The transition to the endemic phase and the reopening of Malaysia’s borders have clearly provided a positive impact on the national economy compared to the pandemic phase two years ago, Minister in Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said.
“Purchasing power has risen, if we go to any shopping complex, shopping mall, we find people have started to come out to conduct business activities and to make purchases."
Borders have been reopened, the international economy has, to a certain extent, gone up.
“Our economy is recovering, except for external risks, such as the Russia-Ukraine war, which is challenging the world economy, including hikes in the prices of commodities, such as maize and oil, which we have to face,” he told reporters after launching a fire prevention programme in conjunction with Aidilfitri celebrations at Bukit Bunga, here on Saturday (April 16).
Bernama had previously reported that the Malaysian economy was expected to strengthen this year as the country entered the transition to the endemic phase, which commenced with the reopening of the international borders.
The national gross domestic product (GDP) was forecast to expand by 6% this year (as compared to 3.1% in 2021) while the GDP in the first quarter was expected to record a growth of 5% to 6% (2021: -0.5%).
Mustapa, who is also Jeli MP, said the presence of tourists from abroad is expected to go up only in 2025 or 2026.
“The exit-entry movement [of the tourism sector] is still limited. The influx of tourists impacts on the national economy greatly such as shopping, transportation and hotel.
“But, domestic tourism is seen to have gone up, people are travelling domestically and we are confident this will continue,” he said.
On April 1, the government announced the transition to the endemic phase as well as the reopening of the country’s borders.