Budget 2019 to strengthen KL’s position as regional hub for large MNCs

Kuala Lumpur, 9 November 2018 - The Budget 2019 proposal will reinforce Kuala Lumpur’s proposition as a business, innovation and talent hub for large multinational corporations, said InvestKL Chief Executive Officer Datuk Zainal Amanshah.

Some of the measures tabled will help attract foreign direct investments, including the appointment of two ministers to spearhead the ease of doing business committee, RM210 million allocation to encourage the transition towards Industry 4.0, as well as steps aimed at upskilling of local graduates, Zainal said.

“Greater Kuala Lumpur has been an ideal location housing many multinational with Industry 4.0 technology and this will encourage and attract more multinationals to use this region to set up their businesses that will boost the city as a regional digital hub for innovation in Malaysia,” Zainal said.

Cheah Kok Hoong, Group CEO of Hitachi Sunway Information Systems, foresees the increased adoption of Industry 4.0 will lead to rising demand for Product Lifecycle Management services, data centre services and cyber security solutions. Hitachi Sunway looks forward to support more companies in achieving their I4.0 goals with its expertise and track records, he said.

“Malaysia is on a path to rebuild itself. We believe digital transformation such as Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) will be a driving growth enabler for the nation. Hence, with the various tax incentives in placed for Industry 4.0 (I4.0), it will definitely accelerate I4.0 adoption,” Cheah said.

For International SOS (M) Sdn Bhd, a medical services company, the highlight of Budget 2019 is the focus given to healthcare and education, with RM29 billion and RM60 billion allocated to each sector, respectively, said Managing Director David Ng.

“We are also very pleased with the positive changes in the principal hub incentives. It is proposed that such companies be eligible for a concessionary 10% income tax rate on overall statutory income for a period of 5 years. This proposal will encourage companies like us with Principal Hub status to increase our investments,” Ng said.

With all the initiatives announced by the Ministry of Finance, the real test for the government now lies in the execution and having the discipline to not have overruns, according to Zakri Khir, CEO of Allianz Malaysia Berhad.

“We should not compare the current budget to the previous one as the new government only took over about six months ago. We know how difficult it is to do a turnaround and there is only so much you can do in such a short span of time.”

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