The National Export Council (NEC) convened for the third time this year with a number of strategies to accelerate exports amid the challenging global economic scenario.
Chaired by the Prime Minister Najib Razak, the meeting deliberated on initiatives and action plans to increase exports Matrade released via a statement.
At the meeting, Bank Negara Malaysia highlighted developments and the outlook of Malaysia’s current account in the Balance of Payment.
The meeting concluded that efforts to increase exports of products and services must be intensified to ensure that Malaysia continues to enjoy a healthy surplus in our current account.
Efforts should also be taken to increase utilisation of local products and services in a number of mega construction projects.
The meeting also discussed initiatives under the Logistics and Trade Facilitation Masterplan.
NEC recognised that it is important to ensure that Malaysia has a dynamic export ecosystem in the areas of logistics and trade regulations that are conducive to trade.
Several measures have been implemented such as the improvement in the standard operating procedures on movement of goods to reduce processes and documentation by companies, saving time and costs for the industry.
The Government, especially through the Malaysia Productivity Corporation (MPC) and The Royal Malaysian Customs, will continue its efforts to further streamline procedures to facilitate exports.
For the automotive industry, strategies to increase its exports encompass initiatives to raise competitiveness of local manufacturers, product diversification and amplifying export promotion in high potential markets.
In 2015, Malaysia exported auto parts and components worth RM9.8 billion and imported RM11.7 billion. By 2020, it is aimed for the deficit to be reduced by half.
For the aerospace industry, the export strategy laid out is in line with the Malaysian Aerospace Industry Blueprint 2030, which focuses on capturing new markets and strengthening the local supply chain.
The strategies include integrating Malaysian aerospace players into the global supply chain of Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and major Tier 1 suppliers, growing the Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul services and developing Malaysia into a hub for OEM operations.
In 2015, Malaysia’s exports of aircraft and associated equipment amounted to RM4.2 billion while imports were recorded at RM10 billion.
The NEC had also endorsed the need to attract more healthcare travellers to Malaysia in efforts to boost export contribution of medical services to Malaysia’s economy.
By 2020, it is targeted to generate export revenue of RM2.8 billion with a stretch target of RM4.2 billion.
The Government will implement new measures to attract and facilitate arrival of healthcare travellers.
Following the meeting, a launch on a brand awareness campaign on exports by Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) called Beyond Nations took place. The campaign is targeted at socialising (merakyatkan) exports.
The campaign was launched by Najib at his office. The Beyond Nations campaign’s main objective is to encourage more SMEs to export. The campaign’s main pillars are to communicate, educate and nurture SMEs, especially first-time exporters.
The effort is one of the government’s continuous initiatives to increase SMEs’contribution to exports, currently 17.6% to 23% by 2020.