KUALA LUMPUR, June 11 ― Malaysia’s manufacturing activity is expected to remain supportive as external demand improves, in tandem with the global situation, said Hong Leong Investment Bank Bhd (HLIB) Research.

In a research note today, HLIB research said this is in line with the continued improvement in Malaysia’s manufacturing capacity utilisation rate, which increased to 80.8 per cent in the first quarter (1Q) of 2024 compared with 79.9 per cent in 4Q 2023.

“Following this, we maintain our 2024 gross domestic product forecast to grow at 4.8 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y) (2023: 3.6 per cent y-o-y),” it said.

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HLIB Research said the global manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose to 50.9 in May from 50.3 in April amid a rise in new orders, completion of work backlogs and improved international trade volumes.

Yesterday, the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DoSM) said Malaysia’s Industrial Production Index (IPI) accelerated 6.1 per cent year-on-year in April 2024, underpinned by higher output growth in the manufacturing sector.

Chief statistician Datuk Seri Mohd Uzir Mahidin said the IPI growth accelerated further in April after registering 2.4 per cent in the preceding month, sustaining a positive momentum for four consecutive months.

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The April IPI also marked the highest growth registered since September 2022, bolstered by the expansion across all sectors during the month. ― Bernama