The "International  Relations"  Of The Malay Peninsula  From The Seventh To The Fourteenth Century
By Pamela Sodhy
Published in Akadmika  No.  23, July  1983
As part of the Srivijayan empire  from  the seventh to the fourteenth century, Malaya  experienced much diplomatic contact with other countries,  expecially  China and India.  These  contacts  were  mainly  economic  in nature  because Srivijaya  was a maritime empire based on trade. Political,  military, and religious  factors also influenced Malaya's  diplomatic  relations but  they were  usually subordinate  to the economic  reasons  or  closely  related.  Malaya's  strategic location between India and China enhanced the importance of  trade.  Traders  from  the surrounding region congregated at Malayan ports  which  served  as  thriving  emporia.  Most oftheseports, as  indicated by  written sources and archaelogical finds,  were situated on the East Coast of Malaya.  The importance of  trade  to Malaya war also reflected in matters  of  national  interest  and  in  the domestic  and  external factors  that influenced  Malaya's  international  relations  -  all  these  revolved  around commercial reasons.

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