Bangladesh–Malaysia relations

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Bangladesh–Malaysia relations
Map indicating locations of Bangladesh and Malaysia


Diplomatic mission
Bangladeshi High Commission, Kuala LumpurMalaysian High Commission, Dhaka
High Commissioner Md. Shahidul IslamHigh Commissioner Nur Ashikin Mohd Taib

Bangladesh–Malaysia relations (Bengali: বাংলাদেশ-মালয়েশিয়া সম্পর্ক Bānlādēśa-mālaẏēśiẏā samparka; Malay: Hubungan Bangladesh–Malaysia; Jawi: هوبوڠن بنجلاديش–مليسيا) refers to the relations between the two countries. Both enjoy strong fraternal relations. Malaysia has a high commission in Dhaka and Bangladesh has a high commission in Kuala Lumpur.[1][2] Both nations are members of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the Developing 8 Countries and the Non-Aligned Movement. Malaysia was one of the first countries to recognise the independence of Bangladesh in 1971.[3]

Two-way trade between the two countries stood at US$1.19 billion in 2012.[4] Malaysia is also one of the largest foreign investors in Bangladesh.[5]


On 24 February 1972, Malaysia, along with its neighbour Indonesia, recognised the independence of Bangladesh, being among the first Muslim countries to do so.[6] In 1999, the Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has visited Bangladesh while in 2000, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina visited Malaysia.[7] Both visits has opened up new vistas of co-operation and to ensured the continuing export of skilled manpower from Bangladesh to Malaysia.[7]

Labour issues[edit]

In 2007, Malaysia has banned the imports of Bangladeshi workers into the country after hundreds of them were stranded at an airport because their employers has failed to collect them promptly.[7] This ended with a demonstration in Kuala Lumpur by Bangladeshi workers demanding payments and better conditions but later resolved by both governments.[7] The Malaysian government also placed a similar restriction in 1999 but lifted the ban in 2007 by approving an initial intake of 300,000 workers.[7] There is also some issue relating to socials with the workers, which has causing a trouble in Malaysia with a number of them have involved in crime mainly on rape and some theft.[8][9][10][11][12][13] Between 2009–2012, Malaysia had stopped hiring workers from Bangladesh but there are still many of the labours enter the country illegally.[14] Until 2013, there are around 320,000 Bangladeshis working on many sectors in the country.[15]

In 2014, the Malaysian cabinet decided to open all sectors apart from plantations in the Malaysian economy for Bangladeshi workers to work.[16]

Economic relations[edit]

The bilateral relations between the two countries also enhance in the sector of economic. In 2012, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed by both countries for collaboration in the construction of the Padma Bridge which has been consider as the largest bridge in Bangladesh once it finished.[17] Much more, a free trade agreement also has been proposed for both countries to boost the pharmaceutical, garment and tourism sector of Bangladesh, while Malaysia would benefit immensely from future infrastructure projects dished out by the Bangladeshi government.[18] Malaysia also consider as the third largest investment partner in Bangladesh after India and Pakistan with the Malaysian companies invests in the sectors of telecommunications, power generation, textile and financial sectors which worth around MYR558.86 million.[5] Since 2010, all the Bangladesh workers in Malaysia had sent home a total of MYR3 billion, which is the highest compared with other workers from Indonesia (MYR2.9 billion), Nepal (MYR1.9 billion), India (MYR625 million) and the Philippines (MYR561 million).[15] The top 5 exports of Malaysia's products to Bangladesh are such as refined petroleum products, palm oil, chemicals products, iron and steel and electrical and electronics products while the major import of Bangladeshi's are textiles and apparel, refined petroleum products, vegetables, processed food, seafood and also electrical and electronics products.[19]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bangladesh High Commission Kuala Lumpur". High Commission of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. Archived from the original on 13 February 2014. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  2. ^ "Official Website of High Commission of Malaysia, Dhaka". Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  3. ^ "Najib's visit to Bangladesh will further enhance bilateral ties – Bernama". Bernama. The Malaysian Insider. 16 November 2013. Retrieved 22 March 2013.
  4. ^ "Bangladesh-Malaysia Bilateral Trade Statistics" (PDF). Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industry. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 March 2014. Retrieved 22 March 2014.
  5. ^ a b Rahimy Rahim (17 November 2013). "Ties high on Najib's agenda for first Bangladesh visit". The Star. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  6. ^ Salahuddin Ahmed (2004). Bangladesh: Past and Present. APH Publishing. pp. 207–. ISBN 978-81-7648-469-5.
  7. ^ a b c d e Dr. Abdul Ruff Colachal (7 May 2008). "Bangladesh-Malaysia Ties". Asian Tribune. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  8. ^ "Bangladeshi baby-sitter raped a 7 year old girl". Kuala Lumpur Post. 4 September 2012. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  9. ^ "Bangladeshi jailed for raping teen--and wants to wed her". asiaone. 22 May 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  10. ^ "Bangladeshi jailed 13 years, whipping for rape of student". The Borneo Post. 24 July 2012. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  11. ^ Punitha Kumar (24 December 2013). "Bangladeshi restaurant worker gets jail, rotan for rape". New Straits Times. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  12. ^ Maizatul Nazlina (24 December 2013). "Bangladeshi gets 29 years' jail, 16 strokes for raping and robbing clerk". The Star. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  13. ^ "Man slashes would be rapist with machete to protect wife". The Star. 1 February 2014. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  14. ^ Staff Correspondent (25 January 2014). "(Illegal Trip to Malaysia) 57 fortune seekers held in Teknaf". The Daily Star. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
  15. ^ a b "Najib on maiden visit to Bangladesh". The Malay Mail Online. 17 November 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  16. ^ "Malaysia is opening all sectors to Bangladeshi workers". 18 August 2014. Retrieved 21 August 2014.
  17. ^ "Bridge to boost Malaysia-Bangladesh ties: PM". New Straits Times. 10 April 2012. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  18. ^ "Malaysia-Bangladesh FTA to enhance investment relationship further". The Borneo Post. 5 June 2012. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  19. ^ Zakaria Kamarudin (7 March 2013). "Welcoming Remarks By YBhg. Dato' Zakaria Kamarudin, Business Opportunities In Bangladesh (7 March 2013)". Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation. Archived from the original on 26 August 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2014.