INVE$T | Market Sentiments
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According to Senior Minister and Minister of International Trade and Industry (MITI) Datuk Seri Azmin Ali, an increase in approved foreign direct investment (FDI) in the first half of 2021 (1H’21), which leapt 223.1% year-on-year, signals the confidence of foreign investors in the country’s stable and conducive economic climate and business ecosystem. The positive performance augurs well for Malaysia’s path to a vibrant and sustainable economic recovery. The stellar performance also demonstrates that Malaysia’s strategy of positioning the country as an attractive investment destination of choice and a supply chain hub in ASEAN, particularly for manufacturing operations, is showing positive results. FDI was the main driver of the manufacturing sector during this period with a contribution of RM58.2bil in approved investments while domestic sources of investment came to RM8.7bil. In terms of total approved investment, Malaysia recorded RM107.5bil of FDI and domestic direct investments (DDI) in the manufacturing, services, and primary sectors, representing a jump of 69.8% compared with the same period of last year. The investments involved 2,110 projects and are expected to generate 44,994 jobs in the country. Malaysia continues to attract high-value and high-tech investments, bolstered by its high-skilled talent and adoption of advanced technology for value-added industries.
Meanwhile, in tandem with the National Investment Aspirations (NIA), Malaysia pursues more capital-intensive projects and those that support the development agenda of the nation, consistent with environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals. There is an emphasis on jobs creation with the 367 manufacturing projects worth RM66.9bil approved in the first half of 2021 (1H’21) creating 32,220 job opportunities. The workforce required for the approved investments include 1,367 managerial positions and 4,031 technical professionals such as engineers in the field of E&E, mechanical, chemical, and other disciplines, reflecting the higher value chain transition of the manufacturing sector. In addition, the approved manufacturing projects will also require 4,144 skilled craftsmen. Notable projects approved in 1H’21 include South Korea’s SK Nexilis project for a new copper foil manufacturing plant; Risen Energy’s proposed project to produce bi-facial technology solar products, and OCIM’s proposed investment to expand the capacity of its solar grade polysilicon plant. Going forward, from the strategic vantage point of the NIA, MITI will continue to pursue high quality investments to bring value to the nation and people, not just in preserving jobs but in creating new high value-added employment. The ministry is committed towards positioning Malaysia as the ideal partner for investors in the region, and propelling long term growth for Malaysia through the flow of sustainable quality investments in new and complex growth areas.
Bursa Malaysia to enhance investor relations capabilities of public-listed companies
According to Bursa Malaysia chief executive officer Datuk Muhamad Umar Swift, the bourse has embarked on an investor relations and public relations incentive programme to enhance the visibility and accessibility of its public-listed companies (PLCs) to the investment community through more active investor relations engagements. PLCs participating in this pilot programme will undergo training for one year to enhance their in-house investor relations capabilities for more effective investor relations engagements. The scope of the investor relations and public relations programme includes, among others, assisting PLCs and their senior management with the preparation of corporate presentation slides and factsheets, planning and organising investor briefings with analysts and fund managers, and assisting with public relations engagements such as press releases and media interviews. It is important for PLCs to develop strong relationships with existing and potential shareholders, as well as effectively communicate their equity story and ambitions to all stakeholders. Doing so consistently, will assist investors in making informed investment decisions, which is a key component to companies’ success in the investment market. This programme will not only help PLCs recognise the value of investor relations, but also help to market and promote their attractiveness as a viable investment, potentially elevating their profile, valuations, and liquidity. The programme is the latest of Bursa Malaysia’s strategic focus on ecosystem enhancement, which aims to grow market vibrancy and liquidity while providing a conducive capital raising platform to its existing PLCs. As of September 1, two PLCs namely Ge-Shen Corporation and Excel Force MSC Bhd had conducted their investor relations briefings, which garnered huge interest and participation of over 130 attendees, comprising fund managers, analysts, and institutional investors.
Eye On The Markets
This week, on Friday (17Sep), the Ringgit opened at 4.1765 against the USD from 4.1425 on Monday (13Sept). Meanwhile, the Ringgit was 3.1023 to the Sing Dollar on Friday (17Sep). On Monday (13Sept), the FBM KLCI opened at 1573.78. As at Friday (17Sep) 10:00am, the FBM KLCI is down 24.47 points for the week at 1549.31. Over in US, the overnight Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 63.07 points (-0.18%) to 34,751.32 whilst the NASDAQ added 20.40 points (+0.13%) to 15,181.90.