found contents for binary options trading strategy youtube
cysec and eu all set to regulate binary options
utopia binary options trading signals 5 minute trades
brokers for binary option strategy
legitimate binary option broker 4xp
option trading low brokerage
trustfull binary options broker
fx new no deposit binary options
cheapest binary options broker brokers mt4
how to lose money binary options
how to start up a cake baking business from home
forex binary options system review strategy 60
binary options no deposit required kraken
options trading long vs short
binary option on nadex 60 second trades
us based binary options arbitrage
how to trade binary option with no money scalper
best binary option trading broker regulated
list of top online stock trading sites
binary options system 7 torrent results
online share trading account in pakistan
is berlin the new home for tech startup business
binary options alert indicator mt4 broker job
binary option methods robot settings
binary trading research
options trading nz
binary options robot broker fraud
binary options trading meani
online share trading in india reviews
trading options in an ira account
binary option safe scam
odds of binary options legal usa
binary options market review december 13
home based business selling organic products
binary options trading does it work buddy
60 second binary options tips vs vanilla
how to trade in nifty options
binary options marketplace strategies
free forex binary options trading system robot ex4
understanding types of binary options
home baking business nyc
binary options strategy regulated in us
iron condor binary options
internet binary options trading in the us
best time of day to trade 60 second binary options trading vs gambling
fast withdrawal binary options brokers it gambling
how to trade using binary option price
i quit binary options pro signals europe
jeff anderson binary options websites
news on free money for binary options
binary options 100 bonus dealers
difference between binary trading and forex trading
what are binary option broker mt4
option trading germany
long term best investment options in india
binary option trading halal minimum
assaxin 8 binary options jobs london trading system
binary options strategy rsi
home business no start up fees
binary options for beginners episode 10 fundamental analysis
home based business credit cards
binary option 24option autotrader
binary option strategy profitable 60 sec forecasts
binary options auto trader reviews yahoo finance
tips on binary options uk demo
forex binary option demo defined
best online trading websites in india
binary options analysis us stocks rally
trade touch no binary options strategy us
how to win in binary option journey 88
is binary options trading real
binary options what is the catch unmasked
ways to make money online without quitting your day job
binary options economic calendar 500
binary option affiliate programs 100 bonus
best time to trade binary option extreme
home health businesses for sale in il
trade binary options strategies used to formulate an argument uk
binary option ladder multiplier
binary option free robot
best graphs for binary options ea
how to build a trading strategy on the binary options nadex
mock binary options trading ezinearticles
how to win in binary options system us based
how to win in binary option zero sum success
best binary option affiliate programs how to
binary options cboe
do binary option really work 100 free
ig markets best technical indicators for binary options
how to start a home based jewelry making business
ebook binary options trading banking
binary option minimum deposit 50 mt4 templates
expert advisor for binary option apple
licensed binary option trading pdf
binary option platforms trader
books on binary options cheats
best binary option strategy 2015 is it real
digital binary options website reviews
60 second binary option system
list of binary option scams cheats
how to win in binary options trading platform 100 minimum
binary option on gold training
binary options trading algorithms u s based
binary options apple quantum
forex valuing binary options 101
xemarkets binary options strategy 80
ideas to start a home based business
we are looking for partners to make a binary option business nigeria
cboe binary options signal software reviews s p 500
fx pro gt binary options
options trading in india examples review binary brokers london
binary option 300 911
binary options 270 to 22713 in 4 days live account pro signals
giao dch binary options l g la chn s c nhng li th g so vi forex thng thng
binary option demo account in the us gi
binary options software ebay login
tag archives binary options uk tax
secrets to binary options clickbank
binary options warrior forum no deposit bonus 2015
how to do small business in home
binary options trading tutorials youtube
binary options api bullet
winning strategies for binary option cyprus
salestech binary options hack
stock trading online indonesia
binary option game app methods ny
binary option system documentation how it works
most accurate binary options signals software 2014 my cash bot review
deposit binary option tutorial pdf 2015
binary option vs roulette affiliates
free live binary options charting 101 download
000 binary currency trading traders
binary option live signals scam 100 bonus
kc home inventory business opportunity
best investment options in india to save tax
binary option methods engineer job description free bonus
learn options trading video
free binary option trading strategy x
forex binary option trading signals strategies
top 10 regulated binary option broker in usa signals
redwood binary option broker results
make money online for free from home
what do i need to do to start a catering business from home
binary options trading in southafrica
binary options course download italian
1 minute binary options profit in 60 seconds software
best binary options strategies for usa
binary options no deposit bonus june 2013
option trading technical analysis software
the binary option insider system 90
Home Discussion Papers Asia Dimension Tiger in the bush: An overview of Malaysian investment in Africa
Tiger in the bush: An overview of Malaysian investment in Africa
Written by Fiona Dwinger (1) Tuesday, 02 November 2010 08:08

