19th ANNUAL LEADERS’ CONSULTATION BETWEEN BRUNEI DARUSSALAM AND MALAYSIA BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, BRUNEI DARUSSALAM 11 AUGUST 2015
His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mui’zzaddin Waddaulah, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam and Yang Amat Berhormat Dato Laila Utama Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia, met in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam, on 11 August 2015 for the 19th Annual Leaders’ Consultation between Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia.
2. The Consultation was held in a warm and excellent atmosphere, representing the close and long-standing relations between the Governments and people of Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia. Both Leaders welcomed the continued strengthening of bilateral relations since the 18th Annual Leaders’ Consultation on 3 November 2014, and reaffirmed their commitment to further enhancing cooperation in areas of common interest, for the benefit of both countries.
3. Both Leaders expressed their pleasure at the encouraging developments under the implementation of the Exchange of Letters signed by the Leaders of Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia on 16 March 2009. They highlighted the important role of the Exchange of Letters in strengthening the warm and special relations between both countries and in advancing strategic cooperation.
4. The Leaders expressed satisfaction with the continued progress made by both PetroleumBRUNEI and PETRONAS. This longstanding partnership is manifested through the collaboration in the Commercial Arrangement Areas (CAA), Production Sharing Agreements (PSA), and in other countries such as Canada and Myanmar. Both Leaders also encouraged both PetroleumBRUNEI and PETRONAS to continue working together to find innovative solutions to commercialise recent CAA discoveries at the earliest possible opportunity. Efforts to realise an offshore hub are being coordinated by Brunei Darussalam’s Energy Department, Prime Minister’s Office, (EDPMO).
5. Both Leaders noted the significant progress of the Brunei Darussalam – Malaysia Unitisation Joint Working Group on activities related to the (i) Gumusut/Kakap (GK) and Geronggong/Jagus East Fields (GRG/J) and (ii) Kinabalu West NAG (KN) and Maharajalela North (MLJ) Fields. They looked forward to the conclusion of Definitive Agreements for both areas by the end of the year 2015.
6. The Leaders expressed satisfaction with the progress of the joint technical teams on the joint demarcation and survey of the land boundary between Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia, noting that progress had been made in some of the priority areas. The Leaders urged both sides to undertake joint survey and demarcation activities expeditiously, particularly in areas of significant interest to the people of both countries.
7. The Leaders urged officials of both countries to intensify their discussions with a view to establish a memorandum of understanding or other appropriate framework, to enable the early operationalisation of the provision of the Exchange of Letters relating to maritime access. In this regard, both Leaders urged that efforts be intensified to enable the early conclusion of the discussion.
8. Both Leaders reaffirmed their commitment to maritime cooperation and urged the officials of both countries to continue discussions towards increasing collaboration in this area with a view to having a memorandum of understanding in maritime cooperation.
9. The Leaders recalled the ongoing discussions on matters relating to fisheries cooperation between Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia, including traditional fishing grounds. Both Leaders noted that officials of both sides are currently discussing this matter and encouraged them to conclude the discussion expeditiously with a view to having a memorandum of understanding in fisheries cooperation.
10. The Leaders expressed satisfaction with the progress of discussions on economic cooperation between Brunei Darussalam and the states of Sabah and Sarawak. They welcomed continued engagement on the Keningau Integrated Livestock Centre (KILC) in Sabah, and encouraged both sides to continue exploring other potential areas of economic cooperation.
11. The two Leaders welcomed the progress on telecommunications collaboration between SACOFA, Sarawak, and DST Communications, Brunei Darussalam. In this regard, both Leaders were pleased with the signing of the Bilateral Agreement for Mutual Fibre Optic Exchange and Grant of IRU on 11 August 2015.
12. Both Leaders also noted the establishment of the Brunei – Sarawak Tourism Working Group to cooperate and collaborate in the areas of accessibility and connectivity, marketing and promotion as well as safety and security.
13. The Leaders also looked forward to the bilateral agriculture cooperation between Brunei Darussalam and Sarawak in the areas of rice production, livestock and aquaculture. The two Leaders noted the intention of Brunei Darussalam and Sarawak to enter into an arrangement to cooperate in the field of crude palm oil in the near future.
14. Both Leaders were pleased to note the positive bilateral trade and investment flows between the two countries. Further collaboration between the private sectors of both countries was encouraged by the Leaders to catalyse greater trade and investment cooperation, bilaterally as well as sub- regionally through BIMP–EAGA, towards the realisation of the ASEAN Economic Community.
15. Both Leaders reiterated the importance of continuous cooperation between both countries to facilitate the development of their financial services industries and supervision of cross-border establishments, including further leveraging on both countries’ Islamic finance infrastructure in developing the industry together. The Leaders also encouraged the continuous regular exchanges of information and expertise between Bank Negara Malaysia and Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam taking into account the Memorandum of Understanding signed between both institutions on 3 April 2013.
16. The Leaders noted with satisfaction the excellent progress made in advancing bilateral cooperation in defence, through the regular exchanges of visits, training courses and military exercises between the Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) and the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF), which has contributed towards the fostering of friendship and understanding between both sides.
17. Both Leaders reaffirmed the importance of defence cooperation between the two countries, and commended the RBAF and the MAF personnel presently serving in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) and the International Monitoring Team (IMT) in Mindanao, Philippines, for their unwavering dedication to maintaining peace and stability in the respective regions.
