PM Anwar: Depreciating ringgit doesn’t affect investor confidence

PRIME Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has reassured investors that Malaysia’s economic prospects remain robust despite the depreciating value of the ringgit.

Speaking to reporters at a press conference after an event at TRX, Anwar noted that the decline in the ringgit’s value should not be compared to the 1998 Asian Financial Crisis, citing differences in inflation and unemployment levels.

“If (investors) confidence is low because of the ringgit, there wouldn’t be investments like this.”

The Finance Minister also highlighted that the current level of investor confidence in Malaysia remains strong, evident from the significant investments pouring into the country.

He announced that Malaysia recorded a total of RM329.5 bil in approved investments in 2023, marking a 23% increase from the previous year. Foreign investments accounted for 57.2% of the total, signalling substantial international interest in Malaysia’s economic potential.

Anwar underscored the importance of considering Malaysia’s economic situation comprehensively rather than solely focusing on the ringgit’s value.

“(Economic) growth we can sustain as compared to our neighbours so I think look at the comprehensive view and the capacity of the country to grow. What is reassuring to me is the investment figures,” he said.

Moreover, the Tambun MP pointed out the government’s commitment to monitoring the situation closely, particularly regarding the cost of living. He revealed that Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) has been tasked with monitoring the declining ringgit.

“So of course, BNM has been assigned to monitor. As you know, it is the field of competence of BNM but it is affecting all countries.

“But what is important is to focus on what we can do what we should do and we are doing it daily,” he added.

Meanwhile, BNM Governor Datuk Shaik Abdul Rasheed Ghaffour commented on the ringgit’s performance on Tuesday (Feb 20), stating that it does not accurately reflect Malaysia’s positive economic outlook. He attributed the currency’s fluctuations to external factors affecting regional currencies.

As of 12.15pm today, the ringgit was recorded at 4.775 against the US dollar, according to BNM’s website. – Feb 23, 2024


Main photo credit: Business Today

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