Malaysian PM elated with Malaysia’s robust economic performance
Datuk Seri Najib Razak said he was elated over Malaysia’s robust economic performance in 1Q2017.the first quarter of this year. Speaking at the National Export Council Meeting, Datuk Seri Najib, who is also Finance Minister, said Malaysia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew at 5.6 per cent with higher private consumption and investment as the main driver of growth supported by better performance in the external sector. “Malaysia continued to register a trade surplus of RM18.9 billion,” he said. Datuk Seri Najib added that both export and import grew at 21.4 per cent and 27.7 per cent, respectively, to RM224.7 billion and RM205.8 billion, respectively, in the first quarter of 2017.

Doodle 4 Malaysia and get featured on Google!
Google Malaysia is bringing back its Doodle 4 Google competition this year, inviting all Malaysian school students to showcase their fun, creativity, and originality by submitting unique doodle designs with a local flavour. The theme of this year’s Doodle 4 Google competition is “Celebrating Malaysia’s Diversity” and it is open to all Malaysian primary and secondary school students within the following four age categories:7-9, 10-12, 13-15, 16-17. The winner will be featured front and centre on google.com.my this coming Malaysia Day, September 16. Doodles are thematic changes made to the Google logo and typically done to celebrate special occasions, cultural moments, and the lives of pioneers, scientists, musicians, and artists who have who have helped shape history. These doodles are usually created by Google’s own doodle team and exceptions are rare, as in the case of Doodle 4 Google Malaysia. The Doodle 4 Google competition is open starting today and the closing date for contest submission is 31 July 2017 (midnight).

Malaysia’s manufacturing output slides after four-month rebound
Malaysia’s manufacturing sector contracted in May after a good run in the first four months of 2017. According to a report by Nikkei Malaysia, the Nikkei Malaysia Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for the country’s manufacturing sector dipped below the 50.0 to 48.7 in May, signalling a renewed deterioration. In April, the PMI score was 50.7, which was a marginal improvement for the first time in two year. Figures greater than 50.0 show overall improvement of operating conditions in the manufacturing sector. The report noted that while output, new orders and purchasing activity contracted, the only positive outcome from this scenario came from the employment segment, which showed more job creation for the first time since January. “Employment rose for the first time in four months and firms remained optimistic towards the 12-month outlook. The report did not mention the degree of positive sentiment. However, in looking ahead, the report said manufacturers were optimistic about their growth prospects as higher sales, new projects and new product lines were expected to underpin output over the next 12 months.

3M PARTNERS LMALL.MY to strengthen e-commerce presence
3M Malaysia today strengthened its presence in the e-commerce arena by partnering with LMall.my, the first and only exclusive premium marketplace for brands managed by Interbase Resources Sdn Bhd.  The partnership guarantees its shoppers 100% assured, genuine products delivered directly by a 3M eDistributor who works with 3M Malaysia to establish the brand’s official e-commerce presence.

China pushes yuan to seven-month highs
China’s central bank today pushed the reference rate for the yuan up by 0.8 per cent, the midpoint’s second largest one-day appreciation since the currency was de-pegged from the US dollar in 2005, as it wages war on depreciation expectations. The spot rate followed suit, crossing the 6.8 per US dollar level for the first time since Nov 11 to trade at 6.7923 at 0333 GMT. The yuan has now been guided about 1.5 per cent higher since May 24, when Moody’s Investors Service downgraded China’s sovereign credit rating for the first time since 1989. In the offshore market, the currency has strengthened against the US dollar by about 2 per cent over that period.