Issues and Country Experiences
Edited by Jesus Felipe
Chapter 12: Diversification and industrial policies in Malaysia
Since independence in 1957, the economic structure of Malaysia has changed significantly. At that time, Malaysia was a rubber and tin producing economy. Today, it is a vibrant producer and exporter of manufactured goods and services. In 1960, agriculture contributed 60% of gross domestic product (GDP), compared with just 7.3% in 2012 (Leete 2007). Following a similar pattern, the share of agricultural employment in total employment declined continuously over this period, and stood at 11% in 2012. Amid that decline, manufacturing value added has grown steadily, accounting for 25% of GDP in 2012 from just 9% in 1960, while the share of manufacturing employment in total employment was 29% in 2012. Malaysia’s services sector, meanwhile, is now the largest, representing 55% of GDP and 54% of total employment in 2012.
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