Strong, productive workforce key to Malaysia’s economic resilience
24 Apr 2020
The Malaysian economy has the resiliency to bounce back from the current situation due to its strong and productive labour force, an economist said.
Juwai IQI chief economist Shan Saeed said the government was focusing on sectors that could kick-start the economy in a short time while also maintaining macro-economic activity that would bolster economic outlook.
“While the Movement Control Order (MCO) is being extended until May 12, the government is fully gearing up to bring investors’ confidence back to the country while maintaining growth and economic momentum, which is vital for the long-term outlook,” he told Bernama.
Meanwhile, Shan said the economic recovery plan announced by the government yesterday would increase the confidence of local and foreign investors to resume investing in Malaysia.
“The good part is, once the Malaysian economy opens up and sectors start operating, we will see foreign direct investment coming back into the economy,” he said.
Shan pointed out that people still needed to shop for groceries, get a haircut and buy cars, houses and other basic items; hence demand would continue to be strong.
“Looking ahead, we maintain our 2020 gross domestic product growth forecast of between one and two per cent despite economic uncertainties,” he said, adding that the ringgit would continue to maintain structural stability at between 3.97 and 4.30 to the US dollar.
Yesterday, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced that the Ministry of Finance and the Economic Planning Unit (EPU) of the Prime Minister’s Department would be formulating a comprehensive economic recovery plan for the short, medium and long term.
This is aimed at ensuring that economic activities could be revived quickly after the MCO period ends. Among the initiatives to be formulated are building the capabilities and skills of the people, encouraging domestic spending, boosting industry resilience including that of the small and medium enterprises, as well as cultivating a more positive investment environment for the future.
Muhyiddin said the government would also consider reopening more sectors and sub-sectors subject to strict conditions to ensure companies continued to be competitive while workers’ safety continued to be protected.