Notwithstanding this, the Malaysian economy remains strong and resilient. A diversified economy and export market, as well as high international reserves, provides greater flexibility for the economy to face an increasingly challenging external environment. Malaysia’s capital market has achieved remarkable growth over the years and is currently among the largest in the region. Not only has the market grown substantially in size, new innovative product have been introduced on an ongoing basis to meet the demands of domestic and foreign investors.
The Malaysian economy continues to record sustained growth. Strong economic fundamentals, as well as increased domestic demand, have resulted in the gross domestic product (GDP) achieving a growth of 7.1% during the first quarter of this year, and 6.3% for the second quarter of 2008. GDP growth for the first half of this year was, therefore, 6.7%. Although the nation will be somewhat affected by global developments, the Government is confident that Malaysia’s economy will continue to remain stable with a GDP growth of 5.7% this year.
To further strengthen the Malaysian capital market and to facilitate domestic intermediaries, such as principal corporate advisors, to expand their international business, the Government proposes that tax exemption be given on fees received by domestic intermediaries, which successfully list foreign companies and foreign investment products in Bursa Malaysia. This measure will also enable domestic investors to acquire shares of foreign companies listed in the local exchange.
To improve the country’s resilience and competitiveness, it is important to instill a culture of excellence and high performance at all levels of the work force, both in the private and public sectors. Towards this end, the implementation of Key Performance Indicators was introduced in the civil service and under the GLC Transformation Programme, with emphasis on performance-based wages at all levels of the workforce.