From The Desk of The Executive Director

June was a busy month for the Chamber as we all sought to understand the composition and policy direction of the new government. AMCHAM was able to secure substantive and early engagements with senior leadership and we look forward to working closely to ensure Malaysia remains a strong commercial partner for U.S businesses which in turn translates to a meaningful impact on Malaysia’s socio-economic landscape. Please watch for the MY AMCHAM CARES 2018.  

Without doubt, the highlight of the month was the presence of Y.A.B. Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Prime Minister of Malaysia at AMCHAM’s Annual General Meeting Luncheon on 28 June.  We were all deeply honored that he accepted our invitation to address the U.S. business community and share his thoughts about the role of U.S. business in the new government’s vision for the country. His messages could not have been more timely with many member companies’ HQs asking critical questions about the future business environment.   

With a some substantial last-minute adjustments, including a change of venue to cope with the surge in demand for this event, we were delighted to welcome 250 members and guests including senior officials from the Ministry of International Trade & Industry, Ministry of Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism, Ministry of Health, Royal Malaysian Customs Department and MIDA. Representatives from other international Chambers were also invited and approximately 20 media outlets were represented.

Amidst all the excitement over Tun’s appearance, we did conduct our Annual General Meeting in accordance with AMCHAM’s Constitution. The 13 Board of Governors remains largely the same, except that we say thank you and farewell to one of our two Vice-Presidents Mr. Tony Del Rosario (Coca-Cola). Tony served the Chamber with great commitment, regularly traveling from his base in Singapore in order to join our Board meetings. Tony is being replaced by Mr. Ahmed Yehia, also of Coca-Cola, who serves as Country Manager for Malaysia, Singapore, and Brunei.

Noting the Prime Minister’s interest in Coca-Cola memorabilia, Ahmed Yahia was able to add to The Prime Minister’s collection by presenting Tun Dr. Mahathir with one of Coca-Cola’s limited-edition ‘peace’ cans, launched specifically to commemorate the historic summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore. The design not only featured a ‘handshake’ using its signature “swirl,” but also featured a special Coca-Cola logo—half in English, half in Korean that reads “Here’s to peace, hope and understanding”.

With Hari Raya celebrations almost over, the next few months will focus on getting to know our new Ministers and learning about their priorities. We expect meetings to vary in size but we hope that we can include some of our members.  

We are working hard to meet with some of the newly-appointed Ministers and their deputies; we will be emailing many of you looking for ideas and inputs in advance of these meetings so that we can go into them with a strong understanding of your priorities and any outstanding issues!

The rest of the AMCHAM year is looking busy!  Please do mark your calendars and consider some much needed support of these two larger events amongst others that will be posted to the website when ready.

  1. 4 September 2018 Annual Penang Dialogue 2018 with Chow Kon Yeow, new Chief Minister of Penang and H.E. Kamala Shirin, U.S. Ambassador to Malaysia  
  2. 24 November 2018 Thanksgiving Gala Dinner and MY AMCHAM Cares Recognition Ceremony

Look forward to your support and participation.