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international

M’sia, Australia to work closely on cybersecurity


KUALA LUMPUR: The importance of cooperation in cybersecurity was among the issues discussed at the 4th Malaysia-Australia Annual Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AFMM) here.

Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said cybersecurity is now the leading non-traditional security threat in the world, involving many sectors such as corporate, government and defence.

“There was a general understanding, between the two of us, that our people should start talking to each other on some of these issues.

“I offered the professional agency that we have – Cybersecurity Malaysia – as probably the organisation to start the discussion rolling,” he told a joint press conference after co-chairing AFMM with his Australian counterpart Senator Marise Payne.

The meeting was the first AFMM after the Prime Ministers of Malaysia and Australia launched the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP) on Jan 27 this year.

Payne said Australia launched an International Cybersecurity and Critical Technologies Engagement Strategy earlier this year, and the country wants to work closely with Malaysia on that.

“We are both very conscious that our communities need to be safe online. That includes through the good and the bad of the impact of social media on our communities, particularly on girls and women.

“This is something that I look forward to working together with Malaysia,” she said.

On bilateral trade, Payne acknowledged that there has been some decline, but added that Australia and Malaysia have the advantage of the CSP, which enables both countries to work under its pillar of economic prosperity, reported Bernama.

“We have a high degree of complementarity between our two economies and using this CSP to maximise (it) is the key,” she said.

Apart from the existing free trade agreements involving both countries, namely the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement and the Asean-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Area, Payne said Australia had also ratified the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership that would be part of driving trade and economic recovery.

Payne is on a three-day working visit to Malaysia until today.

During her visit, she is also scheduled to hold meetings with Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein and Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

Published : November 07, 2021

By : The Star