Speaking at a forum on investment opportunities in Malaysia, in Madrid yesterday, the minister said “The flow of investments from Spain marks a diversification in the volume of quality investments that Malaysia is targeting for in Europe.” Malaysia, which has attracted the bulk of European investments from Germany, Britain and France, is expanding its focus to draw more investments from Spain.
The forum was attended by Spain’s top corporate leaders including in the automotive, renewable energy, steel and biotechnology sectors.
Dato’ Sri Mustapa said even though the total investment from Spain is small, amounting to US$2.5 billion (RM8.2 billion), it is nevertheless significant.
The Spanish investments are mainly from Acerinox’s US$852 million stainless steel project in Johor and Tecnicas Reunidas, which has been awarded a US$1.5 billion contract from Petronas for the Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development project in Pengerang, Johor.
Spanish companies have also made inroads into Malaysia and the region via the setting up of regional operations in the country. Currently, there are 18 Spanish regional establishments in Malaysia including Scytl and Elevadores Goian.
Spanish companies have also shown keen interest to participate in the US$14 billion 350km high-speed rail project linking Singapore to Kuala Lumpur.
Spain’s Secretary of State for Trade, Jaime Garcia-Legaz, highlighted the success of a Spanish consortium in undertaking a high-speed rail project linking Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia.
Meanwhile, Garcia-Legaz, in his bilateral meeting with Dato’ Sri Mustapa, described the current US$1.05 billion trade volume between Spain and Malaysia as low, calling for a removal of trade barriers via the Malaysia-European Union Free Trade Agreement, which is currently being negotiated.
Source: NST Business Times 21 Oct 2014