Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad speaks at the 25th International Conference on The Future of Asia in Tokyo, Japan (Photo: AFP/VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – East Asia should consider a common regional trading currency based on gold to promote commerce and free the region from relying on US dollar transactions, Malaysia’s Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said on May 30.

Speaking at the 25th International Conference on The Future of Asia in Tokyo, Japan, Mahathir said that at the moment countries have to depend upon the US dollar which itself is not stable.

He added that the common currency should be based on gold because gold is much more stable.

The Malaysian PM said the proposed currency could be used for regional trade, but would not replace national currencies for use at the domestic level.

He said the exchange rate of the regional currency would relate to the performance of each country and would help harmonise regional trade.

Mahathir served as Malaysia’s PM for 22 years until 2003. He is now serving his second term in office after last year’s election. –VNA