LONDON: Malaysia wants more British investments in the aerospace industry and financial services sector, says Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
He said Malaysia was a viable location for manufacture of aircraft components, maintenance, repair and overhaul for both regional and global markets.
"Aerospace companies in the United Kingdom should take advantage of Malaysia's International Aerospace Centre established by the government to develop Malaysia into a regional aerospace centre by 2015," he said when addressing 16 British investors here.
Muhyiddin, on a five-day official visit to Britain from Sunday, said the Malaysian Government had announced comprehensive tax incentives that include tax holidays and allowances to further promote aerospace industry growth in Malaysia.
Malaysia was now on a higher plane of industrialisation, focusing on attracting quality and high technology investments, capital intensive, high value-added, knowledge-based and skills-intensive operations, incorporating activities like design and development and research and development programmes, he said.
"Our priority sectors are advanced electronics, information and communications technology, machinery and equipment, biotechnology, medical devices and renewable energy," he said.
Muhyiddin said the government had announced additonal liberalisation measures in the financial services sector which include increasing foreign equity participation in the banking and insurance sectors.
He said Bank Negara Malaysia had also signed a memorandum of understanding with the UK Trade and Investment, a government agency, to promote Islamic Finance and business linkages between the United Kingdom and Malaysian financial institutions.
"With the growing interest in Islamic banking, British banks are invited to collaborate with Malaysian banks in the Islamic financial services areas to enter the financial markets, not only to serve the Asean region but also the Middle East," he said.
The government had also announced deregulation of investment guidelines administered by the Foreign Investment Committee in the areas of acquisition of equity stakes, mergers and takeovers, acquisition of properties and treatment of funds raised by listed companies, he said.
Muhyiddin said the deregulation would strengthen Malaysia's attractiveness as the place to do business and to invest for Malaysians and foreigners alike.
The Deputy Prime Minister said the government was also in consultations with service providers to identify additional services sub-sector for liberalisation.
He said this was achieved in line with Malaysia's commitment to Asean and the World Trade Organisation to enhance Malaysia's stature as a competitive investment environment for the services sector.
Muhyiddin said the government was promoting the setting up of regional establishments. Among them are operational headquarters, international procurement centres and regional distribution centres for which attractive incentives are being offered to investors who set up such operations.
To date, some 2,600 regional establishments have set up operations in Malaysia, of which 53 are from the United Kingdom.
Muhyiddin said Malaysia had also emerged as an important hub for shared services, data centres, back offices and customer service centres.
On medical tourism, he said the government was also promoting healthcare tourism industry by offering incentives to entrepreneurs and investors.
"This include converting the status of foreign patients entering Malaysia for medical treatment on emergency via "Visa On Arrival" to social visit pass," he said.
On pull factors, the Deputy Prime Minister said Malaysia had provided and would continue to provide political and social stability, strong economic fundamentals to ensure the momentum for economic growth and business potentials, strong public sector support and collaborations and business-friendly policies, highly-productive workforce and global trade linkages.
The other factors are availability of a wide range of both fiscal and non- fiscal incentives including pre-packaged customised incentives for projects and activities targeted for development by the government, added Muhyiddin who was former International Trade and Industry Minister. - Bernama