Malaysia stands to gain as Russia increasingly seeks to bolster economic and diplomatic ties with Southeast Asia
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak arrives at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Leaders’ dinner in Vladivostok during last month’s Apec Summit.
With the most powerful leaders in Asia descending on Russia’s eastern port city, President Vladimir Putin seized the opportunity to strengthen ties with the Pacific Rim, as Russia increasingly looks eastward after decades of European orientation.
Malaysia already has a growing presence in Russia’s oil and gas industry as well as the timber sector. In 2011, trade between the two countries was valued at $1 billion, a figure that looks set to rise as Russia cosies up to Southeast Asian nations.
The 21-member Apec forum accounts for more than 40% of the world’s population, 54% of its economic output and 44% of global trade.
Malaysia is set to host the Apec annual leaders’ summit in 2020, 22 years after doing so for the first time.