malaysia

 
 

Analysts downgrade Malaysia’s GDP forecasts after slow 1H18

KUCHING: Analysts are lowering their growth forecasts for Malaysia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) following a lower-than-expected slowdown in the second quarter of 2018 (2Q18) to 4.5 per cent year on year (y-o-y) from 5.4 in 1Q18. Kenanga Investment Bank Bhd (Kenanga Research) saw that the lower GDP in 2Q18 was below both consensus and house […]


Auto sales hit second highest in history in zero-GST period

KUCHING: Analysts are optimistic on sales of cars as total industry volume (TIV) in July 2018 accelerated to 68,000 units – its second highest monthly volume in the history of Malaysia. Affin Hwang Investment Bank Bhd (AffinHwang Capital) saw that demand for local cars last month remained strong. “Riding on the joyful tax holiday promotions, […]


DRB-Hicom shares gain on Proton-Geely China JV pact

PETALING JAYA: DRB-Hicom Bhd's share price gained 3.81% or 9 sen to close at RM2.45 with 22.73 million shares done today, on news of a joint venture in China which will enable subsidiary Proton Holdings Bhd to assemble and market cars there.

This is DRB-Hicom's highest gain since Aug 13, having closed at RM2.32 last Monday. The stock has been fluctuating since.

Proton Holdings and Zhejiang Geely Holding Group entered into a heads of agreement to set up an equal stake joint venture (JV) company which will enable Proton to assemble and market its cars in China.

DRB-Hicom said in a statement yetoday that the partnership via the yet to be named JV entity includes the setting up of a production facility in China which will assemble vehicles, and the development of a network of dealers to market the Proton range in China.

The portfolio of cars for China will primarily come from existing Geely platforms, although the external design of the vehicles will be undertaken by Proton. However, the agreement also provides for existing Proton platforms that are found suitable to be developed into models for the Chinese market.

DRB-Hicom Group managing director Datuk Seri Syed Faisal Albar said Geely's entry as a strategic partner of Proton has paved an easier route for Proton's entry into the lucrative Chinese market.

“Clearly with Geely on board, Proton's route into China has become more tenable. Part of Geely's role is to secure the manufacturing licences and regulatory approvals required for such a venture under China's regulations. Geely will also identify a suitable location where the manufacturing facility is to be based”, he added.

Existing Proton component vendors that have quality and a competitive edge may also be considered as suppliers for the JV company. This, Syed Faisal said, should sit well with the Malaysian government which has often prodded Malaysian component makers to venture into the Chinese market.

China's passenger car sales have grown tremendously over the last 10 years—from the sale of 6.76 million passenger cars in 2008 to 24 million units in 2017. Geely is seen as the clear leader in the segment, as the first privately-owned Chinese carmaker to sell over one million units.


DNeX unit gets time extension to challenge MyCC’s proposed RM17.4m fine

PETALING JAYA: Dagang Nexchange Bhd's (DNeX) wholly owned subsidiary Dagang Net Technologies Sdn Bhd has obtained an extension of time until Sept 3 to make an oral representation to the Malaysia Competition Commission (MyCC) with regard to a proposed RM17.4 million fine for alleged abuse of dominant power.

DNeX is challenging MyCC's proposed decision.

MyCC alleged that Dagang Net abused its position as a monopoly in the provision of trade facilitation services under the National Single Window, refusing to supply electronic mailboxes to end users of the Customs Information System, and imposing barriers to entry to the extent that may harm competition.

Dagang Net was also provisionally found to have imposed an exclusivity clause on its business partners, which would have had the effect of distorting competition in an upcoming market by creating barriers to entry for Dagang Net's competitors.

MyCC proposed a directive on Dagang Net to cease and desist the infringing conduct of imposing any future clauses in its MyChannel Partner Agreements and any future conditions that new and/or additional mailboxes will not be provided to end users.

It also proposed for Dagang Net's directors and senior management to enrol into a competition law compliance programme and training within three months.


Hess’ Southeast Asian oil & gas assets draw interest

SINGAPORE: The Southeast Asian offshore natural gas assets of US oil and gas producer Hess Corp, estimated to be worth as much as US$5 billion (RM22.05 billion), have attracted takeover interest from firms including Thailand's PTTEP PCL and Austrian energy group OMV AG, people familiar with the matter said.

