When Europe first started discovering and exploring new lands
When Europe first started discovering and exploring new lands, the Malay Peninsula also found itself in these Western powers’ sights. The Malay Peninsula was first occupied by foreign powers when the Portuguese defeated the Melaka kingdom in 1511. Malaysia was once a colonized land and known as Malaya back then. Malaysia is one of the Commonwealth countries, which means Malaysia was one of the British colonies. The British was another Western power eyeing the riches of the Malay Peninsula. Malaya was occupied by the British in 1824-1957. As did other foreign powers, the British wanted to control the economic riches of the land. Therefore, in the early stages of their entry to the Malay Peninsula, the British were driven by desire for natural resources and economic factors. However, that desire to maintain economic control led to political interference in the Malay Peninsula. History, the British became active in the area in the 18th century, partly because they sought trade, but also to check French power in the Indian Ocean. The sultan of Kedah, looking for help against the Siamese, leased the island of Pinang to the English East India Company in 1786, and Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, a company administrator, founded Singapore in 1819. Under the Anglo-Dutch Treaty of 1824, Britain secured Malacca from the Dutch and in return relinquished its claims to Sumatra and nearby smaller islands. Singapore, Pinang, and Malacca (which collectively became the Straits Settlements in 1826) were then administered by Britain.