Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Muhyiddin: Foreign investment reaches record level

Foreign investments in the manufacturing sector for the first eight months of this year rose to RM36.8bil, exceeding the record for the whole of 2007, which amounted to RM33.4bil.

International Trade and Industry Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the total amount of investments approved during this period stood at RM49.8bil, of which RM13bil was from domestic investors.

“Such sustained inflows are indeed attestation to Malaysia’s continued competitiveness, especially now, in the wake of intense competition from both the developing and developed economies, regional and globally,” he said when closing the Sabah Interna­tional Expo (SIE) 2008 here.

According to Muhyiddin, it was imperative that the government continued to promote foreign investments into the country as Malaysia derived tangible and intangible benefits from the inflows of foreign direct investments (FDIs), while at the same time providing impetus for the development of Malaysian small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

“While promoting foreign investments, we must equally emphasize on the need for domestic investors to participate in the country’s industrial development,” he added.

He said the government was also promoting cross-border investment where Malaysian companies were urged to venture abroad to expand their markets, tap new investment opportunities, acquire new technology and gain access to raw materials.

On another note, he said Malaysia’s total trade for the period of January to August 2008 grew by 12.7 per cent to RM805.2bil, compared with RM714.5bil in the corresponding period in 2007.

“Exports expanded by 16.1% to RM449.9bil while imports increased by 8.7% to RM355.3bil,” said Muhyiddin.

On Sabah’s development, he said that between January and August this year, a total of 27 projects was approved by his Ministry in the state for those with manufacturing licences under the Industrial Coordination Act, with investments amounting to RM825.6mil. - Bernama.