Japanese Manufacturers in Malaysia to Boost Exports to Maintain Operations

November 28, 1998 - 0:0
KUALA LUMPUR Japanese manufacturers in Malaysia are likely to increase their exports to offset lower domestic demand stemming from the economic slowdown, the head of Japan's leading business group reportedly said. Takashi Imai, chairman of the Japan Federation of Economic organizations (Keidanren), was quoted as saying in Friday's edition of business times here that he expected Japanese ventures to step up capital investment in the next few years.

I also believe an increasing number of Japanese or Japanese-related companies, which have been manufacturing for the domestic market, will look to the overseas markets in order to maintain their current scales of operation, he reportedly said following talks with Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. During the talks, Mahathir told us that the Malaysian government would like to maintain the policy of fixing the ringgit to the U.S. dollar at 3.80 ringgit for a while, the Keidanren chief said, referring to Mahathir's move to abandon floating exchange rates at the beginning of September. However, he did not dismiss the possibility that the Malaysian government may have to review the rate ... if Malaysia's export competitiveness comes to be affected by fluctuations in other currencies, he added.

Imai said Mahathir also asked about progress in Malaysia's request for two billion dollars in loans 1.5 billion dollars to finance eight projects and another 500 million dollars in trade financing. He said the Keidanren would present Malaysia's requests for financial assistance to the Japanese government. (AFP)