Published: Wednesday May 16, 2012 MYT 10:57:00 AM
Updated: Wednesday May 16, 2012 MYT 10:59:57 AM
Najib leaves for New York
LONDON: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak has departed for New York from the Farnborogh Airport here for a four-day working visit.
During his two-day stay here, Najib and his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor attended a reception hosted by Prince Charles in conjunction with the granting of the Royal Charter Award to the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies (OCIS).
Among other guests from Malaysia were the Raja Muda of Perak Raja Dr Nazrin Shah, who is a trustee of OCIS, Tun Ahmad Sarji Abdul Hamid also as trustee, Datuk Dr Afifi Alkiti who is a fellow at the centre and Tuanku Raja Zarith Sofiah Al-Marhum Sultan Idris Shah.
The prime minister is a member of the high council while Prince Charles is the patron.
The conferment of the Royal Charter to the OCIS is significant as it marks the first time an Islamic institution in the United Kingdom is conferred with such a prestigious status since such Charters were granted by successive Sovereigns from 1231.
According to Najib, Malaysia had made significant financial and material contributions to the centre.
"We believe we need to project the real image of Islam and Malaysia's success as a progressive and modern Muslim country as well as looking after the rights of the non-Muslims is a very good model for us to demonstrate. The Oxford Centre allows us to do so," he said.
In New York, Ambassador to the United States Datuk Othman Hashim said Malaysia seeks to promote more cooperation with American companies.
As part of the effort, he said, Najib will attend a business roundtable with the business community here and meet chief executive officers of top US companies and captains of industries.
Among the companies are Eastman Chemical, Global Consumer Insurance, Guardian Pharmacy, ConocoPhilips, Boeing and Citigroup.
"The United States is one of the top foreign investors in Malaysia, so we want to increase the figures. We know there are a lot of opportunities for Malaysia and the United States to work together in this field," he said.
Othman said Malaysia was also pushing for an increase in trade with the United States eventhough trade between the two countries was now "very huge". - Bernama