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Sudanese Community Celebrates Independence Anniversary
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Jan 28, 2009 - 7:28:31 AM

Sudanese Community Celebrates Independence Anniversary


KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 28 (Bernama) -- The Sudanese community here along with their Malaysian friends will celebrate Sudan's 53rd independence anniversary celebrations here tomorrow, an event the African country sees as a platform to further cement people-to-people ties between the two Islamic countries.

Sudan's ambassador to Malaysia Nadir Yousif El-Tayeb said some 450 guests, including representatives from 70 Malaysian companies, diplomats, government officials, businessmen, academician and students were expected to attend the ceremony at a hotel here.

Nadir said the event would also provide an opportunity for Sudanese and Malaysians from various fields here to get to know and understand each other better because lack of information about Sudan and Africa in general posed an obstacle in creating closer ties.

"Malaysia and Malaysians are highly respected in Sudan...I believe people-to -people relations and good understanding are vital in our bilateral ties," he told Bernama in an interview here.

Khartoum and Kuala Lumpur established resident diplomatic representation in 1991 and the past ten years saw rapid progress in the bilateral ties between Sudan and Malaysia encompassing areas of trade, investment, education and politics.

Malaysia is Sudan's second important economic partner after China, and also one of its major investors.

Nadir said there are more than 50 Malaysian companies, either investing, implementing projects or doing trade with Sudan, which is Africa's largest country.

National oil company Petronas is the largest Malaysian company and a key player in Sudan's oil and gas industry.

In this context, Nadir said, Sudan saw Malaysia as an important strategic partner in the country's development and hoped to learn Malaysia's experiences in the areas of administration and developmental and economic policies.

Some 4,000 Sudanese have been trained in various fields by Malaysia since the 1980s.

Nadir also noted that the education field was an area increasingly gaining significance in the bilateral ties as there are more than 2,000 Sudanese students currently pursuing their studies here.

With a 40 million population now, Sudan, a republic in northeastern Africa, achieved independence on Jan 1, 1956 from Britain

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