Malaysiaís economy is growing steadily. The United States is Malaysiaís second
largest importer. Malaysia has a population of approximately 22.2 million people
with more than 36% who are at least 15 years old. These fairly young adults
are likely to be engaged in future businesses. Malaysia also has a high demand
in new technology making new technological developments attractive.
- Electronic products
- New technological developments
- Metal products
- Transport equipment
- Live animals
- Health services
- Retail outlets
- Be sure to conduct a market survey before starting a new business.
- Regular visits by the importing party are important to establish strong
- A local agent or joint venture partnership is required when selling to the
- Direct involvement by the importing party, especially top management, is
recommended for large contracts.
- Establishing a local office is the key to a businessís success.
- Honesty, openness, and reliability are good traits to have when negotiating
- Most businesses operate 7 hours a day Monday Ė Thursday, 6 hours on Fridays,
and half a day on Saturday mornings.
- Majority of Malaysiaís population are Muslims and they donít like alcohol
served during business meetings.
- Malaysianís only do business with people they know and like, so a strong
relationship is important.
- The negotiation process in Malaysia is slower, so you will need to be patient.
- Malaysians prefer businesses that show signs of long-term commitment.
- Be sure to include your education, professional qualifications, and
business title in your business card.
- Always accept otherís business cards with two hands.
- Be sure to remain calm under any circumstances.
- Handshakes are usually 10-12 seconds and you must use both hands.
- Only shake a Malaysian womanís hand if she volunteers first, otherwise
a nod and smile will work.
- Ask to be excused followed by a small bow.
- Do not write on other peopleís business cards.
- On receiving business cards, donít immediately put them away; take
a second to look at them instead.
- Do not smoke or wear sunglasses when talking to elders.
- Do not show anger (this means you have no control and you gain no
respect or trust).
Malaysiaís legal system is based on the British Common Laws. This makes it
easier for U.S companies to establish a business because they are more familiar
with the British Common Laws than any other legal system.