Greater KL gaining prominence as Asia hub, says InvestKL CEO - MIDA | Malaysian Investment Development Authority
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Greater KL gaining prominence as Asia hub, says InvestKL CEO

Greater KL gaining prominence as Asia hub, says InvestKL CEO

22 Jun 2024

Kuala Lumpur’s diverse, multilingual talent pool, robust regulatory frameworks, business-friendly environment, and strong commitment to sustainability are making it increasingly prominent as a highly appealing and accessible hub in Asia, according to InvestKL chief executive officer Datuk Muhammad Azmi Zulkifli.

He said that the city is gaining recognition as a prime location for global service centers that empower multinational corporations (MNCs) to efficiently serve their customers across Asia in areas such as digital innovation and technology.

“We are already witnessing successes in this space. As these MNCs establish their presence in Greater Kuala Lumpur (KL), they bring not only significant investment but also invaluable expertise and cutting-edge technology, catalysing a positive ripple effect across the Malaysian economy,” he said.

Last year alone, InvestKL secured a record-breaking RM8.7 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI), resulting in the creation of 8,329 high-skilled jobs. 

This marks a significant increase from RM2.79 billion in FDI and 2,805 associated jobs created in 2022.

“But far from resting on our laurels, our team is striving to surpass these achievements by strategically targeting MNCs seeking to establish a robust foothold in Asia,” Azmi said.

He added that InvestKL’s efforts to attract leading global companies and foster a collaborative environment have solidified the Greater KL position as a thriving global services hub. 

He said this success translates to far-reaching economic benefits for Malaysia, including direct investment, high-value job creation, and the development of a highly skilled workforce. 

Furthermore, Azmi said the dynamic collaborations forged between foreign and local companies, supported by strong public and private sector partnerships, have created a vibrant ecosystem that benefits all stakeholders. 

He noted that the positive spillover effects from MNCs, such as technology transfer, knowledge sharing, and increased productivity, are key to driving Malaysia’s overall economic growth and development.

“We remain committed to nurturing these collaborative relationships, ensuring Greater KL thrives as a premier destination for global services, and contributing to Malaysia’s economic prosperity,” he said.

Malaysia continues to attract investments from world-renowned companies, drawn by its robust infrastructure, strategic location in Southeast Asia, competitive business environment, and skilled workforce. This is also underpinned by the government’s initiatives and policies aimed at fostering economic growth and innovation.

InvestKL’s success in attracting global giants such as Zimmer Biomet, a world leader in medical technology, and the London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) exemplifies Greater KL’s growing reputation as a world-class business hub.

Azmi noted that LSEG’s flagship office in Greater KL also underscores its confidence in the region’s financial sector and commitment to nurturing local expertise. 

Beyond Zimmer Biomet and LSEG, other prominent MNCs with global service hubs in the Greater KL have actively partnered with local universities to provide hands-on learning opportunities for students. 

“These initiatives, facilitated by the InvestKL Talent Programme (ITP), are not just about aligning local talent with the needs of global companies but also about empowering the next generation of Malaysian professionals with the skills and knowledge to thrive in a globally competitive landscape,” Azmi said.

He said that the ESG & Sustainability ConneXion Centre (ESGS CXC), established by InvestKL in Greater Kuala Lumpur, is making significant strides in promoting sustainable business practices and encouraging the adoption of environment, social, and governance (ESG) principles.

The ESGS CXC serves as a hub for facilitating policy advocacy, capability building, and knowledge sharing among various stakeholders across the business ecosystem.

Azmi highlighted that the Greater KL Live Lab (GKL LL) continues to connect foreign MNCs with local SMEs, educational institutions, and research organisations to drive ESG and sustainability initiatives. 

“We have seen international companies such as DHL using Greater KL as a testbed for maritime deliveries using drones and Japan-based digital healthcare service provider Allm Inc. collaborating with local hospitals to conduct clinical trials. 

“Other companies proudly participating in the Greater KL Live Lab program include Behn Meyer AgriCare, uPledge, Quantum, and Malaysia’s own Carsome, to name a few,” he noted.

Source: NST