Malaysia’s economy grows 6.2% in first quarter

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Malaysia’s economy grew by a surprising 6.2 per cent in the first quarter of the year, the central bank announced Wednesday, but economists warned that its surging exports could be hit by a slowdown in China.

Southeast Asia’s third largest economy saw positive growth in the quarter in all its major economic sectors except for mining, and strong expansion in domestic demand for foreign goods, Bank Negara said.

Inflation rose to 3.4 per cent in the first quarter against 3.0 per cent in the same period last year, Bank Negara said, after cuts in fuel, sugar and other subsidies.

Trade grew healthily between January and March, with strong exports pushing the trade surplus up by 14.9 per cent and domestic demand rising 7.4 per cent year-on-year.

“Exports will continue to benefit from the recovery in the advanced economies while private domestic demand is expected to remain the key driver of the overall growth,” the bank said.

But economists warned that a continuing global recovery hung in the balance as China’s growth continues to cool.

“Going forward, despite continued improvement in the US and Europe, we are still reliant on the performance of China and looking at reforms in Japan,” said Kenanga Investment’s Wan Suhaimie Wan Mohd Saidie.

China has become Malaysia’s top export market in recent years, particularly for palm oil, transport equipment and electronics components.

Exports to China were worth 97 billion ringgit ($30 billion) in 2013, although outgoing trade to the Asian giant slid in March for the first time since June 2013.

The government has forecast economic growth of between 5 and 5.5 per cent this year, while the central bank has a wider range of 4.5 to 5.5 per cent.

The government is also planning to introduce a goods and services tax next year as it seeks to tackle its budget deficit.

A May 1 rally saw thousands of Malaysians take to the streets to protest against the new tax, saying the cost of living is already too high.

Malaysia has one of Asia’s highest debt-to-GDP ratios. Critics say the government is mismanaging the economy and has failed in its pledge to fight endemic corruption.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source : Channel News Asia | May 16, 2014

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About thomasdinnocenzi

Thomas D'Innocenzi is a highly accomplished, results-focused senior international executive with extensive experience in global sourcing and market development worldwide to meet evolving business needs. Tom has proven ability in implementing and managing profitable global sourcing operations worldwide. Extensive experience in international market development operations to accommodate rapid growth. Skilled in building top-performing teams, benchmarking performance, and restricting organizations to improve efficiency, productivity, and profitability. Experienced transition leader and change agent. As principal of Nova Advisors, LLC I’ve assembled an exemplary team that brings with them the knowledge and experience gained from starting up a Global Sourcing program with multiple Fortune 500 companies as well as the largest supplier network throughout the Asia-Pacific region. We have experience and expertise in more than a thousand medical and pharmaceutical products in manufacturing and sourcing at the best value. The right product, the right price point and the right branding fueled these successes that resulted in double-digit growth for top line sales and bottom line net margins for our customers. What sets us apart: • Our reach includes a large network of suppliers & manufacturers spanning 13 countries in Asia-Pacific region • We understand the manufacturing process and the business of the supplier and the buyer • Our company culture is based on quality assurance and our process is based on local quality control Our commitment is to be your partner offering the best products and services at the lowest cost. Contact me to discuss how we can make the global marketplace work for you. thomas@novaadvisors.com In addition, I am open to discussing opportunities in global sourcing, international marketing & sales, logistics and medical/pharma in Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines & Japan. Aside from my work I enjoy piano, astronomy, physics, and assisting my daughters with their studies. SPECIALTIES: Global Sourcing, Supply Chain Management, Business Development, Marketing, Logistics, Global Networking, Market Development, Healthcare Solutions, Pharmaceuticals, Medical Devices, Technology, Asia, Southeast Asia, US and Canada
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