Malaysia has significant contributions to make as a rule maker and shaper at the international level

Putrajaya: Wisma Putra Retreat 2023 has recommended that Malaysia should make a significant contribution as a rule-maker and shaper on the international stage and make full use of the “Anwar Ibrahim Factor” to further strengthen its soft power skills

Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Zambry Abdul Kadir said the retreat, which was also attended by members of the Foreign Policy Consultative Council (CCFP), expressed the view that Malaysia cannot sit in the back seat and watch other nations take the lead in shaping the rules and regulations who rule the world.

“The retreat made it clear that we need to take responsibility and become the driving force behind the decisions that affect us all. The retreat felt that Malaysia needs to be proactive in our approach and take the initiative to propose ideas and solutions that address the challenges our world is facing today,” he said.

He was speaking during Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s interaction session with 106 Malaysian heads of diplomatic missions abroad in conjunction with the two-day retreat that ended on Tuesday.

Zambry noted that during the disengagement some parties expressed a desire to claim, or rather reclaim, Malaysia as a middle power.

As Malaysia has long been recognized as a leader on the international stage, he said the retreat recommended that Malaysia continue to act in areas such as peacemaking through the United Nations Peacekeeping Operations (UNPKO); to stand up for the rights of the Ummah; Malaysian Technical Cooperation Program (MTCP) and South-South Cooperation.

“To that end, Wisma Putra will closely examine the pursuit of Malaysia’s status as a middle power,” he said.

Zambry said members of the retreat agreed that Malaysia should make full use of the “Anwar Ibrahim factor” as the prime minister is well known internationally to further enhance its soft power skills and promote its economic strength to harness the human security agenda.

They recommended Malaysia to use the MTCP as a tool to further strengthen its soft power and enhance its science and education diplomacy, including through the Ministry of Higher Education’s internationalization agenda such as Jangkauan Global Malaysia (JGM) and Education Malaysia Global Services (EMGS).

“The retreat emphasized the need for Wisma Putra to enhance global and moral standing through effective public diplomacy to increase Malaysia’s visibility through comprehensive social media communication strategies such as TikTok diplomacy and Insta diplomacy,” he said.

Zambry pointed out that the retreat also recommended the establishment of a task force composed of competent and multidisciplinary experts to implement the internationalization of the six Madani values.

Officially launched by Anwar in January, the Madani concept is based on six pillars – Sustainability, Prosperity, Innovation, Respect, Trust and Compassion.

“The retreat also recommended establishing a platform for dialogue and intellectual discussion about the causes, processes and appropriate responses in countering Islamophobia, religious intolerance and discrimination. In this regard, Malaysia will promote Madani’s values ​​and aspirations by aligning them with our foreign policy,” he said.

Zambry said the withdrawal also discussed Malaysia’s future prospects for the African and Latin American regions.

“The importance of these regions both in terms of their economic potential and their strategic importance; deepening our engagement in these regions; and the possibility of opening more missions in these strategic locations,” he said.

On Malaysia’s ASEAN Chairmanship in 2025, Zambry said the retreat recognizes that Malaysia needs to identify, as quickly as possible, the key priorities and results the country hopes to achieve during the Chairmanship.

“The retreat proposed Malaysia to conduct an in-depth and comprehensive assessment of the fulfillment of ASEAN’s three pillars: (i) Political Security; (ii) economical; and (iii) sociocultural pillars,” he said. -Bernama Malaysia has significant contributions to make as a rule maker and shaper at the international level

Tom Vazquez

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