Call for zero nukes in North Korea
> Asean leaders at summit also want communist nation to return to discussion table
MANILA: Asean leaders, concerned about the situation in the Korean Peninsula, want North Korea to totally drop its nuclear weapons programme.
In a statement yesterday, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said they also wanted North Korea to return to the discussion table to ensure peace and stability in the region.
Najib, who led the Malaysian delegation to the 31st Asean Summit and Related Meetings which ended here yesterday, said deep concern was voiced by him and the other leaders at the Asean-South Korea Summit on Monday, which was also attended by South Korean President Moon Jae-in, Bernama reported.
From the economic aspect, Najib said the Asean leaders stressed that real efforts and cooperation must be enhanced to ensure the target of US$200 billion (RM837.86 billion) worth of trade between Korea and Asean can be achieved by 2020.
“The leaders also touched on the potential of increasing economic integration between them after the AseanSouth Korea Free Trade Agreement has been finalised,” he said.
On the bilateral meeting between him and his Japanese counterpart, Shinzo Abe, on Sunday, Najib said they discussed several matters including the KLSingapore High Speed Rail project, the first high-speed, cross-border rail project in Southeast Asia that was signed between Malaysia and Singapore in December 2016.
Najib said he told Abe that Malaysia would open the tender to parties interested to bid for the project, and the bids would be considered from an overall aspect.
The land acquisition process for the project started on Nov 1, paving the way for the bidding process which is expected to begin by year-end. The infrastructure project for a distance of 350km is expected to attract international bids.
Najib said he and Abe also discussed cooperation in the halal industry, and also thanked the Japanese government for its contribution of two ships to the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.
... AirAsia Group chief executive officer Tan Sri Tony Fernandes (seventh from left) with officials and staff from AirAsia Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines posing with an aircraft featuring the ‘I Love Asean’ livery in Manila yesterday.