A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Malaysian government and Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) on March 25, 2021 to transform the IsDB Regional Office in Kuala Lumpur (ROKL) into a Centre of Excellence (CoE).
It will promote cooperation on Islamic finance, halal initiatives and eco-system, science technology and innovation (STI) and reverse linkage and resource mobilisation.
The IsDB was represented by Group President Dr Bandar Hajjar while Minister of Finance Tengku Datuk Zafrul Aziz signed on Malaysia’s behalf.
Dr Hayat Sindi, Senior Advisor to the President on STI and Supervisor, Communities Outreach Division, delivered the welcome remarks for the virtual launching ceremony featuring high-level representatives from Malaysia’s STI and health sectors, and global experts.
Dr Hajjar, who inaugurated the event, said most IsDB member countries continued to face challenges during the Covid-19 pandemic. The IsDB had offered its member countries a US$2.3 billion response package and financing facility called the Strategic Preparedness and response Program (SPRP), based on ‘3 Rs’ – respond, restore and restart.
In this regard, Dr Hayat noted that all relevant actors should work together to fund, design, and deliver solutions, particularly in developing science and technology-based solutions to strengthen IsDB member countries’ health capacity, with a particular focus on combating Covid-19.
Tengku Zafrul in his keynote address said, Malaysia remained committed to working closely with the IsDB in the development of the country’s economy towards achieving inclusive and sustainable development.
“Prior to this, we had focused on four pillars of cooperation, namely Islamic Finance; Halal Industry; Reverse Linkage; and Resource Mobilisation.
“The transformation of the ROKL into a CoE sees the addition of the Science, Technology and Innovation pillar as well as a more comprehensive Halal pillar, which now involves Halal Initiatives and Eco-System.
“This marks a new chapter in our relationship with the IsDB, allowing us to further strengthen our strategic partnership for development.
“It is our mutual vision for the CoE to be a gateway between Malaysia and member countries in exchanging information, particularly in these five identified areas,” he said.
A gateway platform was also launched, bringing together all the stakeholders comprising solution providers, solution seekers, investors and investees as one community, using the power and the benefits of IsDB ENGAGE platform.
The ceremony also witnessed the launch of the e-gateway digital platform bringing together stakeholders comprising solution providers, solution seekers, investors and investees in one community, using the power and the benefits of IsDB ENGAGE platform. — The Health