KUALA LUMPUR (May 27): Malaysia is optimistic that the economic recovery will continue to be resilient in the third quarter of 2022 (3Q22), notwithstanding external risks and downward pressure after a favourable performance was seen in 1Q22, according to the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM).
Chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said many countries recorded a better performance in 1Q22, indicating that economic improvement is under way in spite of multiple ongoing global crises causing disruptions to the supply chain, inflationary pressures and the push for tightening of monetary policies.
For instance, he said, the European Union, the UK and the US recorded an expansion in gross domestic product (GDP), and a similar trend was observed in Asian countries like China, South Korea, the Philippines and Thailand.
“As for Malaysia, GDP grew better than expected by 5% in 1Q22 after registering a 3.6% growth in the previous quarter,” he said in a statement on Friday (May 27).
Citing the Malaysian Economic Statistics Review (MESR) Volume 5/2022 released by the DOSM on the same day, Mohd Uzir said several key countries’ economic indicators registered a positive trajectory in 1Q22.
“With regard to the external sector, the current account balance remained in a surplus at RM3 billion, mainly supported by net exports of goods.
“The investment performance also improved, with foreign direct investment recording a higher net inflow of RM24.4 billion, while direct investment abroad posted a lower net outflow of RM3.6 billion,” he said.
He added that trade continued with its robust performance whereby total trade posted a double-digit growth of 23.6% amounting to RM624.9 billion in 1Q22.
In terms of the performance in March 2022, Mohd Uzir said the Industrial Production Index posted a growth of 5.1% against March 2021, backed by the manufacturing index which rose 6.9% year-on-year (y-o-y) on exports and domestic-oriented outputs.
Meanwhile, he said the Consumer Price Index for March 2022 rose by 2.2% y-o-y, staying above Malaysia's average inflation rate of 1.9% from 2011 to March 2022.
“The Producer Price Index for local production also posted a double-digit growth of 11.6% compared with 9.7% in February 2022,” he said, adding that the Leading Index grew 0.4% month-on-month to 111.3 points, indicating an improved and favourable performance of Malaysia’s economy.
Mohd Uzir said the DOSM’s recent Business Tendency Statistics also highlighted that business sentiment remained positive for 2Q22, while for the forthcoming six months, the business sentiment outlook is also optimistic.