Over the past decade, the Asian emerging economies have consolidated their presence on the African continent through trade, investment, aid and migration. Regarding the continent as a place of enormous potential, the Asian elephants, dragons and tigers have defied the stale Western perception of Africa as a continent plagued by a plethora of problems, and have successfully realised investment opportunities.(2)

The country to have received the most attention - or been regarded with the most suspicion - by policymakers, academics and the media regarding Asia’s involvement in Africa is, of course, the new potential superpower on the horizon - China. Indeed, trade between Africa and China increased 10-fold from 1998 to 2006, and doubled again between 2006 and 2010, making China the largest exporter to Africa. China invested a cumulative total of US$ 2.5 billion in the continent between 2006 and 2008.(3) One should nevertheless consider that Asian foreign direct investment (FDI) in Africa is still dwarfed by that of the developed countries, especially the United Kingdom (UK), United States (US), France and Germany, which contributed 72% of FDI flows to Africa between 2000 and 2008, while Asian countries contributed merely 15.2%.(4)

It is also important to note that the continent’s regional powerhouse - South Africa - ranks first in terms of developing economy investments in Africa, followed by China and then, interestingly, Malaysia. The newly industrialised market economy invested around US$ 600 million in the continent between 2006 and 2008, while India invested merely half of this figure, yet Malaysia seems to attract much less attention than either India or China.(5) This discussion paper aims to provide an overview of Malaysian investments in Africa  - the sectors involved,  the motivation behind these and the implications for the continent.

Sectors targeted by Malaysian investment

Malaysian investment in Africa is widely dispersed both in terms of the countries and the industries targeted.  Much like Chinese investments in Africa, Malaysian firms can be found operating in every sector imaginable from the most valuable and visible (i.e. resource-extraction) to involvement in amusement and recreational activities.(6) Investments in hotels and leisure, real estate, shipping, broadcasting, banking and financial services, palm oil plantations and refining, oil and gas and telecommunications demonstrate the sectoral diversity of Malaysian investments in Africa.(7)

Motivation behind Malaysian investment in Africa

Of the 70% of Malaysian FDI that has been targeted at other developing countries in recent years, around 15% has flown into African projects. Malaysian firms – such as Petronas and Telekom Malaysia - accounted for more than ⅓ of mergers and acquisitions between Asian and African multinational corporations (MNCs) between 1987 and 2005, with the largest recipients having been Mauritius and South Africa.(8) This fact is particularly insightful when one considers that around 25% of the Malaysian population is made up of ethnic Chinese, as it demonstrates that Malaysian multinational corporations (MNCs) utilise their multiple identities and links to the Chinese (and Malay) diaspora in Africa in choosing investment destinations (the 30,000 Chinese living on Mauritius, for example, constitute China’s largest diaspora).(9)

Malaysian investment on the continent is also aided by the strong support of the Malaysian Government. The reasons for this are two-fold. Since the early 1990s, outward FDI flows have been strongly informed by the Government’s emphasis on South-South cooperation and the promotion of mutual benefits. This strategy may be compared to the concept of mutual benefit as understood by the Chinese, which, together with non-interference in the domestic affairs of a country makes up a cornerstone of Chinese strategic economic engagement in Africa.(10)

