South China Sea claims will not hinder ASEAN-China relations – Saifuddin

By , in Asia Nation on .

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 23 — Though a number of ASEAN countries are involved in territorial claims with China in the South China Sea, that should not be an issue that could hinder the relations between China and the 10-member grouping, says Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah. 

The minister said he believed that the economic, education, and many other issues would prevail over the contentious claims through the ASEAN-China Dialogue Relations, which now has been elevated to a comprehensive strategic partnership. 

I believe there are more to be expected from the economic realm and socio-cultural realm of the comprehensive strategic partnership,” he told a press conference after accompanying prime minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to the ASEAN-China Special Summit to commemorate the 30th anniversary of ASEAN-China Dialogue Relations held via video conferencing today.

south china sea

The special summit was co-chaired by the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, and China’s President Xi Jinping. 

Saifuddin said that during the intervention at the summit, Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob had reiterated Malaysia’s consistent stand on the South China Sea and wanted the contentious issue to be handled peacefully, constructively, and rationally through dialogues and negotiations.

Malaysia emphasized that all nations should be committed to preserving the South China Sea as a sea of peace, stability, and trade,” he said.

NMT as reported by Bernama

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