AMRO says Malaysia on the right path, is positive on prospects

The ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office Ltd (AMRO) is positive on prospects in Malaysia, saying the local economy is on the right fiscal track and is seen as one of the beneficiaries of a global recovery in the oil industry.

“Malaysia is doing alright. It has also benefitted from the recovery in oil prices. The (fiscal) discipline that it shows now also implies that there will be more going forward and this will be good," its chief economist Dr Khor Hoe Ee told reporters at the Asean Roundtable Series titled What Lessons Learned from Financial Crises of Recent Times today.

The roundtable was organised by CIMB Asean Research Institute, in collaboration with the Asean Business Club and the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum.

"The new government is probably recalibrating its policies, which is quite natural. I don’t think there will be a big shift. Overall, we’re very positive of the prospects for Malaysia,” Khor added.

On Asean's readiness to face a potential financial crisis, Khor said emerging markets in the region has learnt from lessons on crisis management and resolution during the 1997 Asian financial crisis, noting they have taken a lot of pre-emptive measures in case of a major shock on the financial market.

“If a crisis were to happen…I’m relatively optimistic that there won’t be any financial crisis for the countries in this region,” he added.

Earlier during the roundtable, Khor noted regional outlook remains challenging, given the tension between short-term growth and financial stability objectives, as it comes at a time when policy space has generally been narrowed.

“In the medium term, it is important to strengthen the regional financial safety net, while accelerating the structural reform agenda for a continuous income convergence in the longer term,” Khor said.