The minister was speaking at a media briefing in Kuala Lumpur yesterday to announce the investment performance in the manufacturing and related services sectors for the first five months of the year.
He said approved manufacturing investments in the first five months of the year amounted to RM41.7 billion, which was 100% more than the same period in 2013, adding that the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) expects to secure some RM10 billion more before year-end.
Malaysia’s investment climate is expected to remain positive despite external economic challenges, he added. Foreign investors continue to view Malaysia as a choice location for investment. For the period January-May, foreign investments accounted for some 60.3% of the total approved investments with Japan as the top source of foreign investments, followed by China, Germany, Singapore and South Africa which together accounted for 84.9% of the total foreign investments, Dato’ Sri Mustapa said.
Domestic investors remain confident of the local economy, with a two-fold increase in approved investments to RM16.5 billion for the first five months of the year.
More than 60 % or RM25.2 billion of the approved investments in 196 projects in the first five months of the year were for new projects, while at the same time existing manufacturers continue to expand and diversify their operations and moving into higher value-added products and activities, he said.
Among the notable projects with investment of over RM1 billion each include those from Petronas and Japan’s Itochu in Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (RAPID) projects in Johor, Alliance Steel in the Malaysia-China Kuantan Industrial Park, Ibiden Electronics in Penang and Sakura Ferroalloys in Sarawak, which will have significant multiplier effects on the national economy.
The bulk of the investments (87.8%) were in the chemical and chemical products, basic metal products, petroleum products (including petrochemicals), electrical and electronics, food manufacturing and transport equipment industries.
In terms of value, Johor registered the highest level of capital investments with RM14.9 billion, followed by Sarawak and Pahang.
The approved manufacturing projects for the first five months of the year are expected to create some 39,600 jobs of which some 85% would be high-skilled jobs.
In terms of investments by state, Johor attracted the highest level of investments of RM14.9 billion due to Petronas’ RAPID project. Sarawak came in second with RM7.8 billion followed by Pahang and Kedah with RM4.3 billion each and Selangor with RM3.7 billion, he said.
Malaysians investors continue to invest overseas particularly in the oil and gas, property and finance as they move to expand their market presence globally, noting the limited domestic market here.
The minister said Malaysians’ investments abroad are encouraged as these investors would also bring revenue back to the country.
Source: MIDA and NST Business Times and Star Biz 19 July 2014