GEORGE TOWN, Nov 19 — Investments in Penang have surpassed the RM10 billion mark as of September this year despite the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent movement control order (MCO) early this year.
Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow, who made the announcement at his office in Komtar today, said the total approved manufacturing investments in Penang for the first nine months of this year was RM10.6 billion.
“In particular, 83 per cent of this amount was contributed by FDI, making Penang the second-highest FDI contributor to Malaysia and representing 22 per cent of the country’s total,” he said.
He said Penang had garnered RM1.5 billion of approved manufacturing investments in the third quarter of this year (July to September).
Of the RM1.5 billion, domestic direct investment (DDI) accounted for RM1.1 billion or 73 per cent of the total manufacturing investments, while the remaining 27 per cent or RM401.9 million came from foreign direct investments (FDI).
Referring to data released by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida), Chow said a total of 47 projects was approved in the third quarter of this year.
“Together with projects approved in the first half of 2020, a total of 9,137 new employment opportunities will be available in the state,” he said.
He said investors travelled to Malaysia, in the third quarter, to meet their consultants and contractors for their approved projects to start work.
“Last week, I met with a team from the United States. They came here, spent two weeks in quarantine, and after that, spent another one to two weeks here to make sure their projects get off the ground with implementation,” he said.
The approved investments were for Penang’s key industries such as machinery and equipment, scientific and measuring equipment, and electronics and electrical industries.
“Penang contributed 60 per cent of Malaysia’s collective investments from these three industries,” he said.
Chow added that Penang is the second-highest FDI contributor in the country at 22 per cent of the country’s total.
He noted that the DDI in Penang also saw an increase of 42 per cent year-on-year and reached RM1.8 billion for the period of January to September with projects from Federal Oats Mills, Iconic Medicare, Straits Orthopaedics and ViTrox Technologies.
He said this is proof of the robust industrial ecosystem in Penang for local players to participate and thrive.
“Penang’s investment performance for 2020, beyond doubt, will not be able to match 2019’s all-time-high of RM16.9 billion but it is still better than 2018’s RM5.8 billion,” he said.
He expressed confidence in the state’s ability to ride out these uncertain times.