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Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said Malaysia is looking forward to improving bilateral ties with China.

Noting that China has emerged as an important economic powerhouse, he said this influenced the relationship between both countries, especially on the economic front.

"China is different now... when we established relations with China, it was a very poor country, a Third World country, very backward. But now, China has made tremendous progress.

"We find China now the biggest and a valuable trading partner for Malaysia... so our policy is of course to improve the relationship," he told a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today.

Mahathir was asked to describe Malaysia-China relations after 45 years of diplomatic ties.

The prime minister also said his visit to China in April would, among others, focus on the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative.

He also said Malaysia would state its stand on the initiative after the visit.

- Bernama

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