To demonstrate, Chinese businesses, as well as the Government, tend to receive the bulk of criticism with regards to investments in countries with non-democratic forms of Government. One can consider China’s controversial relationship with Sudan, where China’s demand for oil enables Sudan’s despotic regime to buy Chinese arms, which are then used against the rebels in Darfur. Although Chinese companies are the main investors in Sudan’s oil fields, they are closely followed by Malaysian MNCs such as Petronas – the presence of which enables Malaysia to secure its energy needs. It is also interesting to note here that in 2006, Japan was Sudan’s largest oil purchaser.(11) In 2008, Malaysia also acquired Royal Dutch Shell’s petroleum distribution business in Zimbabwe. Shell sold its stake to South Africa’s largest refined petroleum firm, Engen, which is today 80% owned by Petronas.(12)

The case of Petronas may also be used to illustrate the second reason behind the Malaysian Government’s support for its MNCs’ ventures abroad - to foster the development of ‘world-class Malaysian-owned companies’.(13) The aim is to create companies that are not only the best locally, but also globally. Malaysia International Shipping Corporation (MISC), for example, is the world’s leader in the shipping of liquefied natural gas, owning over 100 vessels which ship everything from woodchips to jet fuel to and for customers worldwide.(14) Petronas is in a similar leading position, with the wholly Government-owned oil and gas company having been ranked Asia’s most profitable company by Fortune 500 in 2008.(15) Petronas operates in 34 countries, with its purchase of a 35% stake in Egyptian LNG in 2003 ranking amongst the top ten cross-border merger and acquisition deals in Africa concluded by developing country MNCs between 1991 and 2009.(16)

Concluding Remarks

This paper describes the sectors and countries in Africa in which Malaysian MNCs have invested and explains the motivations informing these investments. It was demonstrated that the Malaysian Government supports its companies’ investments on the continent for much of the same reasons that Chinese involvement in Africa has grown exponentially over the past decade - the promotion of South-South cooperation, trade and investment; mutual benefit; energy security; realising opportunities for growth and access to untapped markets; as well as the development of world-class enterprises. In a similar fashion, Malaysian investment is spread across a wide variety of sectors and number of countries. 

However, Malaysian involvement in Africa has been the subject of much less academic debate or media attention. Thus, it can be argued that this Asian tiger’s investments on the continent can be construed in a similarly positive or negative light in terms of the opportunities and risks that Asian, and particularly Chinese and Indian investment presents for Africa.


(1) Contact Fiona Dwinger through Consultancy Africa Intelligence's Asia Dimension Unit ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).
(2) Brautigam, D., The Dragon’s Gift. The Real Story of China in Africa, Oxford University Press, United States of America, 2010
(3) ‘World Investment Report 2010’, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), 2010,
(4) N.A., Asian Foreign Direct Investment in Africa. Towards a New Era of Cooperation among Developing Countries. United Nations, Geneva, 2007.
(5) ‘World Investment Report 2010’, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), 2010,
(6) Ibid.
(7) Zainal, A.Y., ‘Outward foreign direct investment by Malaysian enterprises’, UNCTAD, Geneva, 2005
(8) N.A., Asian Foreign Direct Investment in Africa. Towards a New Era of Cooperation among Developing Countries. United Nations, Geneva, 2007.
(9) ‘Questions Remain About Benefits of Chinese SEZ’, Business Monitor International, November 2009.
(10) N.A., Africa-China-U.S. Trilateral Dialogue, Council on Foreign Relations, New York, 2007
(11) Large, D., ‘From Non-Interference to Constructive Engagement? China’s Evolving Relations with Sudan’, in Alden, C. et al. (eds.),  China Returns to Africa. A Rising Power and a Continent Embrace, Columbia University Press, New York, 2008.
(12) N.A., ‘A Survey of Foreign Direct Investment in G-15 Countries’, Summit Level Group of Developing Countries, Group of Fifteen, Working Paper Series, Vol. 7, February 2010.
(13) N.A., Asian Foreign Direct Investment in Africa. Towards a New Era of Cooperation among Developing Countries, United Nations, Geneva, 2007.
(14) Van Agtmael, A., The Emerging Markets Century, Simon & Schuster, London, 2007.
(15) ‘Global 500 – Asia’, Fortune, 2008,
(16) ‘World Investment Report 2010’, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), 2010,


Facebook Twitter Google+ LinkedIn Plaxo