Tunku Dato’ Abdul Malek Al Haj from the Kedah Royal House. Y.M. Tunku Fauzi was joined by Dr. Olivier Cane. The Delegation is extremely grateful for their insights and advice.


EUROPEAN FILM FESTIVAL 2021

Celebrating its 22nd year in Malaysia, the European Film Festival (EUFF) was held virtually again due to COVID-19 restrictions. Over the course of a month from 15 November to 15 December, 20 selected movies that portrayed the diversity of Europe were streamed free of charge. The closing reception for EUFF was held at TGV Cinemas Sunway Velocity Mall on 15th of December.

The Delegation of the European Union to Malaysia would like to express its gratitude to our partners; EU member states embassies, the Goethe-Institute, Alliance Francaise and our media partners; Malaysiakini, Malay Mail and Awani Online for their unwavering support in making the film festival a success.

Watch Ambassador Rokas’ welcome speech here: Welcome to EUFF 2021!

 
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