Diary of Events (December 2023 Issue)

1) 6th Showcase Malaysia – Seminar: Deepening Bangladesh and Malaysia’s Economic Relationship: Role of a Trade Agreement on 5 September 2023


MASSA was invited by the Bangladesh – Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) to speak on a panel in a Seminar titled “Deepening Bangladesh and Malaysia’s Economic Relationship: Role of a Trade Agreement” on 5 September 2023. This Seminar was held as part of the 6th Showcase Malaysia hosted by BMCCI in Sheraton Dhaka, Bangladesh.


The Session was attended by H.E. Haznah Md Hashm, High Commissioner of Malaysia to Bangladesh, and Dr M Masrur Reaz, Chairman, Policy Exchange Bangladesh was the moderator. A Keynote Paper was presented by Dr Mostafa Abid Khan, Former Member of Bangladesh Trade and Tariff Commission (BTTC).

The panel comprised of the following four speakers:

  1. 1. Mr Noor Md Mahbubul Haq, Additional Secretary (FTA), Ministry of Commerce
  2. 2. Mr Syed Moazzam Hossain, Past President, BMCCI & Managing Director of SMH Engineering Ltd
  3. 3. Mr Wan Ahmad Tarmizi Wan Idris (pic above, center), Trade Commissioner, MATRADE Chennai
  4. 4. Ms Ng Su Fun (pic above, right), Executive Secretary, MASSA


MASSA wish to thank the Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) for inviting MASSA to participate at the Seminar.


2) Meeting at EXIM Bank on 12 September 2023


The Export-Import Bank of Malaysia Berhad (EXIM Bank) invited MASSA for a meeting to discuss the business opportunities in Djibouti & East Africa on 23 September 2023 at EXIM Bank building. Dr Mohamed Ashraf Iqbal, Chairman, Waafi Bank was invited to present an overview on Djibouti and the business opportunities that Malaysian companies can avail to. Representatives from EXIM Bank, MASSA and the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) were present at the meeting.

The presentation highlighted that the country is positioning itself as the gateway to Africa, and as a new market for Malaysian products, goods and services to tap into as the nation pursues Djibouti Vision 2035. The meeting noted that there are many Djiboutians who were graduates from Malaysian universities. The meeting noted that MATRADE will be organising a webinar on Djibouti.

 

From right-to-left: Dr Mohamed Ashraf Iqbal, Chairman, Waafi Bank, Ms Azmin Hamzah, EXIM Bank, Dr Liza Mydin, Chief Strategy Officer, EXIM Bank, Ms Shamini Sakthinathan, FMM, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA, Ms Jess Chong, FMM and Mr Samuel Loh, MASSA.


3) Country Presentation by the Economic Development Board (EDB) Mauritius on 13 September 2023 at EQ Hotel, Kuala Lumpur


The Economic Development Board Mauritius (EDB) in collaboration with the High Commission of the Republic of Mauritius in Kuala Lumpur hosted a Country Presentation titled ‘Through Mauritius and Beyond’ on 13 September 2023. Members of MASSA and the MASSA Secretariat attended this event.


The Economic Development Board (EDB) of Mauritius, under the authority of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius and operating under the aegis of the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, is the national governmental agency for the promotion of Mauritius as an investment and business centre, a competitive export platform as well as an International Financial Centre (IFC). EDB Mauritius is the focal point and unique interface for all foreign nationals wishing to invest, trade, do business, work, live and retire in Mauritius. (www.edbmauritius.org).


 

The programme of the Country Presentation was as follows:

Time Item
10.00 am Welcome Address by H.E. Jagdishwar Goburdhun,

High Commissioner of Mauritius to Malaysia

10.10 am Keynote Address by Mr Hemraj Ramnial,

Chairman, Economic Development Board Mauritius

10.20 am Mauritius Country Presentation – Investment Opportunities Across Sectors by Mr Sachin Mohabeer, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Economic Development Board Mauritius
11.00 am Testimonial by Mr Abrar Anwar, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Bank (Mauritius)
11.20 am Q & A Session
12.00 noon Adjourn.

 

 

H.E. Jagdishwar Goburdhun, High Commissioner of Mauritius to Malaysia delivered the Welcome Address.

Mr Hemraj Ramnial, Chairman, Economic Development Board Mauritius delivered the Keynote Address.

Mr Sachin Mohabeer, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Economic Development Board Mauritius delivered the Mauritius Country Presentation – Investment Opportunities Across Sectors.

Mr Abrar Anwar, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Bank (Mauritius) delivered a testimonial on Standard Chartered Bank’s experience in Mauritius.

 


The Country Presentation highlighted how Mauritius can serve as the gateway for businesses to distribute their products and goods to the African continent and to other markets beyond Africa by leveraging Mauritius’ strong economic fundamentals, freeport services and broad FTAs especially with African nations, North America, Europe.


4) e-Commerce Association of Bangladesh (eCAB) and eCAB Women Forum Courtesy Call on MASSA on 15 September 2023


The e-Commerce Association of Bangladesh (eCAB) and eCAB Women Forum through the faciliation of the Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) paid a Courtesy Call on MASSA at its office on 15 September 2023. eCAB was represented at the meeting by Ms Naznin Nahar Begum and Ms Farha Mahmud Trina. MASSA was represented by Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary. Representatives from the Malaysian Autonomous Intelligence and Robotics Association (MyAIRA) were also present at the meeting.


(from left-to-right)

Ms Sarah Bakri, MyAIRA, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA, Ms Naznin Nahar Begum, eCAB, Ms Farha Mahmud Trina, eCAB and Ms Hanniz Lam, MyAIRA.


5) MASSA-CILT-MAPAN Webinar: Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and its Adoption in Malaysia on 27 September 2023 via Zoom


MASSA with the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) Malaysia and the Malaysian Association of Public Advocacy for Nature (MAPAN) jointly organised a webinar attended by over 100 participants, titled ‘Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and its Adoption in Malaysia’ on 27 September 2023 over Zoom.

This webinar was organised to provide insights into the current developments in the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) spectrum in Malaysia, and to equip Malaysian businesses with practical insights and inputs from industry experts and peers who have made / are making the transition to adopt ESG in their operations.


The programme of the Webinar was as follows:

Time Item
10.00 am Opening Remarks by YBhg Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President, MASSA

 

10.10 am Current Development in the ESG Spectrum and Malaysia’s National ESG Framework by Mr Ben Ong, Chairman, MAPAN

 

10.30 am ESG Adoption Journey, Best Practices and Pitfalls to Avoid by Mr Shane Guha Thakurta, General Manager, Investor Relations and Sustainability, IJM Corporation Berhad

 

10.50 am Cascasding ESG Adoption to Vendors – Challenges and Lessons Learnt by Mr Chan Huan Ong, Assistant General Manager, IJM IBS Sdn Bhd

 

11.10 – 11.30 am Q & A Session and Closing Remarks by Moderator,

Mdm Reshma Yousuf, Council Member, CILT Malaysia


YBhg Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President, MASSA delivered the Opening Remarks.

Mr Ben Ong, Chairman, MAPAN delivered a presentation titled “Current Development in the ESG Spectrum and Malaysia’s National ESG Framework”.