18. His Majesty the Sultan expressed appreciation for Malaysia’s participation in the Brunei International Shooting Skills at Arms meet (BISAM) held on 20 – 31 January 2015 in Bandar Seri Begawan. The Prime Minister of Malaysia also expressed appreciation for Brunei Darussalam’s participation in the 13th Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace (LIMA) on 17 – 21 March 2015 in Langkawi, Malaysia.
19. Both Leaders expressed satisfaction with the ongoing initiatives undertaken to deepen the existing close cooperation in education, including institutions of higher education in areas of research, student and faculty exchanges, seminars, public lectures and in the publication of academic material. In this regard, they welcomed the signing of the MOUs between Brunei Darussalam’s Universiti Islam Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA) and Universiti Islam Malaysia (UIM) on 27 May 2015 and the Joint Conference on “The Sharing of Islamic Knowledge” by UNISSA and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM).
20. Both Leaders noted the progress made during the 7th Bilateral Ministers of Health Meeting between Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia on 1 – 2 December 2014 in Bandar Seri Begawan, and welcomed the establishment of a new area of cooperation focusing on health enforcement, in recognising the importance of an effective and sustainable health regulatory framework for the protection of public health and safety.
21. His Majesty the Sultan also looked forward to Malaysia’s cooperation in placing health matters at the forefront in support of the ASEAN Community vision, particularly during Brunei Darussalam’s hosting of the 13th ASEAN Health Ministers Meeting (AHMM), 7th ASEAN Plus Three Health Ministers Meeting (7th APTHMM), and 6th ASEAN-China Health Ministers Meeting (ACHMM) in 2016.
22. Both Leaders were pleased to note the on-going discussions on the movement of prisoners from areas between Sabah and Sarawak via Brunei Darussalam and of movement of prisoners within Brunei Darussalam via Sarawak. They continued to encourage the relevant agencies to strengthen their cooperation in this area, especially in working towards the finalisation of an agreed standard operating procedure (SOP).
23. The Leaders welcomed the enhancement of cultural ties between both countries over the past year. His Majesty the Sultan took note of Malaysia’s interest to explore cooperation in the fields of family, women and children, and encouraged both sides to look into the possibility of having bilateral placement of officers and staff, as well as exchanges of expertise between the Ministries concerned.
24. The Prime Minister of Malaysia looked forward to the participation of Brunei Darussalam’s athletes at Sukan Malaysia (SUKMA) in Sarawak, Malaysia, in 2016, and expressed hope for the continuous participation of the Brunei Darussalam contingent in the sporting event in the future.
25. His Majesty the Sultan also looked forward to Malaysia’s support and participation in the 7th ASEAN School Games 2015 which will be held on 21 – 29 November 2015 in Bandar Seri Begawan for the first time, aimed at enhancing friendship among students in the region, promoting ASEAN solidarity amongst our youth through school sports as well as providing opportunities for school athletes to interact and engage in cultural exchange within ASEAN.
26. Both Leaders expressed pleasure at the encouraging tourist arrivals between both countries. His Majesty the Sultan was pleased to note that Malaysia was the largest source of tourists for Brunei Darussalam, and expressed satisfaction with the increasing number of visitors from Malaysia. They urged their officials to continue working together to further strengthen tourism cooperation between Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia.
27. His Majesty the Sultan and the Government and people of Brunei Darussalam expressed condolences to the victims and families affected by the earthquake in Ranau, Sabah, on 5 June 2015. His Majesty the Sultan also expressed sympathy on the displacement of people and damages to property affected by the subsequent floods and landslides in Sabah.
28. The Prime Minister of Malaysia expressed appreciation for the contributions made by the Government of His Majesty the Sultan as well as the people of Brunei Darussalam through the ‘Humanitarian Fund for Flood Victims in Malaysia’ towards the flood relief efforts in Malaysia in December 2014. The Prime Minister of Malaysia also expressed appreciation for this financial contribution, and for the assistance rendered by members of Brunei Darussalam’s non-governmental organisations, the National Youth Volunteers (SBK) and Challenge, Adventure, Recreation and Educate (CARE) in January 2015.
29. The Prime Minister of Malaysia expressed his appreciation for Brunei Darussalam’s strong support throughout Malaysia’s Chairmanship of ASEAN. His Majesty the Sultan commended Malaysia’s leadership, in particular, the eight priorities outlined by Malaysia to formally establish the ASEAN Community, including the emphasis in realising a “People-Centred” ASEAN. His Majesty the Sultan looked forward to the next ASEAN Summit to be held in Kuala Lumpur on 20 – 22 November 2015.
30. Both Leaders expressed their satisfaction with the outcome of their meeting and looked forward to the implementation of the decisions reached for a much strengthened bilateral relationship and cooperation between Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia.
31. His Majesty the Sultan also expressed his warm greetings to all Malaysians on the recent Hari Raya Aidil Fitri celebrations, and conveyed also his congratulations to Malaysia on its coming 58th National Day on 31 August 2015. The Prime Minister also expressed his best wishes to all Bruneians on the Hari Raya Aidil Fitri festivities.
32. The Leaders agreed to hold the 20th Annual Leaders’ Consultation in Malaysia in 2016.
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
11 August 2015