Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA) held a grand Chinese New Year celebration here on Friday, with the attendance of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, former Prime Minister Mahathir Bin Mohamad and President of MCA Liow Tiong Lai.
MCA is one of the three major component parties of the ruling coalition in Malaysia called the Barisan Nasional (BN) in Malay, or National Front in English. Therefore, the activity has a great influence in Malaysia and receives great attention from the Malaysian government.
Around 10 a.m., Najib, Muhyiddin, Mahathir and other Malaysian dignitaries came to the headquarters of MCA to attend the celebration with Liow and other MCA members.
One of the most important parts of the celebration is the ceremony of "Laosheng," by which best wishes were sent to the Chinese community.
In an interview with Xinhua, Liow said the cultural background of Malaysia is quite special. Although there are multi-race, multi- culture and multi-religion in the country, those of Chinese descent here have well observed the Chinese traditions.
"Whenever there is a festival, we will open our doors and celebrate it with all the compatriots," he said, adding that they were very happy to take the festival as an opportunity to promote harmony and solidarity among different ethnics and ensure the development of the nation.
"And I would like to send my best wishes to all the Chinese people!" Liow said.
Najib told Xinhua that this year would be a crucial year for the transformation of the Malaysian economy. He hoped the Year of the Horse could open a new chapter for the economic transformation.
He also said the development of the economy relied on the national unity and stability. He hoped that all the ethnics can continue to unite to work for the country's prosperity.
As 2014 is the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Malaysia, Najib wrote an inscription on a book which was read by Chinese Ambassador to Malaysia Huang Huikang: "May the relations between China and Malaysia grow ever stronger."
Huang told Xinhua that the China-Malaysian relationship was established jointly by Najib's father, Malaysia's second Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak and China's former leadership. As a result, he was reading the book "Tun Abdul Razak."
In the interview with Xinhua, Najib said he would like to express his warmest greetings, a very happy Chinese New Year to all Chinese friends in China. "I believe this year is very auspicious year for China-Malaysia relations, because it marks the 40th anniversary," he said.
Najib also expressed his confidence that the relations between the two countries will get stronger and stronger. "I look forward to working very closely with the new leadership in China, so that we can bring mutual prosperity to both Malaysia and China," he said.