Mr Shane Guha Thakurta, General Manager, Investor Relations and Sustainability, IJM Corporation Berhad delivered a presentation titled “ESG Adoption Journey, Best Practices and Pitfalls to Avoid”.

Mr Chan Huan Ong, Assistant General Manager, IJM IBS Sdn Bhd delivered a presentation titled “Cascading ESG Adoption to Vendors – Challenges and Lessons Learnt”.

Mdm Reshma Yousuf, Council Member, CILT Malaysia moderated the session and delivered the Closing Remarks.


A group photo of the webinar role players.


The webinar recording can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pqVMJX0IV_k.


6) Briefing on the Malaysia – Djibouti Business Forum on 9 October 2023 at Main Hall, Level 3, EXIM Bank Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur


MASSA and its membership were invited to attend a Briefing on the Malaysia – Djibouti Business Forum organised by the Export-Import Bank of Malaysia (EXIM Bank) at its premises in collaboration with MATRADE on 9 October 2023. MASSA was represented by YBhg Datuk Merlyn Kasimir, Hon. Assistant Secretary.


This Briefing was organised with the aim for the Malaysian business community to learn about Djibouti with the view to galvanise Malaysian participation at the Malaysia – Djibouti Business Forum and the 3rd Djibouti International Trade Fair from 29 November 2023 in Djibouti.


(from left-to-right) Mr Muhd Hairi Zainal Abidin, Manager, Central, West, South Asia & Africa Section, Export Promotion & Market Acccess Division, MATRADE, and Datuk Merlyn Kasimir, Hon. Asst. Secretary, MASSA.

(from left-to-right) Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA, Datuk Merlyn Kasimir, Hon. Asst. Secretary, MASSA and Dr Ashraf Iqbal, Chairman, Waafi Bank. 


 The itinerary of the Briefing was as follows:


Mr Arshad Ismail, President / Chief Executive Officer, EXIM Bank delivered the Welcome Remarks.

Mr Amran Yem, Senior Director, Export Promotion and Market Access Division, MATRADE delivered the Opening Remarks.

Pn Nurbayu Kasim Chang, Chief Business Officer, EXIM Bank delivered a presentation titled “EXIM Bank Financial Solution for Malaysian Companies”.

Dr Ashraf Iqbal, Chairman, Waafi Bank delivered a presentation titled “Discover & Explore Business Opportunities in Djibouti” wherein he highlighted that many Djiboutians were graduates of Malaysian universities and that Djibouti is positioning itself to become the Singapore of Africa in line with its Djibouti Vision 2035 (https://economie.gouv.dj/vision-2035-english/).

Trade Officers from the National Investment Promotion Agency (NIPA) of Djibouti shared with participants the Sectorial Opportunities in Djibouti.

 


Photos of the participants at the Briefing.

Editorial

Greetings from MASSA !

In this August newsletter, we feature the Republic of Zambia. We thank the good office of the High Commission of the Republic of Zambia for their insights to bring to readers information on the Republic of Zambia, focusing on its economy and business opportunities. The Country Feature had highlighted the investment climate of Zambia, and the potential for investment into its key sectors in mining, agriculture, manufacturing, tourism and energy.

The August edition also reports on MASSA’s engagements and collaborations with the Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) where MASSA had participated in a seminar organised by BMCCI on the Seminar on Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh at Royale Chulan Kuala Lumpur on 1 June 2023 and a series of online discussions with BMCCI on 14 June and 17 July 2023. These series of engagements were organised with the aim to inform the Malaysian business community about the latest trends, developments and business opportunities with and in Bangladesh, and to promote the 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The 6th Showcase Malaysia is a celebration of Malaysian products and services, and an opportunity for Malaysian businesses to explore the Bangladesh economy.

MASSA also had a series of meetings recently, which included a meeting with the High Commission of the Republic of Zambia on 3 May 2023, with the BMCCI leadership on 2 June 2023 and with the Undersecretary of the International Cooperation and Development Division (ICADD), Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia 15 June 2023. The discussions at these meetings, centred on areas where MASSA can collaborate, support and or complement the respective initiatives of the aforenamed offices. Our engagement with ICADD also resulted in a discussion between ICADD, MASSA and the Embassy of Malaysia in Timor Leste on 3 August 2023 to explore business opportunities in the nation as it prepares to integrate into the ASEAN membership.

We want to thank our members, ex-officio, contributors, and partners for your support to date. MASSA remains committed to present to members, trade and investment leads from the South-South countries, especially in light of the post-pandemic era that would require renewed efforts of cooperation from all levels to prepare businesses for the opportunities and challenges forthcoming.

In view of this, several events to keep an eye out for are in the works. One event we wish to highlight, and encourage readers to register and participate in is a Webinar Series on ESG for Malaysian businesses. This is a joint collaboration between MASSA, the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) Malaysia and the Malaysian Association of Public Advocacy for Nature (MAPAN) on 22 September and 10 November 2023. Do look for our weekly Circulars and postings in our website www.massa.net.my.

We look forward to meet members at MASSA’s upcoming events.

Thank you.

Ng Su Fun

Editorial MASSA

President’s Message

Tan Sri Azman Hashim
President
MASSA 


The global economy in 1H2023 appeared poised for a soft landing and gradual recovery from the blows of the pandemic and of Russia-Ukraine War. Supply-chain disruptions are unwinding, and the disruptions to energy and food markets are ebbing. Concurrently, the tightening of monetary policy by most central banks should start to bear fruit, with inflation tempering toward its targets.

Below the surface, however, indicators suggest that expectations should be tempered, as banking volatility and financial turbulence remain in the foreground. According to the OECD’s and IMF they anticipate global GDP growth to range between 2.7-2.8% in 2023.

The pace of expansion of the Malaysian economy is expected to moderate due to headwinds that include the uncertain global outlook, inflationary pressures, financial tightening, slower external demand and extreme climate occurrences. Nevertheless, some of the tailwinds for the Malaysian economy include the gradual recovery of international tourism arrivals with the reopening of international borders. Tourism Malaysia is targeting 16.1 million international visitor arrivals for 2023, a 60% increase compared with the estimated 10.1 million international visitor arrivals in 2022. Additionally, the decision of a number of electronics multinationals to invest in large-scale new projects in the nation also favourably attest to Malaysia’s competitiveness and position as a global hub for electronics, manufacturing, and services amongst others.

Given the global considerations, Malaysia’s strong economic fundamentals remain intact. The growth of the Malaysian economy in the first quarter of 2023 registered 5.6%, which is in line with our Government’s projection for Malaysia to achieve real GDP growth for the year 2023 to be between 4.0 – 5.0%.

The imperative for businesses to adopt ESG-compliant approaches and solutions continues to be underscored by the Government. The Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI) reported that between 2021 – September 2022, a total of RM4.9 billion in green technology projects had been approved. The business opportunities and economic spillover benefits of ESG adoption indicate a new front for businesses to leverage alongside digitalisation and digital transformation. We look forward to the Government’s policy approach for industries particularly under the National Carbon Policy, the New Industrial Master Plan (NIMP) 2023 and the i-ESG Framework when they are announced.

