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Malaysian envoy initiates tech collaboration with biz leaders, public sectors in Phl

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By Marinel Peroy 

Marking the diamond (60th Year) anniversary of the Philippines and Malaysia’s bilateral relations, Malaysian Ambassador to the Philippines Dato’ Abdul Malik Melvin Castelino kept his word the first time he met with the Philippine media last May 2023 and revealed his plan to be more active and establish meaningful economic collaborations and closer cooperation

Already, Ambassador Castelino started one of his programs by helping the country to get proper Halal certification for the manufacturers and exporters that will be globally recognized in Muslim countries.

With the “Dex Connex Philippines 2024” a business matching event that was held from March 5 to 6, 2024, paved the way to nurture collaboration and mutual growth between tech companies from Malaysia and the Philippines.

By partnering with the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) the Embassy of Malaysia in the Philippines brought together leaders in business and government sectors and explore potential collaboration between Malaysians and Filipino businessmen.

Held at the Embassy of Malaysia in Makati City, the two-day business matching opportunity is an annual project of the Malaysian Embassy that helps expand digital export facilitation. Through Dex Connex, Malaysian companies were assisted to connect with the local Philippine ecosystem ranging from various channel partners, government agencies, associations, venture capital, and corporations, among others. This also served as an avenue to strengthen the bilateral trade relations between Malaysia and the Philippines.

During his speech, H.E. Dato’ Abdul Malik Melvin Castelino shared the increased Malaysian presence in the Philippine digital economy, highlighting the importance of collaboration that helps in job creation and economic growth. 

“Digital economy holds tremendous potential in Malaysia and the Philippines. Collaboration between the high-tech companies in the region can create synergies, enhance competitiveness, and drive innovation for mutual benefit — Malaysia is committed to strengthening this relationship,” said Castelino. 

The Malaysian envoy also expressed that this program with MDEC serves as a private platform for discussing technology ideas, knowledge sharing, and building networks. 

On the other hand, Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) CEO Mahadhir Aziz shared that the “ASEAN is a thriving ecosystem” with certain initiatives focusing on digital to infrastructure developments. Aziz also shared his participation at the ASEAN’s Digital Ministers’ Meeting in Singapore which focused on building an inclusive digital ecosystem from data exchange privacy, cybersecurity, among others in the region. Hence, this yearly program with the Philippines 

According to DTI’s report, Malaysia ranks as the 9th out of 230 trading partners of the Philippines in 2023. Top Philippine commodities include exports on digital monolithic circuits and semiconductor devices, while the country imports palm oil and light petroleum oils with Malaysia. In addition, DTI is building an industry 4.0 pilot factory that will provide advanced manufacturing technologies from robotics to cyber-physical systems which various local enterprises, MSMEs, and the academe can assess. 

Before the business matching, several Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between participating were exchanged that would help foster partnerships and increase digital export opportunities for both Malaysia and the Philippines.

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