Bloomberg: Singapore’s economic lead over Malaysia is Shrinking

In an article on Tuesday (17 Jul), Bloomberg noted that the economic gap between Singapore and its Northern neighbour is set to shrink over the next year.

The author noted that after trailing for a third consecutive year, Malaysia “is inching closer to regaining its lead over Singapore’s economy”.

Malaysia’s GDP in 2017 was $314.5 billion, which is approximately $9.4 billion less than Singapore’s $323.9 billion”

However, Malaysia’s faster economic growth will mean that the gap is closing.

Based on median estimates of economists surveyed by Bloomberg, Malaysia’s economy will expand by about 5.5% in 2018 as compared to 3.1% for Singapore. In other words, the deficit will shrink to just over $2 billion next year.

Businesses in Malaysia are more confident with the Pakatan Harapan coalition government

A news report from Malaysia’s New Straits Times (21 May) said that the appointment of Billionaire Robert Kuok as part of the Council of Elders (CoE) will enhance confidence in the stock market and local government.

Malaysian Industrial Development Finance research head Redza Rahman felt that Kuok’s experience is dealing with the Chinese and Hong Kong governments would be extremely useful to ensure that Malaysia’s relationship with its biggest trading partner continued to be on cordial basis.

Agreeing, Maybank’s Head of Research Wong Chew Hann added that the CoE “comprises very experienced and well-respected names in the investment community.” Amongst others, committee members include former Finance Minister Tun Daim Zainuddin and former Central Bank governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz.

More recently (28 Jun), China’s Xin Hua news reported that Malaysian businesses were more optimistic about the new Pakatan Harapan government. Surveying close to 3,500 SMEs and corporates, the survey said that business outlook in the near term remains upbeat with expected improvements in both turnover and profitability.

What do you think?