KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida) is in discussion with four to five multinational companies (MNCs) from South-South countries to invest in local industries like mining, electrical and electronic and crude petroleum in Malaysia.
(South-South countries include Singapore, British Virgin Islands, China, Iran, India, South Africa, Indonesia, Egypt, United Arab Emirates and Cayman Islands.)
Mida deputy director general I Datuk Afifuddin Adbul Kadir said the deals were expected to be concluded by year-end and a press conference would be held when things had been confirmed.
“We do target to bring in more investments from the South-South countries. We have discussions with certain companies in order to encourage them to invest; they are quite big projects,” he told reporters after the opening ceremony of a familiarisation programme for officals of investment promotion agencies of the South-South countries yesterday.
He said getting in new investments like this was very crucial for Mida as other agencies or countries were looking for the same things.
“The cake is getting smaller and we are fighting for it. We have to create packages to attract companies to invest in Malaysia,” he said, adding that MNCs in Malaysia currently were also interested to further expand their operations here.
He said the total direct investment abroad last year amounted to US$8.77bil, of which Malaysian investment in South-South countries amounted to US$8.11bil.
Meanwhile, total foreign direct investments (FDIs) from South-South countries last year was about RM838mil.
Malaysia continues to attract substantial inflows of FDIs into the manufacturing and services sectors.
For the first four months this year, a total of 244 projects involving investments of US$2.21bil was approved. Foreign investment amounted to US$1.17bil or 53.2% of total investment approved, while domestic investments were recorded at US$1.03bil.
During the same period, Malaysian exports to the South-South countries totalled US$24.61mil while imports amounted to US$17.94mil. Major exports in the same period included electronic products and palm oil, while main imports included chemical products and machinery appliances.
Asked on whether the expected double-dip recession in Europe would affect the investment flow into Malaysia, Afifuddin said:“ Not at the moment.”
To mitigate the impact from the crisis, he said Mida had been given a task to further promote domestic direct investment, adding that they had also asked big Malaysian companies like Hong Leong, Lion Group, Berjaya Group or government-linked companies to expand their activities here.
The familiarisation programme, which is now in its 17th year, will give attending countries an opportunity to share Malaysia’s experience in industrial development while promoting foreign and domestic investments.
Highlights include interaction with government officials and members of the private sector on matters related to industrial development and investment promotion, and a visit to some of the manufacturing facilities in Malaysia.