pic by TMR FILE
THE Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) is in talks with multinational firms from nine countries to bring in the operations of 54 projects worth RM21.1 billion into Malaysia beginning the first quarter of 2021 (1Q21).
International Trade and Industry (MITI) Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, in his winding-up session at the Dewan Rakyat yesterday, said the countries include China, the UK, the US, Taiwan, Australia, Japan, Switzerland, German and South Korea.
“MITI, together with the Finance Ministry, will continue to introduce incentives for manufacturing and services companies who are affected by the trade friction between the US and China.
“This proactive measure will cater to existing investors, while attracting new investments into Malaysia.
“MIDA has been in discussion with multinationals to relocate their operations here in Malaysia starting 1Q21,” he said.
Azmin added that the investment agency had identified 97 projects as of September 2020 that could potentially shift and expand its business operations in the country.
Out of the total, 37 projects have been approved involving RM9.2 billion investment from the manufacturing and services sectors of China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, the US, Japan, Korea, Singapore and Switzerland.
Azmin cited an example of Western Digital Sdn Bhd, an American-based hard disk drive manufacturer, which had agreed to further invest RM2.3 billion in upgrading its facilities in Malaysia to increase the output capacity.
With the additional investment, the company has invested a total of RM18 billion into Malaysia, providing 2,000 job opportunities.
In the first nine months of 2020, Malaysia approved investments worth RM109.8 billion for 2,935 projects in the manufacturing and services industries, as well as other main sectors.
Of the total, the foreign direct investment accounts for 38.8% of total investments at RM42.6 billion.
Azmin added that the ministry has approved 312 projects worth RM22.9 billion through the fast-track e-manufacturing licence between July and October 2020 for industries that do not require detailed approval processes.
Meanwhile, he said the government will continue monitoring the economic and policy development in the US following its recent presidency and administration change.
He was responding to a query on revisiting the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement as the economic giant is being administered with a new economic direction and policies.
Azmin added that while the Pakatan Harapan government had agreed to ratify Malaysia’s domestic procedures for the updated Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, the current government believes Malaysia’s participation in free-trade agreements should be based on the principles of national sovereignty, as well as free and open trade.