Tengku Zafrul: EU Should Implement Principle Of Fair Transition For Sustainable Trade, Investment Practices

Malaysia calls on the European Union (EU) to implement the principle of just transition towards the application of sustainability principles to achieve resilient and sustainable socio-economic improvement.

The call was conveyed by Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz at the Asean Economic Ministers-EU Trade Commissioner Consultation in Semarang, Indonesia, on Aug 20.

In an Instagram post, Tengku Zafrul emphasised that “just transition” requires resources and support to help and provide an appropriate period for the Asean public and private sectors to implement its sustainable development goals (SDGs).

“So, do not discriminate against any Asean party on the basis of non-compliance with sustainable conditions due to lack of resources and capacity,” he said.

Tengku Zafrul believes that the EU needs to avoid implementing unilateral measures which may affect the competitive landscape for domestic companies in Asean.

“This is a comprehensive concept that will produce more beneficial and high-impact results for all,” he noted.

Tenku Zafrul lauded the EU for enabling capacity building for both the Asean public and business sectors through the Asean-EU Strategic Partnership Plan 2023-2027.

For example, the Enhanced Regional EU-Asean Dialogue Instrument (E-READI) initiative includes 34 priority policy areas under five cores, namely economy-trade, SDGs, human rights and gender equality, science and research, as well as environment and climate change.

Tengku Zafrul expressed appreciation for the EU’s contribution to Malaysia’s economic growth, including the recent announcement of an additional investment of RM25 billion by German company, Infineon.

“The EU is one of Asean’s most important trading partners and sources of foreign direct investment.

“Various EU businesses have operated in several Asean countries, including Malaysia, which have led to job creation and business opportunities for the local people,” he said.

For the January-July 2023 period, the total Malaysia-EU trade stood at RM118.6 billion, almost eight per cent of the country’s total trade.

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