Malaysia and France launch business council

7th March 2005, Comments 0 comments

KUALA LUMPUR, March 7 (AFP) - France's External Trade Minister Francois Loos on Monday launched a joint business council with Malaysia to boost bilateral trade.

KUALA LUMPUR, March 7 (AFP) - France's External Trade Minister Francois Loos on Monday launched a joint business council with Malaysia to boost bilateral trade.

France is Malaysia's fourth largest trading partner within the European Union and 16th largest trading partner in the world.

"Malaysia counts among the 25 target countries in which the development of the French economic presence is deemed crucial for the future of the French economy," Loos said in a speech at the launch of the council.

Malaysia was one of two target country for France within the 10 nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) along with Thailand, he said.

The business council would "foster the cooperation between the companies of our two countries," he said.

"There is still considerable scope for increasing the volume of two-way trade and enhancing investments between Malaysia and France," Malaysia's Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister Ahmad Husni Mohamad Hanadziah said.

ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

According to official Malaysian figures, trade between Malaysia and France in 2004 rose to USD 3.3 million (EUR 2.5 million) from USD 2.9 million (EUR 2.19 million) in 2003.

There are some 180 French companies in Malaysia including cement-maker Lafarge and retailing giant Carrefour.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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