(Yicai Global) June 15 -- China Construction Bank has bought nearly MYR200 million (USD51 million) worth of Islam-compliant sukuk bonds since the new Malaysian government took office, making it the biggest foreign buyer of the Southeast Asian country's treasuries, Singapore United Morning Post reported quoted Bai Tian, China's ambassador to Malaysia, as saying yesterday.
Bai made the remarks in a meeting with Tan Yew Sing, president of the Malaysia-China Chamber of Commerce, and others last Friday, per an MCCC announcement released online yesterday.
The country's 92-year-old new Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, who also held the post from 1981 to 2003 and cultivated a good rapport with China, stumped against his predecessor Najib Razak on a platform charging him with presiding over a "kleptocracy" and calling for a slashed budget to shrink debts the free-spending Najib ran up, as the Washington Post reported May 30.
Though not seen as a nascent China foe, Mahathir has pledged to renegotiate "unequal treaties" with the northern neighbor Najib concluded pursuant to Beijing's Belt and Road initiative to revive the nation's ancient trade routes, per the report.
The Chinese government values Sino-Malaysia relations, Bai said, adding that Chinese banks purchase of its bonds as the new Malaysian government seeks to solve its debt problems shows their support for the new administration and reflects the spirit that a friend in need is a friend indeed.
Editor: Ben Armour