Malaysia were one of the four signatories to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will enable the countries to embark on a junior exchange programme to develop badminton.
The other three nations are Indonesia, Thailand and South Korea - all great badminton playing nations that have produced world class players.
The Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) were represented by its secretary Datuk Ng Chin Chai. Wijanarko Adi Mulya Oei, the vice secretary general of PBSI (All Indonesia Badminton Association) signed for his country while Thailand were represented by Air Marshal Associate Professor Nigon Chumnankul who is the Secretary General of the Badminton Association of Thailand (BAT). Korea Badminton Association (KBA) deputy secretary general Han Woo Goo represented his country.
Present at the signing ceremony were BAM acting president Tan Sri Ir. (Dr) Mohamed Al Amin Abdul Majid, BAM deputy president Datuk Sri Mohamad Norza Zakaria and Badminton Asia president Anton Subowo and its Chief Operating Officer Kenny Goh.
Chin Chai said under the MoU all the four partner countries shall host a joint camp once in four years on a rotation basis on mutual agreeable dates.
"Under this exchange programme the partner nations will endeavour to conduct joint training and competitions for a period of seven to 14 days at various levels from the National Under-15, Under-17, Under 19 teams up to the National back-up team.
"The visiting country is allowed to have a maximum of 16 players and four officials for each joint camp." said Chin Chai at the MoU signing ceremony which was held in Kuching during the Celcom Axiata Malaysia Open Superseries in Kuching over the weekend.
"The host country will provide and bear the costs of accommodation, food, internal transport and training facilities for the Joint Camp while the visiting countries shall bear the travel costs to/from the venue fixed by the host country."
Chin Chai further added that whenever any Partner Countries host an international tournament in its country, the other visiting Partner Countries shall send its top players within the level of the tournament to participate in the tournament.
"In return the host country will provide and bear the costs of three hotel rooms to each visiting Partner Countries and further provide additional four complimentary accreditations and reasonable additional practice session at the tournament venue to each visiting Partner Countries," added Chin Chai.
"The partner countries will further collaborate on exchange of technical officials, coaching, training, development and sports science aspect of badminton."
Chin Chai reiterated that the MoU is not only a big boost to the shuttle sport in this region but will benefit the younger players as there are not many junior tournaments compared to the senior tournaments organised every year.
"Joint training camps is much cheaper to develop younger players than sending them to international tournaments," said Chin Chai.