KUALA LUMPUR, June 21 — Malaysia has recorded a total value of RM83.7 billion in approved investments across various sectors for the period from January to March 2024 (1Q 2024), representing a 13 per cent increase from RM74.1 billion in the same period last year.

Minister of Investment, Trade, and Industry (Miti) Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz said approved investments of almost RM84 billion for 1Q 2024 reflect on how Malaysia has earned investors’ trust.

“Hopefully this momentum (investment) will continue, but there are many issues that may be quite challenging (among them) in terms of geopolitical trade issues that occur between this trade war between China and the US. We have to monitor this closely,” he told reporters after launching the Bursa Malaysia Bhd’s Centralised Sustainability Intelligence (CSI) Solution here today.

Meanwhile, Tengku Zafrul said in a statement that working closely with the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida), Miti has delivered not just the investment numbers, but also the speedy realisation to quickly translate these investments into business opportunities for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and jobs for Malaysians.

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He said the real proof of Malaysia’s competitiveness is in the actual, continuous inflow of investments into key target sectors outlined by the New Industrial Master Plan (NIMP) 2030, including in high-growth industries such as semiconductors, data centres, renewable energy and electric vehicles.

“This is why we will also continue to focus on longer-term industrial reforms and other strategic policy efforts to nurture a conducive investment ecosystem, to drive productivity as well as sustainable, inclusive growth that will pave the way for Malaysia to be one of the top 30 largest economies globally by 2033,” he said.

Mida chief executive officer Sikh Shamsul Ibrahim said the 1Q 2024 investment performance is a testament to Miti and Mida’s tireless dedication to attract investors and nurturing a fertile ground for growth and innovation.

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“We are steadfast in our mission to propel Malaysia to unprecedented economic heights through strategic partnerships with Miti and other key ministries and agencies.

“Our vision is to shape Malaysia into a leader in technological prowess, sustainable practices and a thriving investment landscape,” he said.

With forward-thinking policies and bold initiatives, he said Malaysia stands as a premier destination for both global and local investors, driving prosperity for the rakyat, SMEs and the wider business community.

“This united effort will steer us towards a future of unparalleled growth and innovation,” he added.

According to Mida, the total approved investments for 1Q 2024 comprise 1,257 projects, which are expected to generate 29,027 new job opportunities for Malaysians.

“Foreign investments accounted for 56.2 per cent, or RM47 billion of the total investments, while domestic investments made up the balance of 43.8 per cent, valued at RM36.7 billion.

“Austria topped the list of foreign investors by a very wide margin, with RM30.1 billion (64 per cent) in approved investments, followed by Singapore (RM5.6 billion), the Netherlands (RM3.6 billion), China (RM3.4 billion) and the United States (RM632.8 million),” it said.

In terms of states, Mida said Kedah recorded the highest value of approved investments at RM31.3 billion, followed by Kuala Lumpur (RM21.5 billion), Selangor (RM12.4 billion), Sarawak (RM4.2 billion) and Johor (RM4.1 billion).

“Target sectors stipulated by the National Investment Aspirations (NIA) contributed RM53.7 billion, accounting for 64.1 per cent of the total approved investments across 252 projects, which are expected to create 17,056 new job opportunities.

“The NIA is built on five robust pillars: enhancing economic complexity, creating high-value job opportunities, expanding domestic linkages, developing new and existing clusters, and promoting inclusivity,” it said.

Of the total approved investments, Mida said RM47.5 billion, or 56.8 per cent, fall under the jurisdiction of Miti/Mida, covering 500 projects with 18,517 new job opportunities.

Malaysia’s manufacturing sector experienced significant momentum with approved investments of RM43 billion, registering a remarkable 174.9 per cent increase compared to 1Q 2023, with electrical and electronics (E&E) being the major industry underpinning manufacturing economic growth with approved investments of RM34.3 billion. — Bernama