Malaysia economy grows by 4.5% despite external challenges, says LGE

KUALA LUMPUR: After Pakatan Harapan(PH) took over the government a year ago, the country has shown an economic growth of 4.5% in the first quarter of 2019.

Finance Minister, Lim Guan Eng said, the 4.5% expansion demonstrates the resilience of Malaysian economy in the face of uncertain external challenges caused by the China-US trade war and this gives the country a good start for the year.

Guan Eng stressed that the first quarter also recorded the highest realised foreign direct investment (FDI) in Malaysian history and a large current account surplus and the largest number of tourists’ arrivals in two years.

“The realised FDI increased by 94.8% to RM21.7 billion in the same quarter from RM11.2 billion a year ago.

“Realised FDI is actual foreign investment made during the period. This indicates the strength of the economy and the rising confidence foreign investors have in Malaysia and its government,” he said in a statement on Saturday.

The RM21.7 billion realised FDI in the first quarter this year is the highest level ever recorded in Malaysian history for one quarter.

The Minister said the majority of the FDI was contributed by RM8.4 billion investments from Japan, RM3.7 billion from Austria and RM2.8 billion from Hong Kong.

“The government hopes the domestic private sector will emulate the same confidence exhibited by foreign investors in Malaysia,” he reiterated.

Meanwhile the current account surplus in the quarter rose to RM16.4 billion or 4.7%of gross national income (GNI) from 3% in the previous period and it will remain in surplus in the foreseeable future.

The first quarter of 2019 also had Malaysia welcoming 6.696 million tourists, the largest since the fourth quarter of 2016.

“This is a 2.7% increase from a year ago when 6.520 million tourists visited Malaysia and a 3.9% increase when compared to 2018 fourth quarter arrivals of 6.446 million tourists,” he said.

Guan Eng also emphasized that the government will pursue inclusive growth in line with the principles of “Shared Prosperity” to ensure prosperity for all as elaborated by the Prime Minister during his speech commemorating the first anniversary of PH administration on May 9, 2019.-Malaysia World News

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