KUALA LUMPUR — November 13, 2015: Malaysia’s gross domestic product expanded moderately by 4.7 per cent in the third quarter of this year, compared to 4.9 per cent in the second, driven mainly by private sector demand.
The country also saw a moderate pace expansion, with diverging growth momentum across economies.
“The global economy expanded at a moderate pace in the third quarter. In Asia, growth was supported by continued expansion of domestic demand
amid a weak export performance,” Bank Negara Malaysia governor Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz said at a media briefing today.
The Malaysian economy is expected to chart a steady growth path in expanding to the region of 4.5-5.5 per cent this year and 4.0-5.0 per cent
According to Zeti, domestic demand will continue to be the key driver of growth, supported mainly by private sector activities.
In addition, the flexible exchange rate, deep and more mature financial markets and solid financial institutions will support this trend. It ensures
that shocks such as volatile capital flows are well intermediated, thereby minimising spillovers to the real economy.
In Q3, private consumption expanded at a more moderate rate of 4.1 per cent compared with 6.4 per cent in Q2, as households continued to adjust to the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax.
Zeti said private investment grew by 5.5 per cent (2Q: 3.9 per cent) due to capital spending in the manufacturing and services sectors.
Growth in public investment was positive at 1.8 per cent in the third quarter from -8 per cent in the previous quarter due to an improvement
in spending on fixed assets by both the federal government and public enterprises.
Public consumption growth moderated to 3.5 per cent (2Q: 6.8 per cent) following the slower growth in both emoluments and supplies and
services and services expenditure.
On the supply side, all economic sectors continued to expand during the quarter, led by the construction and manufacturing sectors.
The construction sector growth improved due mainly to a faster expansion in the civil engineering and specialised construction activities sub-sectors.
“Similarly, the manufacturing sector registered higher growth, supported in particular by an improvement in the export-oriented industries. The services sector registered lower growth due to a moderation in household spending and
slower capital market activity,” said Zeti.
But the mining and agriculture sectors expanded at a slower pace due to moderation in crude and palm oil production, respectively.
In New York, it is reported that Malaysia’s exports to the United States, riding high on the back of a strong US dollar and depreciated ringgit, surged in the first nine months of the year, according to the office of the Malaysian External Trade Development Corp (Matrade).
Exports jumped 12.9 per cent to RM53.25 billion while imports into Malaysia posted a 2.9 per cent growth to RM40.29 billion. The cumulative two-way trade for the first nine months amounted to RM93.54 billion, an 8.4 per cent rise over the year-earlier period.
Trade commissioner Muhd. Shahrulmiza Zakaria told Bernama that Malaysia’s major export product categories included electronic and electrical
products which, presently, account for 57 per cent of total exports to the US.
Rubber and rubber-based products account for seven per cent while other major exports comprise textile and apparel (3.5 per cent), palm oil (three per cent) and transport equipment (1.6 per cent).