MASSA held its 32nd Annual General Meeting on a hybrid basis on 28 June 2023. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the outgoing Office Bearers and Executive Committee Members for their service from the term 2021-2023, in particular, I would like to place on record MASSA’s appreciation to Datuk Lim Fung Chee and Tan Sri Ghazzali Sheikh Abdul Khalid for their services as Vice-President and Member of the Executive Committee respectively.

I also take this occasion to congratulate and welcome the Office Bearers and Executive Committee Members who have been elected to serve the Association till 2025. In particular, I would like to thank Datuk T Y Lee, Dato’ Lawrence Lim Swee Lin and Datuk Merlyn Kasimir for agreeing to serve as Vice-President, Hon. Secretary and Hon. Assistant Secretary respectively, and to the new Members of the Executive Committee, Mr Arshad Ismail, Mr Lee Chun Fai and Mr Chang Yii Tan.

During the 32nd AGM, MASSA reaffirmed its mission to bridge the South-South, and to complement the Government’s initiatives to enhance ties and business linkages with developing countries by continuing to engage and collaborate with the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI) and its agencies, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Wisma Putra).

I appreciate the continuing support of all Members with your involvement at our regular meetings and events. I also wish to thank article and feature contributors from across the MASSA network, who have provided valuable and insightful articles for our newsletters and not forgetting the sponsors of our website.


Tan Sri Azman Hashim
President
1 August 2023

Country Feature – Republic of Zambia

REPUBLIC OF ZAMBIA

Located in the heart of Southern Africa, Zambia is one of the fastest growing economies with a population of 19.6 million people. The country, which sits on 752,618 square kilometres (over double the size of Malaysia), is blessed with abundant natural resources and vegetation, a diversity of wildlife, magnificent landscapes, and is home to the mighty Victoria Falls, one of the seven natural wonders of the world.


Image 1: Zambia’s location in the heart of Southern Africa

The country has very stable Macroeconomic Fundamentals with a growing GDP of about US$21 billion, inflation of 9.9% per annum and the local currency is performing very well against the United States Dollar and other major world-convertible currencies, appreciating by over 18.5% from January 1 to September 2022.

Zambia has proven to be a strategic hub for trade and investment due to its central location with eight neighbouring countries. Zambia is a member of the regional and continental economic communities that the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), Southern African Development Community (SADC) and African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Further, Zambia is well known as a haven of investments due to its unmatched investment climate, attractive investment incentives, ease of doing business, and investor-friendly policies supported by consistent policies and stable political will, rule of law, and peace that the country has enjoyed since her independence in 1964.

Economic Fundamentals

Official Language:    English

Main Languages:     Bemba, Tonga, Chichewa, Lozi, Kaonde, Luvale, Lunda

Population (2022):   19.6 million

GDP Per Capita:     USD 1,137.6 (World Bank 2021)

GDP 2021:              USD 22.15B (World Bank 2021)

Government:           Presidential Republic; Multi-Party Democracy

Unemployment:       13% (World Bank 2022)

Literacy:                  86.8% (2018)

Inflation:                  9.9%

 
Image 2: Map of Zambia

Zambia’s Business Environment

Zambia ranked 1st in Africa & 4th globally for Ease of Getting Credit in the 2020 project which provides objective measures of business regulations and their enforcement across 190 economies and selected cities at the subnational and regional level. The country boasts highly attractive Government securities and has a high rate of return on investment in Government bonds & bills. This is mainly due to conducive Governance, a skilled labour force and a good logistical network which helps facilitate international trade through implementation of web-based customs data management platform, ASYCUDA World, for easier exporting and importing. The wide network coverage includes 91% Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN).

Fig. 1: Recorded Investment 2018 to 2022 (US Dollar Billions)

Fig. 2: Recorded Investment by Sector 2018 to 2022 (US Dollar Millions)

Economic growth has been stable in Zambia which has elevated it to the 6th largest economy in SADC and to becoming an attractive investment destination. The figures below indicate Zambia’s investment and trade performance between 2018 and 2022.

Fig. 3: Zambia’s Trade 2018 to 2022

The main trade contributors in Zambia are highlighted in the table below.

Table 1: Major Exports and Imports with their Markets

Investment Sectors

Currently, the priority sectors for investment are manufacturing, mining and mineral beneficiation, agriculture, energy, information communication technology, infrastructure and tourism.

Foreign and local investors in priority sectors are eligible to qualify for certain predetermined incentives and this is administered through the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA). In addition, investors that setup in a Multi Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ) or industrial park are eligible for additional tax incentives. Incentives come in the form of fiscal and non-fiscal incentives.

The Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) is Zambia’s premier economic development Agency with a multifaceted mandate of promoting and facilitating trade, investment and enterprise development in the country. The Agency is also responsible for building and enhancing the country’s investment profile for increased capital inflows, capital formation, employment creation and growth of the Micro Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Sector.

Among the key services provided include:

  • • Issuance of investment and MFEZ/IP Permits
  • • Participation and facilitation in regional and international trade and investment fairs, exhibitions and missions;
  • • Participation and facilitation of business summits, conferences, workshops and business to business meetings;
  • • Facilitation of joint-venture partnerships and business match-making events between buyers and sellers
  • • Provision of export market information
  • • Developing Export Readiness of the Zambian enterprises, especially MSMEs to meet international customers’ requirements and needs, and compliance standards as well as norms
  • • Building the general business capacities of the entrepreneurs (the exporter and potential exporters)
  • • Product development to enable Zambian products meet international buyers’ requirements in terms of quality,
  • • Product Development
  • • Market and financial Linkages/Access
  • • Provision of Business Information and Market Intelligence e.g. identification of market opportunities and market access requirements;
  • • Provision of after care Services, Business Clinics and advisory services

The following Multi Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ) and Industrial Parks are currently operational in Zambia:

  • • Lusaka South Multi-Facility Economic Zone;
  • • ZCCZ Chambishi Multi Facility Economic Zone;
  • • ZCCZ Lusaka East Multi-Facility Economic;
  • • Jiangxi Multi Facility Economic Zone;
  • • Kalumbila Multi Facility Economic Zone;
  • • Roma Industrial Park; and
  • • Sub-Sahara Gemstone Exchange Industrial Park

These zones are provided with modern infrastructure in order to attract and facilitate the establishment of world-class enterprises in the country. The MFEZs blend the best features of the free trade zones, export processing zones, and the industrial parks/zones concept. They apply the administrative infrastructure, rules and regulations that are used as a benchmark among dynamic economies. The blending of physical infrastructure with an efficient and effective administrative infrastructure has created the ideal investment environment for attracting major world-class investors.

