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Japan and Malaysia will hold an online business convention for the aviation industry as part of efforts to boost bilateral cooperation in the field, while looking ahead to a post-coronavirus world, it was learned Saturday.

The convention, which will be hosted by the Malaysian side and joined by Japanese parts makers, will be held to confirm cooperation between the two countries.

The two countries hope to provide support for the virus-hit aviation industry.

Officials from Japan’s industry ministry and Malaysia’s international trade and industry ministry will announce on Tuesday that the two sides will foster further cooperation.

Declaring that it will aim to become the biggest aerospace nation in Southeast Asia, Malaysia has been inviting major aviation companies from Europe and the United States.

Japanese aviation industry players have been paying close attention to such moves.

Aircraft parts makers Nidak Seimitsu Inc. and Kyoyu Co., as well as All Nippon Airways Trading Co., a subsidiary of air carrier ANA Holdings Inc., and Asahi Aero Group, are set to take part in the convention.

Japan’s industry ministry expects passenger demand, which saw a sharp decline due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, to recover around 2024. It also predicts that the aircraft parts supply network will spread rapidly throughout Asia.

“We hope to lay the foundation for a future sales increase for Japanese manufacturers,” through cooperation with Malaysia, a senior ministry official said.

The ministry will keep unchanged its long-term goal of increasing the total sales of Japan’s aviation industry to ¥3 trillion in 2030. In 2019, such sales came to some ¥1.86 trillion.

In response to a plunge in demand, U.S. airplane giant Boeing Co. and others have cut back on production. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. has suspended its project to develop the Mitsubishi SpaceJet, Japan’s first domestically developed small passenger jet.

The ministry has been working to maintain the industry base through various measures, such as offering support for the transfer of aircraft parts makers’ employees to companies in other industry sectors.

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