Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is flanked by the Lord Mayor of the City of London, Jeffrey Richard de Corban Evans (seated, second from left), and British High Commissioner to Malaysia Victoria Treadell at Mansion House in London yesterday. With them are Malaysian and British officials. Bernama pic

LONDON: Khazanah will set up an endowment of £5 million (RM29 million) over five years to sponsor up to three Malaysian scholars at any one time in perpetuity to pursue postgraduate studies at the prestigious University of Oxford.

Datuk Seri Najib Razak, in a speech text prepared for delivery at the launch of Khazanah Nasional Bhd’s regional office here late on Tuesday (Wednesday Malaysia time), said it would under the Rhodes Scholarship for Malaysia, in partnership with the Khazanah foundation programme.

The prime minister also announced that Khazanah would set up the Khazanah Residency Programme, focused on five areas, namely: Arts, Culture & Society; Design; Public Service; Journalism; and Science and Technology.

“Under this programme, Khazanah will sponsor up to 10 qualified Malaysians every year for short-term residencies and fellowships in locations around the world,” he said in the speech text.

“I am delighted that Khazanah is showing this leadership in sending talented Malaysians abroad to broaden and enrich their knowledge and experience — from which all Malaysians will benefit,” he said.

Najib, wrapping up his five-day working visit to drum up investments from UK firms, was slated to officiate the opening of Khazanah Europe Investment Ltd (KIEL) office at London’s iconic The Shard tower.

Khazanah already has regional bases in Istanbul, Beijing, Mumbai and San Francisco.

“Despite the uncertain global conditions, we couldn’t be without an office to tap into regional growth opportunities and help strengthen Malaysia’s long-term competitiveness on the (European) continent,” he said.

“Europe offers attractive and resilient valuations of its companies. As of 2015, 17 per cent of the world’s billion dollar tech firms were founded here, on this continent,” he said.

“Europe dominates the Top Ten list by key innovation indicators, and in 2015, it contained more than 40 tech start-ups with a collective value of more than US$120 billion. Of that, companies with a combined value of US$40.4 billion, or 34 per cent, call the United Kingdom home.”

Najib said Khazanah chose to locate its new office at The Shard for two reasons.

He said the 95-storey glass and steel tower represents “a striking and internationally-known example of innovative architecture, a new defining feature for London in the 21st century”.

“It is also an emblem of the creativity and dynamism that are at the heart of Khazanah and are a key part of our vision for Malaysia,” he added.

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