KUALA LUMPUR: The historic opening of the Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) campus in Qatar today can elevate the national higher education onto the global stage, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

He said this is particularly significant as the university began as a Malaysian public educational institution with the national language as its primary medium of instruction.

“As one of the individuals who signed the memorandum urging the establishment of a public university with the national language as the medium of instruction, I am proud to be with the UKM staff on this glorious day,” he said in a Facebook post.

Anwar inaugurated the opening of the campus in Doha, Qatar yesterday.

He also hopes that UKM’s pioneering move will pave the way for other Malaysian public universities to take similar steps.

The Prime Minister also expressed his gratitude at being given the opportunity and space to be with the UKM leadership and staff to witness this unique and historic occasion.

Anwar also congratulated UKM Vice-Chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Ekwan Toriman on the achievement.

The Prime Minister is on a three-day visit to Qatar from Monday at the invitation of the Amir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, with the main event being the Qatar Economic Forum and the opening of the UKM campus.

Meanwhile, in a separate post, the Prime Minister said he also had the opportunity to hold a bilateral meeting with the President of Poland, Andrzej Duda, on the sidelines of the Qatar Economic Forum yesterday.

He said that at the meeting, President Duda expressed his wish to visit Malaysia and invited Anwar to visit Poland, in addition to both leaders concurring on the need to strengthen collaboration in the field of higher education.

“This meeting is very significant as both countries will be taking over the chairmanship of ASEAN and the European Union Council next year and we agreed to strengthen collaboration between the two organisations,” he said.

President Duda also invited him as a guest to attend the Three Seas Summit in Poland next year, which will focus on economic cooperation in the fields of energy, transportation and communication infrastructure.

“We also used this opportunity to exchange views on international issues, including the situations in Ukraine and Palestine,” said Anwar.