MINING

Zambia is the world’s eighth largest producer of copper. It produced over 880,000 metric tonnes in 2020 and holds 6% of the world’s known copper reserves. Kansanshi open pit mine is the largest copper mine in Africa, by capacity, Copper and cobalt, the country’s traditional exports, account for well over 70% of export earnings. Zambia’s copper mines are concentrated on the Copperbelt Province. More mines have been established in other parts of the country such as Solwezi and Kalumbila in the North-Western Province, which has seen accelerated growth in recent years and the Government of Zambia has taken note of the tremendous growth potential of this sector and set a target of increasing copper production from the current 800,000 metric tonnes per year, to 3 million metric tonnes per year over the next ten years. Policy revision that has removed double taxation and revised the tax framework, leveraging digital technology in the sector, and addition along the value chain will see more investment in the sector and make the target more achievable. The signing of an MOU between Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo leveraging regional resources towards a value chain for electronic vehicle battery manufacturing, as well as the $350 million investment by KoBold Metals to introduce Artificial Intelligence into

Other mineral endowments include gold, zinc, lead, iron ore, manganese, nickel, feldspar, sands, talc, barite, apatite, limestone, dolomite, uranium, coal, and gemstones (e.g. diamonds, emeralds, aquamarine, topaz, opal, agate and amethysts). Notably, Zambia produces over 20% of the world’s emeralds and has the capacity to increase its production. This extensive range of mineral resources, including a variety of industrial minerals and energy resources such as uranium, coal and hydrocarbons, presents investors with excellent opportunities, especially in the area of extraction and processing.

Zambia’s endowment of mineral resources is substantial, although the full potential of known deposits is yet to be realized. A 2013 World Bank geological analysis suggested that Zambia’s copper deposits were larger than previously estimated, signalling massive exploration potential. This potential is starting to be realized through recent exploration for oil and gas. Thirty Eight (38) exploration blocks have been demarcated in Zambia with twelve (12) of these blocks having been issued with licenses.

Since the privatization of the mines ended in 2000, approximately $17.50 billion has been invested in the sector by about 278 enterprises with large-scale copper mining accounting for more than 90% of these investments. In 2019, mining accounted for 9.9% of GDP, 26.7% of Government revenue, 2.4% of direct employment and 77% of exports.

Even with so much investment in the sector, existing mines have only scratched the surface of the mineral wealth yet to be mined with an estimated 61% of the country having been mapped and exploration in nickel, uranium, coal, geothermal, oil and gas still ongoing. Government policy is tailored to the promotion of value addition to minerals such as copper through the introduction of incentives such as a preferential corporate tax rate of 15% for companies that add value to copper cathodes, compared to the standard 35% for other non-incentivized firms.

AGRICULTURE


Image 3: Palm Oil Plantation in Zambia’s Muchinga Province

Agriculture plays an important role in Zambia’s economy, contributing about 13% to the country’s GDP. Zambia is endowed with a vast arable land resource base of 42 million hectares of arable land, of which only 1.5 million hectares is cultivated every year. It has abundant water resources for irrigation, which account for 40% of the water resources in the SADC region. Given this vast resource endowment, Zambia has huge potential to expand its agricultural production. Its climate is that of a tropical savannah, experiencing rainy seasons between the months of November and April. The dry season is characterized by low humidity between the months of May and November. The average temperature in the summer is 36°C and gets as low as 5°C in the winter, which suitable for both traditional and winter crops.

Despite the availability of vast arable land, transport infrastructure, large water resources and affordable labour – the agricultural sector employs more than half of the total labour force – only 10% of arable land is under cultivation. In that regard, the Government has established farming blocks to facilitate investment in agriculture. 100,000 hectares of land has been set aside in each province to make a total of 1 million hectares countrywide for the establishment of the farming blocks.

Zambia’s traditional crops include maize, cassava, wheat, sorghum, rice, sunflowers, groundnuts, soya beans, mixed beans, Irish potatoes, sweet potatoes, and tobacco. A lucrative cashew nut sub sector in has also been built in the western part of the country.

The Government is currently driving the enhancement of value addition by promoting agro-processing through programmes such as the Zambia Agri-business and Trade Project (ZATP). Agro-processing opportunities in Zambia are in peanut butter production, cashew nut processing, animal or stock feed production, cassava processing, grain milling, edible oil production, fruit canning, juice extraction, meat, dairy and leather production, fish canning, textiles, bio-diesel production, and honey processing.

MANUFACTURING

Zambia has a well-developed market economy. Its strong economic performance over the years is testimony to the nation’s open, outward-oriented development strategy. Like most global economies, Zambia’s was not spared from the negative effects of the COVID -19 global pandemic and other external shocks such as volatile commodity prices emanating from disruptions in global supply chains. However, GDP rebounded to positive figures yielding 4.7% growth in 2022.

Currently, the main manufacturing activities in Zambia are in the following industries:

1) Food and beverages;

2) Textile and leather industries;

3) Wood and wood products;

4) Paper and paper products

5) Chemicals, rubber and plastic products

6) Non-metallic mineral products;

7) Basic metal products; and

8) Fabricated metal products.

The top destinations for Zambian exports are China ($2.14bn), India ($719m), South Africa ($486m), United Arab Emirates ($392m), and Belgium-Luxemburg ($297m). Other significant markets outside Africa include Netherlands and Switzerland as well as Europe and North America through the EBA Initiative and AGOA respectively.

Zambia has traditionally been an importer of finished manufactured commodities and an exporter of primary commodities. This points to a deficit of manufactured products within the Country, thereby highlighting opportunities for investment in sub-sectors such as:

  • • Agro-processing;
  • • Pharmaceutical products;
  • • Assembly of machinery and equipment;
  • • Cement;
  • • Packaging materials;
  • • Fertilizers;
  • • Textiles; and
  • • Tobacco products, to mention a few.

TOURISM

The tourism industry has grown steadily over the years, with the establishment of hotels in the major tourist centres such as Livingstone and Lusaka. There is vast unexploited potential in the sector in Zambia due to its natural beauty, including its wealth of wildlife and the Victoria Falls, which is one of the most renowned Seven Natural Wonders of the World. The country boasts over twenty awe inspiring waterfalls that make Zambia a hub of waterfalls and a must for adventure enthusiasts; waterfalls which include Kalambo, Ngonye, Chishimba, Chipempe, Ntumbachushi, Kabwelume, Mumbuluma, Lumangwe, Chipoma, Kundalila, and Ngonye, amongst others.

Zambia has 20 national parks and 34 game management areas, with a total of 23 million hectares of land set aside for wildlife conservation. Also, the country has numerous museums that house priceless historical artifacts such as the Lusaka National Museum, Moto-Moto Museum, and Livingstone Museum. Another attraction is the traditional ceremonies that take place at different times of the year where the country’s rich cultural heritage is displayed. Lastly, the beautiful scenery and abundant wildlife have led to the growth of a tourism sub-sector in the film industry. Concessions are provided to movie production companies for shooting films or documentaries.


Image 4: Thrilling activities in Livingstone

In order to support the tourism sector, Government has continued to build supporting infrastructure such as roads, railways, and bridges, and to facilitate the expansion of the service industry. Since this is a priority sector, investment attracts both fiscal and non-fiscal incentives. Therefore, the bulk of investment opportunities in the sector are in services offered to tourists such as accommodation, restaurants, entertainment facilities, sports facilities, and safaris/game watching, to mention a few.

Zambia is also positioned as a hub for Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) and has in the recent past been an attractive destination hosting global dignitaries and celebrities as well as regional and global events and festivals.

