PUTRAJAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysia's foreign policy under the present government is one based on cooperation instead of dispute, Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said on Thursday (Aug 18).
He said if in the past the country had a leader who took a confrontational stance on foreign policy, he chose to be different.
He said he believed that Malaysia's foreign policy should be about building partnerships that benefit the country and people.
"No more insisting on awakening old quarrels or harping on old slights that everyone else had forgotten.
"Instead, I decided that national interest should always come before personal political interest," he said at the opening of the biennial Commonwealth Association of Public Administration and Management (CAPAM) Thursday.
The Prime Minister said the approach have seen benefits, including resolving "legacy issues" with Singapore.
With the Philippines, Malaysia facilitated the negotiations to resolve Asia's longest running insurgency.
Malaysia's relations with her friends across the continents have never been so warm and these relationships have borne tangible results, he added.
"Malaysia and China trade has been growing at over 10 per cent a year. We are also a signatory of the Trans-Pacific Partnership where we joined on our own terms without sacrificing the national interest," he pointed out.
Najib said that while Malaysia would not take on hostile approach, it would not sacrifice self-respect and democratic process to satisfy other countries.