Dr M: Malaysia an ideal destination for Qatari investors


DOHA • Prime Minister (PM) Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad expressed confidence that Malaysia will be an ideal destination for Qatari investors, especially to access the broader market in the Asean region.

Dr Mahathir, who is on a four-day official visit to Qatar, welcomed more companies from Qatar to explore business opportunities in Malaysia particularly in oil and gas, chemical and chemical products, food processing, halal, hotel and tourism, as well as Islamic banking and finance.

The PM, who arrived in the Qatar capital last night, also believed that there are ample business opportunities that can be explored by Malaysian businesses there.

Currently, he said, Malaysian companies such as Gamuda Bhd, United Engineers Malaysia Bhd, Eversendai Corp Bhd, Holiday Villa Hotels & Resorts and Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd have a large footprint in Qatar.

He noted that Malaysia remains on a steady economic path with a healthy average GDP growth of 4.6% in the first three quarters of 2019.

With its strong economic fundamentals, Malaysia continues to attract foreign direct investments, he added.

Dr Mahathir pointed out that Malaysia strives to strike a balance by not only enhancing the ease of doing business in the country, but also ensuring the nation benefits in the long run.

“By investing in human capital, technology and infrastructure, coupled with pro-business policies, we look to provide the optimal investment landscape to facilitate investors.

“I am optimistic that Qatari investors will find Malaysia an exciting base to expand their overseas operations. As such, this roundtable meeting is the ideal event for us to discuss how businesses from both Qatar and Malaysia can work together for mutually beneficial outcomes,” he said.

The PM said the confidence in Malaysia was attested by a multitude of independent institutes and organisations. Last month, World Bank’s Doing Business Report 2020 ranked Malaysia 12th in its ease of doing business.

“This jump from the 15th position last year showcased Malaysia’s continuous commitment in providing conducive environment to facilitate our investors.

“Malaysia was also ranked the world’s best country to invest in or do business for 2019 by CEOWORLD magazine, while Bloomberg’s 2018 Emerging-Market Scorecard ranked us the most attractive emerging market in Asia,” added Dr Mahathir.

He said the Ministry of International Trade and Industry hosted the second meeting of the Joint Trade Committee between Malaysia and Qatar in Kuala Lumpur last October, and the meeting agreed to strengthen the bilateral trade and investment cooperation of both countries in areas such as banking, finance, transport, energy, tourism, sports and agriculture.