KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 – German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier who is on a three-day visit to Malaysia was accorded a state welcoming ceremony at Parliament Square here today.
President Steinmeier and his wife Elke Budenbender were received upon arrival by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah and the Raja Permaisuri Agong Tunku Hajah Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah.
Also present were Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and wife Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail as well as Deputy Prime Ministers Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof.
The welcoming ceremony began with the performance of the national anthems of Germany and Malaysia by the Central Band of the Royal Malay Regiment (RAMD) from Sungai Besi Camp followed by a 21-gun salute.
The German President later inspected a guard-of-honour mounted by four officers and 103 men of various ranks from the First Battalion of RAMD headed by Major Adibadiuezshah Ahmad.
Yesterday, the Foreign Ministry in a statement announced that Steinmeier’s visit would provide the best opportunity for Malaysia and Germany to strengthen ties and cooperation in various fields.
The last state visit involving a German President to Malaysia was 26 years ago, in April 1997.
Germany is Malaysia’s largest trading partner among European Union (EU) countries. In 2022, the value of Malaysia’s trade with Germany amounted to RM59.87 billion, an increase of 10.9 per cent compared to RM53.99 billion (US$13.03 billion) in 2021.