The British Influence

Malaysia enjoys a lot of tourist visits because of its topography giving way to magnificent beach resorts all over the country. Its coastal beauty is among the top and well-loved destinations in the world. It also does not hurt that Malaysia offers some of the best and finest cuisine that marry a lot of international taste in its menu.

British influence over Malaysia

The country has a dominant British background having been exposed to British rule for some time. The British influence started through trade but was believed to have been pushed to put the French power in check especially in the Indian Ocean. They were even reluctant in exerting their influence over Malay at the time coming after problems when they did the same with India.

Protection against Siamese

What got the ball rolling was a point sometime in the 1780s with then Sultan Kedah sought out British help. This was to seek protection from the Siamese soldiers that were rising in power. What is unique about this situation is that the same soldiers were leased to Penang in the northwest by the British East India Company.

It was also at this point where the Straits Settlements were dominantly British-run. This was because British East India Company through Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles founded Singapore in 1819 and not long after acquired Malacca from the Dutch. The trifecta of Penang, Singapore, Malacca proved to be a great trade route for the British.

Keeping trade in check

In 1850, tin-mining was picking up and was expanding into the Malay Peninsula. As a result, it led to Chinese immigrants and Malay rulers to have a rift. This then persisted into territorial disputes which were poised to ruin trade. This was the reason why the British took it upon themselves to play a bigger role through the rulers of Malay.

British advisors

The British influence perpetuated through the “Residents who were acting as British advisors for Malay rulers. This divided the country into two – federated and non-federated. The federated group had more extensive British influence and covered the areas of Negeri Sembilan, Perak, Pahang, and Selangor. British influence was less in non-federated areas that covered the north including Johor.

British rule allowed Malaya to flourish. This was because the country finally had English-medium schools that gave its citizen proper education. On top of this, the country also had the chance to build railway tracks. This only allowed trade especially for rubber, palm oil, and tin to prosper.

Of course, nothing is perfect in this world and because of tax issues as well as dissatisfaction on some advisers, some Malay rulers were confronting the British head on. However, they were unorganized and did not pose a big threat. Under the British rule, everyone also had their own place with the Indians focused on the rubber trade, Chinese with the mines, and the Malays in their villages.

Malaya independence

The Malays saw how patriotic the Japanese were during the second World War. This gave rise to the same sentiment within the country and as English educated citizens understood that there was a way to achieve independence without bloodshed. They were able to achieve this in 1957 and created the  Federation of Malaysia