Hess, which has a collection of gas fields in North Malay Basin in offshore Malaysia and in the Malaysia-Thailand Joint Development Area (JDA) with 50% equal partner Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas), has not yet decided whether to sell the assets, according to financial and industry sources.

Their estimated market value would be US$4 billion to US$5 billion, the sources said. They declined to be identified because the takeover interest had not previously been made public.

The interest in Hess' assets, among the few long-term and sizeable projects in the region, comes as cashed-up firms such as PTTEP are buying overseas assets, while the likes of OMV and Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co have been scouring for acquisitions in Asia.

Hess, which hasn't reported a profit since 2014, has been under pressure from investors to make money. It posted a smaller-than-expected loss in April-June, but many of its peers have turned profitable after the oil price crash two years ago, fuelling questions as to why Hess has not followed suit.

The firm is developing large offshore oil projects in South America and US shale oil. In 2014, it sold its Thai assets to PTTEP for US$1 billion and also sold its Indonesian assets.

“We don't comment on rumours but we continue to believe that our Malaysia assets are an important part of our portfolio and our value creation strategy,” Hess spokeswoman Lorrie Hecker said in a statement.

“JDA and North Malay Basin are significant long-term, low-cost cash generators, producing stable production and free cash flows, which provide funding for our compelling, long-term opportunities in Guyana and the Bakken (in the United States).”

“A number of parties have looked (at the Hess assets) and have teams working on this,” said one financial source.

“Increasing numbers of companies believe a sale is probable,” said the person, adding that Hess' project would also appeal to private-equity backed players and mid-sized energy firms.

He said PTTEP was working with a financial adviser for its interest in the assets.

Another source said some parties had done preliminary work on the assets and were waiting to see if Hess would start a sale process.

OMV and Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co declined to comment.

This month, OMV won regulatory approval to buy Royal Dutch Shell's upstream assets in New Zealand for US$578 million. OMV said in March that the acquisition was a key step to develop Australasia into a core region in line with its new strategy.

Petronas declined comment while PTTEP said it was focused on expanding in Southeast Asia.

“PTTEP is interested in M&A deals with particular focus on assets located in PTTEP's region of experience such as South East Asia, which is PTTEP's areas of expertise and the operating risk is moderately low,” the Thai company told Reuters, declining to comment specifically on Hess assets.


China’s MoF, Securities Commission Malaysia sign MoU on regulatory cooperation

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 20 — The Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) and China’s Ministry of Finance (MOF China) today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for cross-border regulatory cooperation on accounting and audit matters under their…


‘Supplementary budget not needed’

PUTRAJAYA: The government does not need a supplementary budget for now as the country’s fiscal deficit is under control, says Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Ir Amiruddin Hamzah.

He said a well-managed and sustainable fiscal deficit will strengthen Malaysia’s economy and the country will not need to borrow again.

“We will not need a supplementary as the government is controlling the fiscal deficit in terms of expenditure and income. Even if there are changes, controlling the fiscal deficit is our priority in growing the national economy,” he said after handing over RM34 million in financing under the MyCreative Ventures financing scheme to 19 creative companies here today.

On Aug 12, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the government was considering tabling a supplementary budget.

Earlier, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng announced that Malaysia’s projected fiscal deficit would rise to RM40.1 billion in 2018 from RM39.8 billion, which would maintain the federal government budget deficit at 2.8% of gross domestic product (GDP).

Amiruddin in his opening speech urged companies in the creative industry to play a role in formulating a product commercialisation plan by combining the creative arts with the tourism sector.

“This initiative has the potential to contribute to the nation’s economy as the tourism sector, which is based on the arts and culture, could generate a lucrative revenue, for example, a country like France earns about RM934 billion a year from their tourism sector,” he said.

MyCreative CEO Riza Saian said Malaysia’s creative industry contributes just 2% to GDP compared to over 5% in Indonesia, Singapore and Korea.

“Many creative enterprises in Malaysia are at an early stage and need more time to earn substantial profits. Malaysia has a wealth of creative talents, but their business skills on the whole need to be enhanced,” he said.

Riza noted that RM200 million had been invested in 138 creative companies under 10 categories – visual arts, traditional arts, music, fashion, design, creative studies, culinary arts, creative content, literature and performance arts.

