International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz

Zafrul: Malaysia a destination of choice

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia remains a top investment destination among global investors and a hotspot for business expansion, according to the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida).

The country attracted almost RM194bil of approved investments in the first nine months of 2022 (9M22), with a quarter of the investments coming from China.

On a year-on-year (y-o-y) basis, the total approved investments rose by 2.5% from RM188.9bil in 9M21.

Johor bagged one-third of the approved investments in 9M22, leaving other states behind.

“The strong approved investment figures proves that the country’s established standing as a gateway to Asean and an investment destination of choice in Asia,” said International Trade and Industry Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz.

Between January and September, the country has attracted a total of RM193.7bil (US$41.7bil) worth of approved investments in the services, manufacturing and primary sectors.

This involved 2,786 projects and is expected to create 98,414 job opportunities in Malaysia.

“Our robust supply chain network, competitive cost structure, simplified business processes, cutting-edge innovation and technology capabilities, and good talent base are key ingredients in attracting investments and driving sustainable growth in this country.

“Moving forward, the International Trade and Industry Ministry and its agencies will ensure that new investment opportunities will also build the appropriate capacity and talent base in targeted industries to develop the nation’s economy in a sustainable manner,” Tengku Zafrul said in a statement.

Of the RM193.7bil approved investments, foreign direct investments (FDIs) remained the major contributor at 67.5% or RM130.7bil (US$28.1bil).

Meanwhile, domestic direct investments contributed 32.5% or RM63bil.

It is noteworthy that this represents a 15% increase as compared to the FDIs approved in the same period in 2021.

In 9M22, China dominated foreign investments totalling RM49.2bil (US$10.6bil).

This is followed by the United States (RM16.9bil), the Netherlands (RM16.5bil), Germany (RM9.2bil) and Singapore (RM8.7bil.

Five states that have recorded significant approved investments include Johor (RM63.9bil), Kuala Lumpur (RM26.1bil), Selangor (RM25.7bil), Sarawak (RM17.6bil) and Kedah (RM12.1bil).

Mida said the stellar service sector performance exceeded expectations for the 9M22 period, marking an increase of 60.9% y-o-y.

The manufacturing sector recorded approved investments of RM64.9bil and the primary sector achieved RM15.5bil in approved investments.

Mida chief executive officer Datuk Arham Abdul Rahman said the government is working aggressively to attract more high-quality, high-impact, capital-intensive projects in the manufacturing and services sectors.

“The government focuses on the digital economy, energy and high value manufacturing activities such as transport technology which include electric vehicles and its ecosystem that will have a significant economic potential and sustainable long-term growth,” he added.