Selangor Journal
Swedish ambassador to Malaysia Joachim Bergstrom speaks with Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow at a cocktail reception in conjunction with the Regional Meeting of Swedish Ambassadors to Asean Countries in George Town, Penang, on May 20, 2024. — Picture by BERNAMA

Malaysia gateway to Asean for Swedish companies, says ambassador

GEORGE TOWN, May 21 — Malaysia serves as the launching pad and gateway for foreign investors in the Asean region including companies from Sweden for businesses, said Swedish ambassador to Malaysia Joachim Bergstrom.

He said Malaysia continues to attract Swedish companies due to its political stability, good standard of living and widespread use of English.

“The ease of doing business in Malaysia ranks very high for Swedish companies. It’s relatively affordable to operate here, and also a launching pad towards other economies in the Asean region, so using Malaysia as a gateway to operate wider is very attractive.

“Penang also is a fantastic place and has an interesting fabric of culture, legacy, food, literacy and very attractive investment area for European industries,” he told reporters after attending the cocktail reception in conjunction with the Regional Meeting of Swedish Ambassadors to Asean Countries here, last night.

Bergstrom noted Penang and Sweeden shared long-standing bilateral ties in various areas, including sustainability, green transition, digitalisation, transportation and manufacturing.

“We have a number of Swedish companies in the region here in Penang and Kulim, Kedah. It is really an area in Malaysia that is attracting more investment and interest from the Swedish industry,” he added.

Meanwhile, Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow hopes to further increase cooperation with Scandinavian countries, especially Sweden, to boost their investments in Malaysia and Southeast Asia.

“I am happy that Penang is able to attract investments from all over the world, including Sweden and the Nordic countries. For the Malaysian government, regardless of whether it is at the national or state level, we have many things to work on, particularly in talent development,” he said.

There are currently over 80 active Swedish companies based in Malaysia, with close to 9,000 employees working with local counterparts to increase access to green energy.

Swedish investments into Malaysia amount to US$500 million (RM2.3 billion), making Malaysia one of the largest receivers of Swedish investment.

— Bernama

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