The Malaysian economy is on track for 4.5-5 percent expansion this year as domestic demand holds up and exports recover, according to Governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz of Bank Negara, Malaysia ’s central bank.

The country’s latest numbers for exports have turned around to become positive so if that trend continues it will be at the higher end, Zeti said in a recent interview granted to Bloomberg news, adding she expects that next year’s economic growth will be an improvement from 2013.

Malaysia , Southeast Asia ’s third largest economy, posted an average 6 percent growth in the three years through 2012, aided by domestic demand and investment.
As the country now joins Asian emerging markets from Indonesia to China in facing slower growth, Zeti said.

The governor stated that in 2013, global trade slowed down very significantly, and of course, that affected Malaysia because of the openness of the economy. “But had we not rebalanced our economy, we would have had 1 to 2 percent growth,” she added.

According to Zeti, the Malaysian central bank held its benchmark interest rate at 3 percent for 14 consecutive meetings until September 5 to support economic growth. The rate is now considered as a suitable figure to the economic growth of the country.

Zeti said in the next six months, the bank will focus mostly on growth rather than inflation , as global growth will remain subdued. Inflation is stable, she said, as demand is on a steady growth path and Malaysia has significant expansion of capacity.-VNA