As the world becomes ever more connected through globalization, an increasing number of entrepreneurs and companies are looking to do business in foreign countries. The choice to pack up and set up shop overseas can be a wise one if the country in question is friendly to businesses as well as expats. And in Malaysia this is certainly the case.
Many businesses relocate to countries classified as “emerging economies,” due to a number of factors such as a cheap labor force and low overhead. But those interested in setting up shop in a foreign country can find all these things and more in Malaysia, despite the fact it is one of the strongest economies in all of Asia. Here are some other incentives that may be attractive to business owners who are considering this stable nation with a rich financial history.
Healthy economic growth
Malaysia’s economy experiences consistent growth because of one reason: diversification. The country understands that its current high level of competitiveness is a direct result of its broad-based economy, which allows for sustainability. Deliberate efforts have been made in order to boost and enhance a number of business sectors including manufacturing, agriculture and the service industry. And Malaysia is a country that is always in pursuit of new growth sources, such as bio and communications technologies.
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Business friendly government
No matter the country of operation, it is vital for any business to be working within the framework of a supportive government. After all, an ally is always more welcome than an adversary. As for Business in Malaysia, the government’s focus on a “growth based” economy is precisely the reason the country is pro business. The value the country places on things like profit is just one reason Malaysia is one of the more popular manufacturing and export bases in Asia. In fact, the government maintains an ongoing dialogue with the business community in order to gain valuable feedback in which to help shape government policy.
Cheap office space
The office market in Malaysia’s capital city of Kuala Lumpur is in somewhat of a state of flux. Developers were in the midst of completing millions of square feet of office space when the economic downturn of 2008 hit. These building projects continued through 2010 with supply far exceeding demand. This is good news for potential tenants who can expect to pay between RM5 and RM6.50 per square foot of grade A office space. That translates to savings between 20% and 25%, says Christopher Boyd, an associate chairman with Re-Group Associates.
A smart work force
Malaysia places a high value on education and productivity, even going so far as to support human resource development across all business sectors. That means investors new to the area have at their disposal a young, vibrant and highly educated work force. The country enjoys a 94% literacy rate among its citizens and those entering the workforce have, on average, completed at least 11 years of schooling. The best part is that the costs for hiring workers in Malaysia are competitive with many other countries in Asia.
Malaysia also understands that a highly developed infrastructure benefits both business and the citizenry. This is precisely the reason for the country’s relentless drive toward an ever more efficient and upgraded infrastructure. Those doing business in Malaysia can count on, among other things, modern international airports, a multimedia super corridor containing a multimedia university and a major transportation hub connecting all major railways arteries.
These are just a few reasons to consider establishing a business in Malaysia. And because the government has a well established, decades-long commitment to economic growth, investors can be reasonably certain the pro-business climate will remain a reality for the foreseeable future.
Jason Lee works with high quality office space in Malaysia and specializes in real estate.