The financing is in line with MyCreative’s objective of supporting the implementation of the national creative industry policy and stimulating the growth of the creative industry through a strategic and innovative financing scheme in the form of equities, loans or a combination of both, he said. – Bernama


Supplementary budget not needed for now

PUTRAJAYA: The government does not need a supplementary budget for now as the country’s fiscal deficit is under control, says Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Ir Amiruddin Hamzah.

He said a well-managed and sustainable fiscal deficit will strengthen Malaysia’s economy and the country will not need to borrow again.

“We will not need a supplementary as the government is controlling the fiscal deficit in terms of expenditure and income. Even if there are changes, controlling the fiscal deficit is our priority in growing the national economy,” he said after handing over RM34 million in financing under the MyCreative Ventures financing scheme to 19 creative companies here today.

On Aug 12, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the government was considering tabling a supplementary budget.

Earlier, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng announced that Malaysia’s projected fiscal deficit would rise to RM40.1 billion in 2018 from RM39.8 billion, which would maintain the federal government budget deficit at 2.8% of gross domestic product (GDP).

Amiruddin in his opening speech urged companies in the creative industry to play a role in formulating a product commercialisation plan by combining the creative arts with the tourism sector.

“This initiative has the potential to contribute to the nation’s economy as the tourism sector, which is based on the arts and culture, could generate a lucrative revenue, for example, a country like France earns about RM934 billion a year from their tourism sector,” he said.

MyCreative CEO Riza Saian said Malaysia’s creative industry contributes just 2% to GDP compared to over 5% in Indonesia, Singapore and Korea.

“Many creative enterprises in Malaysia are at an early stage and need more time to earn substantial profits. Malaysia has a wealth of creative talents, but their business skills on the whole need to be enhanced,” he said.

Riza noted that RM200 million had been invested in 138 creative companies under 10 categories – visual arts, traditional arts, music, fashion, design, creative studies, culinary arts, creative content, literature and performance arts.

The financing is in line with MyCreative’s objective of supporting the implementation of the national creative industry policy and stimulating the growth of the creative industry through a strategic and innovative financing scheme in the form of equities, loans or a combination of both, he said. – Bernama


AirAsia perks for PUMM members

SEPANG: AirAsia has inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Malaysia Entrepreneurs’ Development Association (PUMM) to provide members of the association with more travel flexibility through AirAsia MyCorporate services.

MyCorporate is a suite of products exclusively made with the business traveller in mind. It consists of three bundle options, depending on the requirements of the traveller and the company budget – Fare Only, Corporate Lite and Corporate Full Flex.

More than 2,400 medium and small enterprises will be able to enjoy the privileges of AirAsia MyCorporate, such as flight-change flexibility, essential add-ons to provide extra comfort, more savings with low fares and earn up to 3x AirAsia BIG points.

AirAsia Malaysia head of commercial Spencer Lee said in a statement, the airline is looking forward to exploring the opportunities to work with the local entrepreneurs to feature their products on its e-marketplace called OURSHOP.

He said the products could range from food and beverage to accessories or cosmetics, where guests are able to make their purchase before boarding and collect their items on board or at selected airports.

“This will be a good platform for local brands to be known in Malaysia and Asean, subsequently giving a lift for the entrepreneurs business to reach the international market,” he added.


AirAsia perks for entrepreneurs’ development association members

SEPANG: AirAsia has inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Malaysia Entrepreneurs’ Development Association (PUMM) to provide members of the association with more travel flexibility through AirAsia MyCorporate services.

MyCorporate is a suite of products exclusively made with the business traveller in mind. It consists of three bundle options, depending on the requirements of the traveller and the company budget – Fare Only, Corporate Lite and Corporate Full Flex.

More than 2,400 medium and small enterprises will be able to enjoy the privileges of AirAsia MyCorporate, such as flight-change flexibility, essential add-ons to provide extra comfort, more savings with low fares and earn up to 3x AirAsia BIG points.

AirAsia Malaysia head of commercial Spencer Lee said in a statement, the airline is looking forward to exploring the opportunities to work with the local entrepreneurs to feature their products on its e-marketplace called OURSHOP.

He said the products could range from food and beverage to accessories or cosmetics, where guests are able to make their purchase before boarding and collect their items on board or at selected airports.

“This will be a good platform for local brands to be known in Malaysia and Asean, subsequently giving a lift for the entrepreneurs business to reach the international market,” he added.