Courtesy of Arkib Negara
Despite the long history of Malaysia-China trade relations, direct bilateral trade only began on a serious level after 1971 following a breakthrough in Malaysia's China policy initiated by the second prime minister, Tun Abdul Razak Hussain. The first unofficial visit to Beijing was made in May 1971 by the National Trading Corporation (Perbadanan Nasional or PERNAS) and led by its head, Tengku Razaleigh (Shee, 2004). Total trade with China stood at a mere RM105.6 million in 1971, but ballooned to RM1.6 billion in 1980.
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