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Malaysia Economy Profile 2014

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Economy - overviewMalaysia, a middle-income country, has transformed itself since the 1970s from a producer of raw materials into an emerging multi-sector economy. Under current Prime Minister NAJIB, Malaysia is attempting to achieve high-income status by 2020 and to move farther up the value-added production chain by attracting investments in Islamic finance, high technology industries, biotechnology, and services. NAJIB's Economic Transformation Program (ETP) is a series of projects and policy measures intended to accelerate the country's economic growth. The government has also taken steps to liberalize some services sub-sectors. The NAJIB administration also is continuing efforts to boost domestic demand and reduce the economy's dependence on exports. Nevertheless, exports - particularly of electronics, oil and gas, palm oil and rubber - remain a significant driver of the economy. As an oil and gas exporter, Malaysia has profited from higher world energy prices, although the rising cost of domestic gasoline and diesel fuel, combined with sustained budget deficits, has forced Kuala Lumpur to begin to address fiscal shortfalls, through initial reductions in energy and sugar subsidies and the announcement of the 2015 implementation of a 6% goods and services tax. The government is also trying to lessen its dependence on state oil producer Petronas. The oil and gas sector supplies about 32% of government revenue in 2013. Bank Negara Malaysia (central bank) maintains healthy foreign exchange reserves, and a well-developed regulatory regime has limited Malaysia's exposure to riskier financial instruments and the global financial crisis. Nevertheless, Malaysia could be vulnerable to a fall in commodity prices or a general slowdown in global economic activity because exports are a major component of GDP. In order to attract increased investment, NAJIB earlier raised possible revisions to the special economic and social preferences accorded to ethnic Malays under the New Economic Policy of 1970, but retreated in 2013 after he encountered significant opposition from Malay nationalists and other vested interests. In September 2013 NAJIB launched the new Bumiputra Economic Empowerment Program (BEEP), policies that favor and advance the economic condition of ethnic Malays.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$525 billion (2013 est.)
$501.5 billion (2012 est.)
$474.7 billion (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$312.4 billion (2013 est.)
GDP - real growth rate4.7% (2013 est.)
5.6% (2012 est.)
5.1% (2011 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$17,500 (2013 est.)
$17,000 (2012 est.)
$16,400 (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
Gross national saving32.3% of GDP (2013 est.)
31.9% of GDP (2012 est.)
34.9% of GDP (2011 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 50.1%
government consumption: 13.9%
investment in fixed capital: 26.2%
investment in inventories: 0.8%
exports of goods and services: 84.1%
imports of goods and services: -75.2%
(2013 est.)
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 11.2%
industry: 40.6%
services: 48.1% (2013 est.)
Population below poverty line3.8% (2009 est.)
Labor force13.19 million (2013 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 11.1%
industry: 36%
services: 53.5% (2012 est.)
Unemployment rate3.1% (2013 est.)
3% (2012 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 10.3%
male: 9.8%
female: 11% (2012)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 1.8%
highest 10%: 34.7% (2009 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index46.2 (2009)
49.2 (1997)
Budgetrevenues: $65.72 billion
expenditures: $79.4 billion (2013 est.)
Taxes and other revenues21% of GDP (2013 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-4.4% of GDP (2013 est.)
Public debt54.6% of GDP (2013 est.)
53.3% of GDP (2012 est.)
note: this figure is based on the amount of federal government debt, RM501.6 billion ($167.2 billion) in 2012; this includes Malaysian Treasury bills and other government securities, as well as loans raised externally and bonds and notes issued overseas; this figure excludes debt issued by non-financial public enterprises and guaranteed by the federal government, which was an additional $47.7 billion in 2012
Inflation rate (consumer prices)2.2% (2013 est.)
1.7% (2012 est.)
note: approximately 30% of goods are price-controlled
Central bank discount rate3% (31 December 2011)
2.83% (31 December 2010)
Commercial bank prime lending rate4.5% (31 December 2013 est.)
4.7% (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of narrow money$97.03 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$93.89 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of broad money$439.7 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$435.2 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$421 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$412.4 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$476.3 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
$395.1 billion (31 December 2011)
$NA (31 December 2010 est.)
Agriculture - productsPeninsular Malaysia - palm oil, rubber, cocoa, rice; Sabah - palm oil, subsistence crops; rubber, timber; Sarawak - palm oil, rubber, timber; pepper
IndustriesPeninsular Malaysia - rubber and oil palm processing and manufacturing, petroleum and natural gas, light manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, medical technology, electronics and semi-conductors, timber processing; Sabah - logging, petroleum and natural gas production; Sarawak - agriculture processing, petroleum and natural gas production, logging
Industrial production growth rate5% (2013 est.)
Current Account Balance$16.67 billion (2013 est.)
$18.64 billion (2012 est.)
Exports$230.7 billion (2013 est.)
$227.7 billion (2012 est.)
Exports - commoditiessemiconductors and electronic equipment, palm oil, petroleum and liquefied natural gas, wood and wood products, palm oil, rubber, textiles, chemicals, solar panels
Exports - partnersSingapore 13.6%, China 12.6%, Japan 11.8%, US 8.7%, Thailand 5.4%, Hong Kong 4.3%, India 4.2%, Australia 4.1% (2012)
Imports$192.9 billion (2013 est.)
$186.9 billion (2012 est.)
Imports - commoditieselectronics, machinery, petroleum products, plastics, vehicles, iron and steel products, chemicals
Imports - partnersChina 15.1%, Singapore 13.3%, Japan 10.3%, US 8.1%, Thailand 6%, Indonesia 5.1%, South Korea 4.1% (2012)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$139.4 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$139.7 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Debt - external$100.1 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$98.82 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$143.4 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$132.4 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$133.5 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$120.4 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Exchange ratesringgits (MYR) per US dollar -
3.174 (2013 est.)
3.09 (2012 est.)
3.22 (2010 est.)
3.52 (2009)
3.33 (2008)
Fiscal yearcalendar year

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on June 30, 2015