Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said Monday that China is not a threat but a challenge as it is emerging as an economic giant.
Badawi made the remarks in a special interview over RTM's TV aired Monday. He said China is not a threat but a challenge, besides being an opportunity, for ASEAN in its efforts to develop its economy.
"China's emergence as an economic giant poses a very tough challenge. It is the same with India. Cohesiveness will bring about economic might to ASEAN. ASEAN must be united; integration must be enhanced to see one economic unit with a market of 530 million people who can be regarded as huge in number and capable as well," he said.
ASEAN groups Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar and Cambodia.
"Therefore, there is much to be done in terms of investment. China gets huge foreign direct investment (FDI) and we must strive to attract FDIs to ASEAN and, in doing so, there will be competition with China.
"ASEAN-China friendship in the context of ASEAN+3 (ASEAN plus China, Japan and South Korea) will result in closer friendship and enable us to help one another so that we can taste success," he said.
(Xinhua News Agency December 13, 2005)