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Digital and Green Cooperation between Singapore and Malaysia

The first Annual Ministerial Dialogue (1st AMD), which was held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, was co-chaired by YB Senator Tengku Datuk Seri Utama Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz, Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Malaysia (MITI), and Gan Kim Yong, Minister for Trade and Industry, Singapore (MTI).

The connection between Singapore and Malaysia is cordial, and both countries’ economies are closely intertwined. The bilateral trade between the two nations, which grew significantly by 37.6% from 2021 to 2022 is the second-largest trading relationship between the two nations.

Additionally, Singapore stands out as one of Malaysia’s main suppliers of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), accounting for 8.3% of Malaysia’s overall FDI in 2022.

Recognising the strength and potential of Malaysia-Singapore economic relations, both Ministers decided to hold the Annual Ministerial Dialogue on a regular basis to increase bilateral trade and investments between the two nations and to fortify ties between the officials from both Ministries.

The two Frameworks on Cooperation in the Digital Economy and Green Economy agreed upon between the two countries during YAB Malaysia Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s recent visit to Singapore were examined by the Ministers during the first AMD.

The Ministers announced a new task force to investigate promoting cross-border business trade, leveraging Singapore’s Business sans Borders initiative and the MATRADE Digital Trade Platform, which was launched by the YB Minister of MITI this June.

The task force includes representatives from MITI and the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE), as well as MTI, the Infocomm Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA), and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

The Ministers praised the combined effort between MATRADE and Enterprise Singapore (EnterpriseSG) in a Capacity Development Programme for Exporters, aimed at helping exporters’ sustainability transition, under the Framework on Cooperation in the Green Economy.

As part of the plan, there will be a series of engagements between Singapore and Malaysian businesses to discuss sustainability experiences and solutions. The first session, slated to begin in July 2023, will focus on sustainability reporting systems and green financing.

Enhancing digital and green cooperation frameworks between nations such as Singapore and Malaysia is essential for promoting sustainable economic growth, fostering innovation, and addressing shared environmental challenges.

These frameworks facilitate collaboration, the exchange of knowledge, and the development of collaborative initiatives that leverage technology and sustainable practices to generate economic and environmental benefits for both countries.

Singapore and Malaysia can create a more resilient and sustainable future while maximising economic opportunities in the digital and green sectors if they collaborate to increase digital connectivity, promote cross-border trade, and support green initiatives.

Further, OpenGov Asia earlier reported that the ministers of Chile, New Zealand, Singapore, the Digital Economy Partnership Agreement (DEPA), and the Republic of Korea (ROK) recently convened to discuss the ROK’s participation in the DEPA.

The DEPA parties are confident that the talks about the ROK joining this world-leading agreement have come to an end positively. This makes the ROK the first partner to join outside of founding members Chile, New Zealand, and Singapore.

With shared values and open, interoperable standards, the DEPA gives its Parties a keyway to work together in new areas that could affect digital trade. The country is glad to have the ROK as the fourth member of the DEPA and is looking forward to working with the ROK on projects that will help both companies and people.


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