InvestKL Secures Record RM8.7 Billion in FDI for 2023, Close to Tripling High-Skilled Job Creation

InvestKL achieved a groundbreaking milestone by attracting a record-setting RM8.7 billion in foreign direct investments (FDI) in 2023, representing an astounding increase of over 300% from RM2.79 billion in 2022. This surge in investments underscores the solid confidence of foreign investors in Malaysia's economic potential.

Twelve leading global corporations from the Americas, Europe and Asia regions spearheaded the investments. From the Americas, technology and consulting services led the charge, showcasing a strong interest in Malaysia's digital economy. European investments spanned healthcare technologies, financial services and infrastructure, highlighting the region's focus on innovation and sustainable development. Asian contributions were notably varied, with investments in automotive, environmental services, healthcare devices as well as travel and tourism.

The investments generated 8,329 high-skilled jobs, a substantial rise from the 2,805 positions created in 2022. Notably, a significant 81% of these positions were in the digital and technology sectors. This emphasises the increasing importance of tech-driven industries in shaping the economic landscape of Greater KL.

Additionally, life sciences, healthcare and medical tech contributed to 6% of the job creation, with financial services accounting for another 5%. This diversity in job opportunities highlights the dynamic nature of Malaysia’s economy and showcases the array of opportunities available for skilled professionals.

With this, 2023 marked InvestKL’s most outstanding year, culminating in the agency having secured a total of RM29.79 billion in investments since its inception in 2011. To date, 66% of the investments or RM19.74 billion have materialised, leading to the creation of over 27,000 executive jobs. Currently, 74% of these positions are filled, providing Malaysians with an average monthly income exceeding RM14,000.

Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI), YB Senator Tengku Datuk Seri Utama Zafrul Abdul Aziz said, "Malaysia's record-high FDI inflow for 2023 reflects investors’ renewed confidence in Malaysia’s growth prospects, underscored by the Unity Government's strategic policy direction and MITI’s industrial reforms. Our focus on implementation has also seen an average investment project implementation rate of 85% in the last few years, as we continue to facilitate the investors’ journey.

"MITI’s agency, InvestKL, has played a key role in our overall efforts to enhance Malaysia's competitive advantage globally, while also propelling us towards a future powered by technology, sustainable practices, high-quality investments and skilled job opportunities for our citizens."

Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Muhammad Azmi Zulkifli said, “The unprecedented FDI into Greater KL showcases the city’s attractiveness across diverse sectors such as technology, healthcare, finance, and engineering, signifying a major achievement in our efforts to attract high-value activities. The success demonstrates Greater KL’s maturing business ecosystem, capable of securing and supporting substantial, intricate investments.

“The impact is profound, catalysing economic growth, strengthening local ecosystems and creating high-value employment. Our strategy includes leveraging opportunities in neighbouring states to amplify these benefits, contributing to a sustainable and prosperous future for Malaysians.”

2024: Targeting Global Services

The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank forecast a higher Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth for Malaysia in 2024, projecting an increase to 4.3%. As 2024 unfolds, bringing new challenges, businesses in Greater KL are ready to capitalize on the country's strengths to broaden their regional presence. InvestKL maintains its confidence in Greater KL's ongoing enhancement as a strategic global investment hub.

Azmi added, “This confidence is rooted in Malaysia’s investor-friendly policies, diverse and multilingual talent pool, and flourishing ecosystem. As a leading investment promotion agency for Greater KL, InvestKL is committed to spearheading efforts to ensure the nation's capital remains the primary destination for companies looking to expand their presence in Asia.”

In line with the MADANI Economy Framework, the Twelfth Malaysia Plan, and the New Industrial Masterplan 2030, InvestKL’s strategic direction for 2024 places significant emphasis on attracting global services from pivotal sectors such as digital and technology, engineering, health tech, renewable energy, along with human capital development.

Honouring Top Multinational Corporations in Greater KL

Twelve multinational corporations (MNCs) were distinguished with special awards for their exceptional contributions in four distinct categories.

In 2023, Greater KL witnessed technology powerhouse SLB, sports and lifestyle giant Sports Direct and insurance heavyweight FWD, surpassing their investment commitments, setting a benchmark for others.

SLB unveiled its Greater KL Innovation Factory, a cutting-edge innovation centre focused on harnessing artificial intelligence and machine learning to enhance its digital prowess in the oil and gas industry. Sports Direct strategically established its Regional Headquarters in KL, optimising its oversight of Asia-Pacific operations and propelling market expansion. Simultaneously, FWD introduced a regional technology and innovation hub in the city, dedicated to delivering premier technology solutions and stimulating innovation throughout its regional operations.

In the realm of job creation, Accenture, industrial technology leader ABB and food industry titan The Arnott’s Group (TAG), emerged as the top performers, showcasing their roles in fuelling Greater KL’s employment landscape.

Accenture, renowned for its commitment to fostering innovative talent in Malaysia, solidified its status as a preferred employer through comprehensive talent development initiatives supporting its regional operations. Concurrently, ABB has advanced local expertise in robotics and technology through the establishment of Centres of Excellence. In its push for expansion in Greater KL, TAG strategically plans to recruit over 200 professionals for high-value, technology-driven positions, thereby enhancing its capabilities in its Asia Hub.

The ceremony also saw the introduction of two new accolades: the InvestKL Top 3 Advocacy Awards and the InvestKL Top 3 Talents Catalyst Awards.

The former, recognising MNCs for their unwavering support and promotion of InvestKL from 2021 to 2023, was awarded to household name SC Johnson, industrial and medical gas innovator Air Liquide and IT solutions provider Lenovo PCCW Solutions (LPS).

The latter celebrated MNCs' dedication to nurturing talent development, with global professional services company Cognizant, energy and water solutions provider Kamstrup and investment firm SRKay earning distinctions for their outstanding commitment to developing Malaysia’s workforce.

Source: InvestKL

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