ENERGY

Of the installed 2,898MW electricity generation capacity of Zambia, hydro power is the most important energy source with 2,398MW (83%), followed by diesel and coal. Zambia has about 6,000MW of unexploited hydro power potential due to its abundant water resources, providing an opportunity for investment in hydro power generation. The demand for electricity has been growing at an average rate of 4% per annum, mainly due to economic activity overall but particularly in the agriculture, manufacturing, and mining sectors. The country’s growing population has also led to an increase in the demand for other sources of energy such as petroleum and solar energy for transportation and domestic use, especially in rural areas. The state-owned Zambia Electricity Supply Cooperation (ZESCO) Ltd is the only entity that generates and transmits power, while companies such as the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) procuring power from ZESCO to sell to the mines.

In addition to water resources, Zambia has abundant renewable and non-renewable resources including:

1) Industrial minerals such as coal;

2) Agricultural land to support bio-fuels;

3) Ample forests for bio-mass;

 4) Abundant wind;

5) Sunlight for solar power;

6) Abundant hot springs for geothermal energy; and

7) Uranium for nuclear power

There are currently massive exploration missions being undertaken in Northern and Luapula Provinces to ascertain Zambia’s potential for oil and gas drilling. Investment in this sector attracts fiscal and non-fiscal incentives espoused in the ZDA Act.


Image 5: The 54MWB Bangweulu solar power plant located in Lusaka South Multi-Facility Economic Zone

Some of Zambia’s profiled investment projects can be found here:

https://investment.unido.org/ACP/projects?Country=82


Prepared by:
High Commission of the Republic of Zambia in Kuala Lumpur
info@zhckl.com.my

2023 August Issue

‣ President’s Statement

‣ Editorial

‣ Country Feature: Republic of Zambia

‣ Diary of Events

‣ 3 May 2023
Meeting with the High Commission of the Republic of Zambia

‣ 1 June 2023
Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) Seminar on Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh

‣ 2 June 2023
Meeting between Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) and MASSA

‣ 14 June 2023
Online Discussion on “Enhancing Bangladesh-Malaysia Business Relations” on 14 June and 17 July 2023 jointly hosted by Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI), Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia (DPMM) and MASSA

‣ 15 June 2023
Meeting with International Cooperation and Development Division (ICADD) at Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Wisma Putra)

‣ 28 June 2023
32nd Annual General Meeting of MASSA
[
Read here: MASSA Annual Report 2022-2023]

‣ 3 August 2023
Discussion on the Business Opportunities in Timor Leste

‣ Forthcoming Events

Diary of Events (August 2023 Issue)

1) Meeting with the High Commission of the Republic of Zambia on 3 May 2023


Mr Titus Mumba, Counsellor – Economic and Mr Sakalima Yoyo, First Secretary Economic of the High Commission of the Republic of Zambia met with Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary and Mr Samuel Loh, Programme Executive of MASSA on 3 May 2023 at MASSA’s Office.

The meeting reconnected MASSA with the High Commission of Zambia, and shared on MASSA’s events and activities, and areas where MASSA and the High Commission could collaborate to revitalize the bilateral trade, business and investment insights and opportunities between our two countries.

 


From left-to-right
:

Mr Samuel Loh, Programme Executive, MASSA, Mr Titus Mumba, Counsellor – Economic, High Commission of the Republic of Zambia, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA and Mr Sakalima Yoyo, First Secretary Economic, High Commission of the Republic of Zambia.


2) Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) Seminar on Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh on 1 June 2023 at Royale Chulan Kuala Lumpur


MASSA was invited by the Bangladesh – Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) to attend and participate in a Seminar titled “Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh” on 1 June 2023 at Royale Chulan Kuala Lumpur.

H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh graced the Seminar as the Chief Guest and Mr Mohammad Khorshed A Khastagir, Acting High Commissioner of the Bangladesh High Commission in Kuala Lumpur was preset as a Guest of Honour. MASSA was represented by Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary.

The Seminar was organised with the aim to present to members of the Malaysian business community the Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh, and to announce the 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 organised by BMCCI at Pan Pacific Sonargaon, Dhaka, Bangladesh from 31 August – 2 September 2023.

More than 80 participants comprising Bangladeshi and Malaysian business community and government representatives were in attendance at the seminar.

The discussions highlighted the dynamic and vibrant Bangladeshi economy, and the nation’s move from Digital towards Smart Bangladesh, highlighting the increasing adoption of digital technologies along with a growing digital-ready workforce.

Bangladesh recorded a GDP growth rate of 6.5 – 7 % per annum over the past 10 years, and has the 8th largest population on the planet with over 165 million people, 68.4% who are working age, with a middle class surging from 19 million in 2020 to 34 million projected in 2025.


The programme for the Seminar was as follows:

Time Item
9.30 am Registration & Networking Refreshment
10.15 am Participants and Guests take their seats
10.30 am Welcome Remarks by Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI)
10.35 am Welcome Address by Mr Norsyahrin Hamidon, President, Malay Chamber of Commerce and Industry Malaysia (DPMM)
10.40 am Keynote Paper on “Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh” presented by Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI)

Panelists:

1.       Mr Idzham Abdul Hamid, Director, Central, West, South Asia & Africa Section, Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE)

2.       Mr Md Akther Parvez Chowdhury, Honorary Consul of Malaysia High Commission to Bangladesh (Chittagong) & Managing Director of PHP Automobile Limited

3.       Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA)

Moderator: Mr Syed Moinuddin Ahmed, Treasurer, BMCCI

11.15 am Presentation on the 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 by Mr Syed A Habib, Chairman, Organising Committee for 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 & Director, BMCCI
12.00 am Address by Guest of Honour: Mr Mohammad Khorshed A Khastagir, Acting High Commissioner, Bangladesh High Commission Kuala Lumpur

Address by Chief Guest: H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh

12.30 pm Networking Lunch
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Arrival of the Chief Guest: H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh

(from left-to-right)
Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI, H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh and Mr Pranab Kumar Ghosh, First Secretary (Commercial), High Commission of Bangladesh to Malaysia.

(from left-to-right)
H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Mr Pranab Kumar Ghosh, First Secretary (Commercial), High Commission of Bangladesh to Malaysia, Mr Syed Almas Kabir (back-turned), President, BMCCI, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA) and Mr Md Akther Parvez Chowdhury, Honorary Consul of Malaysia High Commission to Bangladesh (Chittagong) & Managing Director of PHP Automobile Limited.

A group photo of the role-players.
(from left-to-right) Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA, Mr Idzham Abdul Hamid, Director, Central, West, South Asia & Africa Section, MATRADE, Mr Md Akther Parvez Chowdhury, Honorary Consul of Malaysia High Commission to Bangladesh (Chittagong) & Managing Director of PHP Automobile Limited, Mr Mohammad Khorshed A Khastagir, Acting High Commissioner, Bangladesh High Commission Kuala Lumpur, H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI, Mr Norsyahrin Hamidon, President, DPMM, Mr Syed Moinuddin Ahmed, Treasurer, BMCCI and Mr Syed A Habib, Chairman, Organising Committee for 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 & Director, BMCCI.


Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI delivered the Welcome Remarks.

 

Mr Norsyahrin Hamidon, President, DPMM delivered the Welcome Address.

 
Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI presented a Keynote Paper titled “Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh”.


 
 The session then proceeded to a panel discussion on the Keynote Paper.
 
