Malaysia takes big step in finance liberalization

By Monday April 27th, 2009 No Comments

PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia_Malaysia says it will let foreigners hold a majority stake in insurance companies and investment banks in a major step toward financial liberalization.

Prime Minister Najib Razak says he is raising the foreign ownership cap in the two types of noncommercial banks from 49 percent at present to 70 percent.

He says the foreign equity cap in commercial banks, however, remains at 30 percent.

Najib told reporters Monday that the liberalization steps will increase Malaysia’s “linkages to the global economy” and spur new growth.

He says the government will also issue nine new licenses for the financial sector. Of these, two will be given to Islamic banks, two for commercial banks and two for Islamic insurance companies in 2009. Three more licenses for commercial banks will be issued in 2011.

Source : AP

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