Malaysia's relations with China are being examined in Southeast Asia prior to the expected visit of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad to Beijing in April.
This could be a turning point for other deals with Chinese companies and organizations waiting to signal the future of the bilateral relationship.
After all, disused train lines have "more or less violated the trust of Chinese companies in the Southeast Asian countries," said Keith Li, president of China Entrepreneurs Associa in Malaysia.
In fact, "a small number" of projects and developments have been deferred as the Chinese companies involved are waiting, Li told CNBC in Kuala Lumpur last month. He declined to elaborate on the business involved.
Li's association represents the interests of mainland Chinese companies in Malaysia, of which there are an estimated 1,000. Li, who runs a travel agency, said he lives permanently in Malaysia and has been living in this country for over 20 years.
The planned railway project on the peninsula of Malaysia was set in uncertainty after Mahathir's party had surprised the international forecasters with a victory against incumbent Najib Razak in a parliamentary election last May. Mahathir's government then ruled that costly projects approved by the previous government should be canceled or renegotiated, raising concerns among mainland Chinese companies in Malaysia.
There is a lot of concern Foreign direct investment planned by manufacturers in China increased from 3.9 billion Malaysian ringgit ($ 948 million) in 2017 to 19.7 billion ringgit ($ 4.8 billion) in 2018 Increase of more than 400 percent, reported the local media.
In 2018 China In addition to Indonesia, the Netherlands, Japan and the US, Malaysia made one of the largest contributions to the manufacturing sector, the state news agency Bernama reported, citing official figures.