In the past 3o years, Malaysia's economy has boomed, wiping out some of the poverty and inequality income rates of before. Malaysia is an upper-middle income economy with a gross national income of USD 8,770 per capita. Malaysia is also competitive, ranking 12th (out of 135 economies) in the World Bank 2013. In 2012, Malaysia's economy ranked 3rd in Southeast Asia and 29th in the world.
Once dependent on raw materials to export, today the income of the economy is generated as a leading exporter of electrical appliances, electronic parts and components, palm oil, and natural gas. Malaysia is the world's largest exporter of electrical goods, rubber, textiles and chemicals.
In 2010, Malaysia launched the New Economic Model (NEM), which aims for the country to reach high income status by 2020. The NEM envisions economic growth that is primarily driven by the private sector and which moves the Malaysian economy into higher value-added activities in both industry and services. To achieve these goals, Malaysia will need better skills, more competition, a leaner public sector, a better knowledge base, smarter cities, and greater efforts to ensure environmental sustainability.
Increasing market growth has been in information and communication technology, and it is a provider of employment. Other expanding markets are biotechnology, nanotechnology, renewable energies and tourism (including medical tourism).
Major multinational companies with expat personnel working in Malaysia include Accenture, CIMB Group, Exxon Mobil, HSBC, KPMG, Maybank, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Public Bank Berhad, Schlumberger, and Shell.
Regarded as a global city, Kuala Lumpur is the economic and commercial center for the country. With the development of Kuala Lumpur International-Airport and Port Klang, Kuala Lumpur has been reinforced as the business hub of Malaysia. Many government institutions are based in the city, while many multi nation companies and foreign corporations are heavily represent. It's not only an important player in SE Asian countries but also the world. KL attracts people from all over the world, to add the growing economy.
Kuala Lumpur is one of the centers of global Islamic finance with a rising number of financial institutions providing Islamic financing, including the world's largest Islamic bank, Al-Rajhi Bank and the Kuwait Finance House. In recent years, financial institutions from the gulf region have apeared, including Dow Jones & Company, The Bursa Malaysia. The Bank of Malaysia also has its headquarters here, and so do numerous branches of foreign banks and insurance companies with international staff.
Tourism contributes significantly to the capital's economy. Kuala Lumpur was the 5th most visited city in the world in 2008, with 9 million visitors. Business tourism is also rising, as conferences and conventions have become an important source of the income. The tourism industry requires a very wide range of services and facilities which provides employment to all sectors of the population and helps to diversify Kuala Lumpur's economy. The potential of tourism in Kuala Lumpur is huge and must be developed and promoted as a major economic generator.
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