KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 96 per cent of Japanese companies intend to remain in Malaysia, with half of them wanting to expand their business in the country, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Anwar, who is also Finance Minister, said this figure was based on a survey by the Japan External Trade Organisation (Jetro), adding that the rate of expansion was higher than the Asean average and the second highest in the region.
“Malaysia and Japan continue to celebrate strong diplomatic relations now entering their 65th year and Japan is one of Malaysia’s most important and fourth largest trading partner with a trade volume of USD41.21bil (RM181.51bil) in 2022.
“Japan is also listed as one of the main sources of foreign direct investment (FDI) coming into Malaysia in manufacturing projects.
“Last year, a total of 2,746 projects were implemented with a total investment worth USD27.25bil (RM91.14bil) and a total of 336,326 job opportunities were generated while this year, we obtained an investment commitment from Japan amounting to RM23bil,” he said in a Facebook post on Wednesday (July 5) night.
In this regard, Anwar said it was important for Malaysia to continue to ensure a conducive investment environment that will be able to attract more foreign investors to the country, as the continued increase in FDIs is proof of the growing confidence of foreign investors in Malaysia’s economic progress and potential.
The Prime Minister held a meeting with the Japanese Ambassador to Malaysia, Takahashi Katsuhiko along with a delegation from the Japanese Chamber of Trade and Investment (JACTIM) at the Finance Ministry yesterday.
Meanwhile, Anwar said in recent years, FDI inflow continued to increase as the country saw approved investments amounting to RM71.4bil in the first quarter of this year, making it a significant jump of 60 per cent compared to the same period last year.
“Our economic fundamentals continue to be strong, proven by low inflation and an increasingly stable political landscape. Demand for Malaysian products and services is also increasing. The government is also firmly committed to developing new industries such as the digital economy and green technology.
“I am very confident in the performance of future investments in Malaysia, which will certainly continue to be robust. The government will continue to do its best to strengthen the investment climate, and the government is also making it easier to conduct businesses, attract valuable and high-impact investments and create a local workforce that has competitive value,” he said.
He said the effort is in line with the objectives of the upcoming New Investment Policy (NIP) and will be further streamlined in the New Industrial Master Plan (NIMP2030) which will be launched in August. – Bernama