Datuk Zainal Amanshah InvestKL Malayasia CEO

KUALA LUMPUR: GOVERNMENT investment agency InvestKL has attracted 51 multinational companies (MNCs) to set up regional hubs in Greater Kuala Lumpur/Klang Valley (Greater KL), pulling in RM5.88 billion investments since 2011.

In the process, more than 7,000 jobs had been created in Greater KL, according to InvestKL.

Last year, InvestKL secured 10 MNCs, with RM589 million in approved and committed investments, said  InvestKL chief executive officer Datuk Zainal Amanshah at a briefing yesterday.

He said this year, InvestKL was targeting to attract 13 MNCs.

Zainal said it could be more challenging because of the volatile global economy, slump in commodity prices, China’s slowdown and possible United States Federal Reserve rate hikes.

However, he said the Asean Economic Community and Malaysia’s strong economic fundamentals continued to be big draws for investors.

Zainal also said in the next 12 to 18 months, Kuala Lumpur’s connectivity would improve with the mass rapid transit project coming online, making the capital city even more attractive to investors. He said InvestKL was focusing on attracting businesses in oil and gas (O&G), engineering and construction, aerospace, information and communications technology and retail space.

Zainal said he was confident InvestKL would be able draw 100 MNCs to Greater KL by 2020.

He said Europe and the United States remained the biggest investors, with 25 European MNCs and 16 American corporate giants outstripping the 11 from Asia Pacific.

He added that MNCs with confirmed investments were mostly from sectors that were skewed towards services, such as business services, engineering services and O&G.

He also said 83 per cent of the jobs created had been taken up by Malaysians.

Zainal said a salary band analysis showed that the country was moving towards the creation of high-income jobs. He also pointed to the positive spillover effects of the MNCs on ancillary services such as food and beverage, hotels and partnerships between conglomerates and universities in Malaysia.

Zainal said of the RM5.88 billion investments, 31.8 per cent had been realised.

Also present at the briefing was InvestKL chairman Datuk Seri Michael Yam.

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