 
(from left-to-right)
Mr Syed Moinuddin Ahmed, Treasurer, BMCCI, Mr Idzham Abdul Hamid, Director, Central, West, South Asia & Africa Section, MATRADE, Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI, Mr Md Akther Parvez Chowdhury, Honorary Consul of Malaysia High Commission to Bangladesh (Chittagong) & Managing Director of PHP Automobile Limited and Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA)
Following that, Mr Syed A Habib (pic below, right), Chairman, Organising Committee for 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 & Director, BMCCI delivered a presentation on the 6th Showcase Malaysia.


Guest of Honour, Mr Mohammad Khorshed A Khastagir, Acting High Commissioner, Bangladesh High Commission Kuala Lumpur delivered his address.
Chief Guest, H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, delivered his address.


Presentation of Token of Appreciation by Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI

Mr Mohammad Khorshed A Khastagir (left), Acting High Commissioner, Bangladesh High Commission Kuala Lumpur

Ms Ng Su Fun (right), Executive Secretary, MASSA

(from left-to-right)
Mr Syed Moinuddin Ahmed
, Treasurer, BMCCI, H.E. Imran Ahmad, M.P., Minister of the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI and Mr Syed A Habib, Chairman, Organising Committee for 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 & Director, BMCCI

A group photo of the role players.

 


PHOTO GALLERY


MASSA wish to thank the Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) for inviting MASSA to participate at the Seminar.


3) Meeting between Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) and MASSA on 2 June 2023


The Bangladesh-Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI) delegation led by its President, Mr Syed Almas Kabir paid a Courtesy Call on MASSA at its office on 2 June 2023.

The meeting discussed the BMCCI Business Delegation to Malaysia’s engagements with the Malaysian Government and its agencies and the local business community, and the organisation of the 6th Showcase Malaysia 2023 at Pan Pacific Sonargaon in Dhaka, Bangladesh on 31 August – 2 September 2023 wherein BMCCI sought MASSA’s support as a supporting organiser.

(from left-to-right)
Mr Samuel Loh, Programme Executive, MASSA, Mr Hasanur Rahman Chowdhury, Executive Secretary, BMCCI, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA, Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI, Mr Mahbub Alam Shah, Director and Mr Moon Mondal Rajib, Member, BMCCI


4) Online Discussion on “Enhancing Bangladesh-Malaysia Business Relations” on 14 June 2023 and 17 July 2023 jointly hosted by Bangladesh Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI), Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia (DPMM), and Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA)


A series of Online Discussions with theme of “Enhancing Bangladesh-Malaysia Business Relations” were jointly hosted by Bangladesh Malaysia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI), Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia (DPMM), and Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA) on Wednesday, 14 June 2023 and 17 July 2023.

The objective of the discussions were to highlight to participants the latest opportunities in Bangladesh for Malaysian businesses, and to raise awareness about Showcase Malaysia, and to build stronger linkages between the Malaysian and Bangladeshi stakeholders.

BMCCI President, Syed Almas Kabir presided over the meeting, and Ms. Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary of MASSA moderated the program. Designated participants from different esteemed Malaysian organizations including Malaysian High Commission in Bangladesh, MATRADE, The Electrical and Electronics Association of Malaysia (TEEAM), the Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Owners Association (PRESMA), the Malaysian Timber Industry Board (MTIB), the International Women Entrepreneurs of Malaysia (IWEM), Motorcycle & Scooter Assemblers and Distributors Association Of Malaysia (MASAAM), the National Tech Association of Malaysia (PIKOM) and companies from various industry sectors were present at the meeting.

BMCCI President Syed Almas Kabir welcomed the participants and gave a presentation on “Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh”. He shared the success story of Bangladesh after its emergence and the viable investment environment of Bangladesh. After the presentation, Secretary General of BMCCI, Mr. Md. Motaher Hoshan Khan presented details on “6th Showcase Malaysia 2023”. He cordially invited all the leaders to join the Showcase and informed them how this exhibition can facilitate Malaysians to expand their business linkages in Bangladesh and with Bangladeshi partners. Treasurer of BMCCI and Member of the Showcase Organizing Committee Syed Moinuddin Ahmed was also present at the discussion.

Malaysian High Commissioner in Bangladesh, H.E. Haznah Md. Hashim was invited to address the meeting. Her Excellency remarked on the success of Malaysian investments in Bangladesh to date. H.E. Haznah Md. Hashim urged all to join the “6th Showcase Malaysia 2023” and called for the participation of the Malaysian business community to explore the burgeoning Bangladesh economy. Her Excellency also encouraged the deepening of the relationship between the two brotherly nations.

The meeting then proceeded to an open discussion and Q&A session. Syed Almas Kabir and Md. Motaher Hoshan Khan took the floor to respond to the inquiries and comments from the Malaysian participants on the subject matter. The Malaysian participants expressed their interest to join the exhibition and during the discussion, they learned more about the market potential of their respective products and/or services in Bangladesh. The participants were also given information on the various opportunities and incentives offered by the Government for investment in Bangladesh.

The 6th edition of Showcase Malaysia will be held from August 31 to September 2, 2023, at Pan Pacific Sonargaon, Dhaka, Bangladesh, and will showcase Malaysian products and services across various sectors.

Presentation on the Trade and Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh delivered by Mr Syed Almas Kabir, President, BMCCI.

Presentation on the 6th Showcase Malaysia by Mr Md Motaher Hoshan Khan, Secretary General BMCCI.

Group photo of the participants of this meeting:


5) Meeting with International Cooperation and Development Division (ICADD) at Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Wisma Putra) on 15 June 2023


MASSA met with Mr Devrin Jeck, the current Ministry of Foreign Affairs ex-officio to MASSA and the new Undersecretary of the International Cooperation and Development Division (ICADD) under the Department of Multilateral Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Wisma Putra) on 15 June 2023.

MASSA was represented by Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, Mr Samuel Loh, Programme Executive and Ms Nur Syuhaida. Joining the meeting was Mr Mogen Selvaraja, Assistant Secretary of ICADD.

The meeting was organised with the aim to introduce MASSA to Mr Devrin Jeck who assumed office as the new ex-officio to MASSA, and to learn about the latest initiatives, plans and developments under ICADD. The meeting discussed how MASSA can complement the ICADD and the Ministry’s initiatives in South-South business promotion, development and cooperation. The meeting also discussed the Malaysian Technical Cooperation Programme (MTCP) under ICADD.

From left-to-right:
Mr Samuel Loh, Programme Executive, MASSA, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA, Mr Devrin Jeck, Undersecretary, ICADD, Department of Multilateral Affairs, Wisma Putra, Mr Mogen Selvaraja, Assistant Secretary, Department of Multilateral Affairs, Wisma Putra and Ms Nur Syuhaida, Secretariat, MASSA.


6) 32nd Annual General Meeting of MASSA on 28 June 2023


Tan Sri Azman Hashim (pic below), President of MASSA convened the Thirty-Second (32nd) Annual General Meeting (AGM) of MASSA at the Boardroom, 26th Floor, Bangunan Ambank Group, Jalan Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur on 28 June 2023.

