Malaysia’s economy thrives with robust 3.4% growth in Q4 2023

MALAYSIA’s economy is estimated to grow at 3.4% in the fourth quarter of 2023 (Q4 2023), representing a slight uptick from the previous quarter’s growth of 3.3%, according to the statistics department.

Chief statistician Uzir Mahidin said notably, the services sector retained its position as the primary driver of economic performance during this period, with positive growth observed across all other sectors.

For the monthly economic indicators performance, Malaysia’s industrial production index (IPI), which measures the real output in the manufacturing, mining, and electric industries, registered an increase of 0.6% year-on-year (y-o-y) in November 2023.

“The marginal increase was backed by an expansion in the mining sector at 1.9%, and in the electricity sector at 4.2%.

“However, the manufacturing sector experienced a downturn, registering a negative 0.1% after two consecutive months of positive growth,” he said in a statement today in conjunction with the release of the Malaysian Economic Statistics Review.

Uzir noted sales in the manufacturing sector declined by 2.6% y-o-y in November 2023 to RM155 bil, primarily due to a substantial 10.8% drop in the petroleum, chemical, rubber, and plastic products sub-sector, and the electrical and electronics products sub-sector which fell by 5.3%.

The wholesale and retail trade sector grew 6.2% y-o-y to record monthly sales of RM142.6 bil in November 2023 with growth primarily driven by the wholesale trade sub-sector which rose by 6.2%, or RM3.7 bil, to RM63.2 bil.

“This was followed by retail trade and motor vehicles with 4.4% (+RM2.6 bil) and 12.7% (+RM2.0 bil), respectively,” he said.

Meanwhile, the inflation rate remained at 1.5% in December 2023.

On the trade front, Malaysia’s total trade shrank 2.4% from RM237.6 billion in November 2022 to RM231.8 bil.

Exports decreased 5.9% to RM122.1 bil while imports increased 1.7% to RM109.7 bil, an annual increase for the first time since February 2023.

The trade balance remained in surplus at RM12.4 bil, down 43.1% from the previous year.

Total trade amounted to RM225.1 bbilllion in December 2023 with RM118.5 bil in exports and RM106.7 bil in imports. – Jan 31, 2023

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