Malaysia's July IPI growth beats expectation at 6.1 pct

Added On September 11, 2017

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- Malaysia's Index of Industrial Production (IPI) surged 6.1 percent year-on-year in July, mainly driven by growth in manufacturing and electricity sectors, said Malaysia's statistics department Monday.

The manufacturing output rose 8 percent year-on-year in July, while electricity sector grew 7.9 percent year-on-year. The mining sector also increased marginally by 0.2 percent.

The growth in manufacturing was mainly supported by higher growth in electrical and electronics (E&E) products that grew 10.5 percent, and food, beverages and tobacco which soared 19.2 percent.

MIDF Research's chief economist Kamaruddin Mohd Nor told Xinhua that the IPI growth was significantly above his expectation of 5.4 percent.

The faster growth rate may be due to the export that was holding well, especially the E&E sector, he added.

However, he expects the growth to slow down in the second half due to unfavorable base effect, and maintains his full year IPI growth forecast at 5.3 percent.

AmBank Group chief economist Anthony Dass also told Xinhua that other than stronger export, domestic activities also slowly picked up, underpinned by major infrastructure projects.

Nevertheless, he expects the IPI growth to reach its peak at the end of third quarter, and normalize in the last quarter, due to the cyclical factor.

"Overall, it is a good year as we have revised up our economic growth forecast for the country twice," said Dass who also expects Malaysia's economy to grow at 5.7 percent to 5.9 percent this year.