Tan Sri Azman Hashim delivered his address and the meeting proceeded to unanimously adopt the Annual Report and the audited accounts of the Association for the year ended 31st December 2022. You can read the MASSA Annual Report 2022 – 2023 here: http://www.massa.net.my/massa-2022-2023-annual-report/. The President thanked the Executive Committee and Office Bearers for their continuing support and MASSA members for their participation in MASSA events and activities.
 

The following were elected to the Executive Committee of MASSA for the new term 2023 – 2025:

Office Bearers:

President: YBhg Tan Sri Azman Hashim

Vice-President (i): YABhg Tun Michael Chen Wing Sum

Vice-President (ii): YBhg Datuk Lee Teck Yuen

Honorary Secretary: YBhg Dato’ Lawrence Lim Swee Lin

Honorary Treasurer: YBhg Tan Sri Datuk Tee Hock Seng, JP

Honorary Assistant Secretary: YBhg Datuk Merlyn Kasimir

Executive Committee Members:

– YBhg Dato’ Tan Kia Loke

– YBhg Dato’ J Jegathesan

– YBhg Dato’ Ahmad Fuaad bin Mohd Kenali

– YBhg Tan Sri Dato’ Soong Siew Hoong

– Mr Alagasan Gadigaselam

– Mr Arshad Ismail

– Mr Lee Chun Fai

– Mr Chang Yii Tan


 
Tan Sri Azman Hashim, Chairman, thanked outgoing Office Bearers and Executive Committee Members for their service, and congratulated the newly-elected Office Bearers and Executive Committee members on their appointment.
PHOTO GALLERY:
 
 

7) Discussion on the Business Opportunities in Timor Leste on 3 August 2023


The International Cooperation and Development Division (ICADD) under the Department of Multilateral Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Wisma Putra) invited MASSA to an online discussion between ICADD and the Embassy of Malaysia in Timor Leste on the business opportunities in Timor Leste.

The discussants present included H.E. Amarjit Sarjit Singh, Ambassador of Malaysia to Timor Leste and Mr Devrin Jeck, Undersecretary, ICADD, Department of Multilateral Affairs, Wisma Putra.

MASSA was represented by Datuk Merlyn Kasimir, Hon. Assistant Secretary who was joined by the MASSA Secretariat comprising Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, Mr Samuel Loh, Programme Executive and Ms Nur Syuhaida.

The discussion highlighted that the country is now under the leadership of Mr Xanana Gusmão as the new Prime Minister following recent elections. The meeting highlighted some areas of opportunity, which included tourism, agrobusiness and infrastructure. There is a big need for skills and talent development.

Towards this end, ICADD will be working closely with our Malaysian Embassy in Timor Leste to highlight the areas that can assist Timor Leste under the MTCP.

From left-to-right, clockwise:
Mr Devrin Jeck, Undersecretary, ICADD, Department of Multilateral Affairs, Wisma Putra, H.E. Amarjit Sarjit Singh, Ambassador of Malaysia to Timor Leste, Datuk Merlyn Kasimir, Hon. Assistant Secretary, MASSA, MASSA Secretariat, Mr Dili, Embassy of Malaysia in Timor Leste.

MASSA 2022 – 2023 Annual Report

The MASSA 2022 – 2023 Annual Report can be read here:

2023 April Issue

‣ President’s Statement

‣ Editorial

‣ Country Feature: Republic of Tajikistan

Malaysia and Central Asia – A Cursory Glance at Cooperation and Interaction

– Country Feature: Republic of Tajikistan

‣ Diary of Events (December 2022 – March 2023)

‣ 20 December 2022
Courtesy Call from MIDA Domestic Investment Division on MASSA

‣ 21 December 2022
Meeting with the Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology & Innovation (MRANTI)

‣ 21 February 2023
MASSA Visit to the Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology & Innovation (MRANTI)

‣ 23 February 2023
Courtesy Call from H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri, Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan to Malaysia, the Republic of Indonesia and the Kingdom of Thailand on MASSA President, Tan Sri Azman Hashim

‣ 14 March 2023
MASSA-EXIM Bank Business Briefing & Networking Session with Central Asia

‣ Forthcoming Events

FORTHCOMING EVENTS

MASSA Forthcoming Events


a. 7 March 2024 — SHRDC-MAJECA-MASSA Webinar: Smart Factory and Industry 4.0: A Practical and Sustainable Approach towards Digital Transformation

For more information, please contact the MASSA Secretariat at
mail@massa.net.my / massamssc@gmail.com

Read the latest edition of the MASSA e-Newsletter by clicking HERE


7 March 2024: SHRDC-MAJECA-MASSA Webinar: Smart Factory and Industry 4.0: Practical and Sustainable Approach towards Digital Transformation


In keeping with the series of engagements with Selangor Human Resource Development Centre (SHRDC), MAJECA together with the Malaysia South-South Association (MASSA), is pleased to invite you to our next Webinar on Smart Factory and Industry 4.0. Details of the Webinar are as follows:

  • Date / Day: 7 March 2024, Thursday
  • Time: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm (MYT)
  • Format: Zoom Webinar
  • Registration: https://rb.gy/v08o9m
    *Closing date: 1 March 2024, Friday

Smart Factory takes current manufacturing processes to Industry 4.0 standards. Highly effective and efficient machines are capable of data generation, visualization, and analytics. The integration and collaboration-based concept provides a holistic approach towards integration of technologies related to Industry 4.0 and beyond in a manufacturing process.

This webinar session would provide an overview of these concepts and a unique perspective towards the implementation of Industry 4.0 technologies towards a Smart Factory. Ts. Dr. Chua Wen Shyan, in this Webinar, will share a practical and sustainable approach towards accelerating adoption of digital transformation within organizations. The approach and concepts shared are tailored towards supporting the industries (especially the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)) to accelerate their growth towards highly effective, efficient, impactful, and sustainable digital transformation.

Diary of Events (April 2023 Issue)

1) Courtesy Call from MIDA Domestic Investment Division on MASSA 20 December 2022


The Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA)’s Domestic Investment Division paid a Courtesy Call on MASSA to introduce and discuss MIDA’s recently-mandated role to facilitate Cross Border Investments (CBI).

MIDA’s Domestic Investment Division was represented by Mr Sukri Abu Bakar, Director, Ms Mimi Izura Mohamed Iqbal, Senior Deputy Director and Ms Nazlizan Abdullah, Senior Assistant Director. MASSA was represented by Ms Ng Su Fun who was joined by Mr Samuel Loh and Ms Nur Syuhaida.

The meeting discussed potential areas of collaboration between MIDA and MASSA pertaining to CBI activities to and with the South-South (developing) countries.

From left-to-right:
Ms Nur Syuhaida, Secretariat, MASSA, Mr Samuel Loh, Programme Executive, MASSA, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA, Mr Sukri Abu Bakar, Director, Domestic Direct Investment Division, MIDA, Ms Mimi Izura Mohamed Iqbal, Senior Deputy Director, Domestic Investment Division, MIDA and Ms Nazlizan Abdullah, Senior Assistant Director, Domestic Investment Division, MIDA.


2) Meeting with MRANTI on 21 December 2022


The Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology & Innovation (MRANTI) met with MASSA to discuss areas for collaboration in 2023.

Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA met with Mr Rajen Doiraraj, Senior Manager, Partnership Development, MRANTI at MASSA’s Office on 21 December 2022.

The meeting discussed MRANTI’s activities and areas where MASSA and its members can be involved in to participate and engage with to learn about the importance of innovation, MRANTI’s role in as a digital transformation accelerator and building a startup ecosystem in Malaysia. One of the outcomes of the meeting, was a plan to organise a visit to MRANTI Park to see its facilities, which include, amongst others a visit to its MakersLab and 5G Lab.

From left-to-right:
Mr Rajen Doiraraj, Senior Manager, Partnership Development, MRANTI and Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA


3) MASSA Visit to the Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology & Innovation (MRANTI) on 21 February 2023


MASSA led a delegation of its members, and the business community to a visit to the Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology & Innovation (MRANTI) on 21 February 2023. The delegation, led by Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA comprised the Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan to Malaysia, the Republic of Indonesia and the Kingdom of Thailand, H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri, Mr Sharipov Parviz, Counsel, Embassy of the Republic of Tajikistan, the Second Secretary of the Embassy of the Russian Federation, Mr Zamkovyy Vadim and 40 other participants from the membership of MASSA, government agencies, academia, thinktanks, business councils / chambers and the business community.

MRANTI is Malaysia’s central research & innovation commercialisation agency. Its purpose is to accelerate commercialisation of technology by nurturing strong partnerships and strategic collaborations between the industries and academia. This Visit was organised with the aim to introduce, highlight and showcase MRANTI and MRANTI Park, and the role MRANTI plays in inculcating a culture of innovation.

A group photo of the participants of the Visit. (front-most row, from left-to-right)

Mr. Fikri Ashraf, Senior Executive, Partnership Development, MRANTI, H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri, Ambassador, Embassy of the Republic of Tajikistan, Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA and Mr Zamkovyy Vadim, Second Secretary, Embassy of the Russian Federation.


 

Mr Yusnee Rahmat Yusof, General Manager Enterprise Development, MRANTI delivered the Welcome Speech.

Ms Ng Su Fun, Executive Secretary, MASSA delivered the Opening Speech.

Mr Fikri Ashraf, Senior Executive, Partnership Development, MRANTI delivered a Presentation introducing MRANTI, its aims, mission and role to encourage Research, Development, Commercialisation and Innovation in Malaysia.


Two of MRANTI’s tenant companies were then invited to share their business experiences and, on the support, and assistance provided by MRANTI in developing their business.

Ts. Tharmaindran G, CEO at Bnetworks, IoT Consultant for Property Technology

Mr Daniel Liew Chee Kin, Co-Founder, Sophic MSC


Following that, the participants were brought to visit MRANTI’s MakersLab, a prototyping space equipped with technology, tools and facilitators for guidance and assistance.

The Visit ended with a Networking Luncheon hosted by MRANTI.

Photo Gallery:


MASSA extends its appreciation to the Malaysian Research Accelerator for Commercialisation and Innovation (MRANTI) for hosting the MASSA delegation’s visit to its premises.


4) Courtesy Call from H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri, Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan to Malaysia, the Republic of Indonesia and the Kingdom of Thailand on MASSA President, Tan Sri Azman Hashim on 23 February 2023


The Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan to Malaysia, the Republic of Indonesia and the Kingdom of Thailand, H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri paid a Courtesy Call on Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President of MASSA on 23 February 2023. The Ambassador was accompanied by Mr Sharipov Parviz, Consul.

 

Tan Sri Azman Hashim (left), President, MASSA and H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri (right), Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan to Malayisa


Exchange of Gifts

 


The meeting exchanged insights and shared the business opportunities in the Republic of Tajikistan, and highlighted the economic potential and strategic advantages the nation has.


5) MASSA – EXIM Bank Business Briefing & Networking Session with Central Asia 14 March 2023 at Main Hall, EXIM Bank


The Export – Import Bank of Malaysia Berhad (EXIM Bank) hosted a Business Briefing and Networking Luncheon with Central Asia in collaboration with MASSA on 14 March 2023. Central Asia, comprising Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan. The event saw 60 participants comprising members of MASSA, EXIM Bank’s clientele, government agencies, thinktanks and the business community in attendance.

 

Recognizing the synergy between the two organisations (MASSA and EXIM Bank) towards promoting and enhancing Malaysia and South-South business linkages, and building on the momentum of the previous year, which celebrated 30 Years of Central Asia – Malaysia Diplomatic Relations, the event was timely as our nations, and the global economy re-open, resume and return in line with the waning of the pandemic.

This session was organised with the aim to feature the Central Asian nations coupled with EXIM Bank’s expertise and knowledge and MASSA’s services as a business association to bring together members, clients, and stakeholders to reconnect with the view towards revitalizing business connections and form trade linkages between Malaysia and Central Asia.

From left to right:

Mr Atai Namatbaev, Charge d’ Affaires, Embassy of the Kyrgyz Republic,

H.E. Bulat Sugurbayev, Ambassador of the Republic of Kazakhstan,

H.E. Ravshan Usmanov, Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan,

En Arshad bin Ismail, President & CEO, EXIM Bank,

H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri, Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan,

H.E. Muhammetnyyaz Mashalov, Ambassador of Turkmenistan and

YBhg Datuk Merlyn Kasimir, Executive Committee Member, MASSA.

The programme was as follows:

En Arshad bin Ismail, President & CEO, EXIM Bank delivered the Welcome Remarks.

YBhg Datuk Merlyn Kasimir, Executive Committee Member, MASSA delivered the Opening Remarks of YBhg Tan Sri Azman Hashim, President, MASSA.

Pn Zabedah Giw, Acting Chief Strategy Officer, EXIM Bank delivered a Presentation on the Central Asia Market Outlook, Opportunities & Challenges in 2023.

The session then adjourned for a coffee break before resuming with presentations by the representatives from Central Asia.

H.E. Ravshan Usmanov, Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

H.E. Ardasher S. Qodiri, Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan.

Mr Atai Namatbaev, Charge d’ Affaires, Embassy of the Kyrgyz Republic.

H.E. Bulat Sugurbayev, Ambassador of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Representatives from EXIM Bank then delivered presentations on the Bank’s services and offerings.

Pn Nurbayu Kasim Chang, Chief Business Officer delivered a Presentation titled ‘EXIM Bank’s Financial Offerings for Malaysian Companies: The Value Proposition’

Mr Khoo Kah Jin, Head of Insrance / Takaful delivered a Presentation titled ‘Secure Trading with EXIM Bank’s Trade Credit Insurance & Takaful Proposition: Why Must Your International Business Have It?’.

Token of Appreciation

Tokens of Appreciations by EXIM Bank were presented to the representatives of the Central Asian Embassies and YBhg Datuk Merlyn Kasimir (pic below, right) by En Arshad bin Ismail (pic below, left), President & CEO of EXIM Bank.

 

The business briefing then adjourned to a networking luncheon hosted by EXIM Bank.

Photo Gallery:

MASSA extends its appreciation to the Export – Import Bank of Malaysia Berhad (EXIM Bank) for hosting the event, and to the Central Asian Embassies for their kind cooperation and participation at this event.