KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia highly encourages literary promotion of great works of The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries during its chairmanship of the bloc next year to promote intercultural exchange, said Communications Minister Fahmi Fadzil.

He said ASEAN bibliophiles should work hand in hand to promote intercultural exchange within the region.

‘There are famous Indonesian literature works by Pramoedya Ananta Toer, Hamka, WS Rendra, and also Jose Rizal in the Philippines,’ he told reporters after launching ‘Let’s Read 10 Minutes Programme@BERNAMA’ at Wisma Bernama here today.

Also present were Swedish Ambassador to Malaysia Dr Joachim Bergstrom and The Malaysian National News Agency (BERNAMA) chairman Datuk Seri Wong Chun Wai.

Fahmi said promoting such work will require coordination and collaboration between ministries.

He said Malaysia will also work on data protection and fighting online harm during its chairmanship of ASEAN next year.

‘There is still a lot to do to bring
ASEAN close together, have greater dialogue and more conversations among ASEAN nations.

‘Right now, many of my counterpart in ASEAN express concern about scam in ASEAN, and the social media platform is not doing enough to protect citizens of ASEAN from scams,’ said Fahmi.

Meanwhile, Dr Bergstrom said Sweden will foster dialogue on sustainability, health and human rights with the region during Malaysia chairmanship of ASEAN next year.

‘We (Sweden) will press forward all conversation that we had with Malaysia (at ASEAN level), next year,’ he said.

Bergstrom said Sweden will reach out to libraries and reach new audience to cooperate with in order to raise conversation and converse ideas.

‘Health issues and social issues as well as issues relating to children are good areas to engage and foster dialogue,’ he added.

According to Bergstrom, Malaysia and Sweden enjoy good bilateral relations, and there are currently 100 Swedish companies operating in Malaysia.

He also said green transition, eco-friendliness,
planetary health and combating climate change dominates the agenda for Malaysia-Sweden relations.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency