Malaysia says South Korean and Japanese firms to invest US$3.9b in coming years

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia said on Wednesday (Apr 7) it had secured potential investments from South Korea and Japan amounting to RM16.05 billion (US$3.89 billion) and export purchases of about RM986.2 million to be realised in the coming years.

Malaysia is hoping to attract more foreign investment this year after a major drop in 2020. In a January report, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development said FDI into the country slid 68 per cent last year, the biggest drop in Southeast Asia.

Aside from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, the World Bank has attributed falling FDI in part to longstanding policy and structural issues.

The deals with South Korea and Japan came as Malaysia’s International Trade and Industry Minister Mohamed Azmin Ali wrapped up a week-long trade mission to both countries on Tuesday.

“The mission, also the first for this year, was paramount to the rigorous efforts by the ministry … to bring in foreign direct investments into Malaysia,” the ministry said in a statement.

South Korean firms had committed in the immediate term to invest a total of RM7.3 billion in Malaysia, and to purchase exports of Malaysian goods amounting to RM70 million, the ministry said.

Japanese companies had agreed to invest RM8.75 billion and buy RM916.15 million of Malaysian products.

This includes a RM1 billion investment from Nippon Electric Glass to produce glass fibre for the automotive, construction and energy sector, the ministry added.

The ministry did not give a specific timeframe for the investments to be made.

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