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Malaysia’s economy contracted 5.6 per cent in 2020

Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Performance 2018

Release Date : Wednesday 31, July 2019 1200



Malaysia’s SMEs GDP for year 2018 grew at 6.2 per cent as compared to 7.1 per cent in 2017. This performance exceeded Malaysia’s GDP and Non SMEs which registered 4.7 per cent and 3.8 per cent respectively as shown in Chart 1. The contribution of SMEs GDP to Malaysia’s GDP rose to 38.3 per cent from 37.8 per cent in the previous year. 

Value added of SMEs at constant 2015 prices was RM521.7 billion as compared to RM491.2 billion in 2017. In nominal terms, SMEs GDP recorded RM551.7 billion in 2018 (2017: RM519.1 billion).

SMEs value added for Services sector registered a growth of 8.1 per cent as compared to 7.2 per cent in 2017 as shown in Exhibit 1. The growth momentum was accelerated by Wholesale & retail trade, food & beverages and accommodation sub-sector which grew to 8.6 per cent (2017: 7.5%). The growth of Finance, insurance, real estate and business services sub-sector increased at 7.6 per cent (2017: 7.4%). Meanwhile, Transportation & storage and information & communication sub-sector which expanded to 6.9 per cent (2017: 6.8%) has also supported the growth momentum.

In Manufacturing sector, value added of SMEs grew to 5.5 per cent (2017: 6.8%) led by Petroleum, chemical, rubber and plastic products with a growth of 5.8 per cent (2017: 4.4%). Furthermore, Non-metallic mineral products, basic metal and fabricated metal products expanded to 6.9 per cent from 6.1 per cent in previous year, while Food, beverages and tobacco sub-sector moderated to 3.6 per cent (2017: 11.0%).

The value added of SMEs in Agriculture sector grew marginally 0.3 per cent after registering 6.0 per cent in the preceding year. This was due to the slower performance in Rubber, oil palm, livestock & other agriculture sub-sector with growth of 0.5 per cent (2017: 9.0%).

SMEs in Construction and Mining & quarrying sectors eased to 4.0 per cent and 4.3 per cent respectively.


SMEs activities were dominated by Services sector which contributed 62.4 per cent and Manufacturing sector with a share of 20.1 per cent as depicted in Exhibit 2. The Agriculture sector contributed 10.1 per cent to SMEs GDP followed by the Construction sector which contributed 5.9 per cent.

The structure of SMEs GDP is almost similar to the Malaysia’s GDP structure with the exception of Mining & quarrying sector. In SMEs GDP, Mining & quarrying sector contributed 0.5 per cent towards the total SMEs GDP as compared to Malaysia’s GDP at 7.6 per cent. This was due to structural differences between SMEs and Malaysia’s GDP whereby Other mining and quarrying sub-sector spearheaded the SMEs, while Crude oil & condensate and Natural gas were the major contributors of the Malaysia’s economy.


From the perspective of SMEs GDP contribution by kind of economic activity, all sectors recorded an increased in 2018 except for Construction sector. SMEs GDP was led by the Agriculture sector with a share of 52.8 per cent driven by Fishing subsector as portrayed in Exhibit 3. As for Construction, contribution of SMEs GDP posted 46.4 per cent from 46.6 per cent in the preceding year.

SMEs GDP of Services sector expanded to 42.2 per cent as compared to 41.7 per cent in 2017 which was dominated by Wholesale & retail trade, food & beverage and accommodation sub-sector. Finance, insurance, real estate and business services also bolstered this sector significantly particularly in professional services.

SMEs GDP in Manufacturing sector recorded a marginal increase to 34.4 per cent (2017: 34.2%) attributed by Petroleum, chemical, rubber and plastic products. In additional, SMEs activities were also contributed by Food, beverages and tobacco and Non-metallic mineral products, basic metal and fabricated metal products. Meanwhile, the SMEs GDP in Mining & quarrying sector recorded a share of 2.4 per cent (2017: 2.3%).


Exports of SMEs registered a growth of 3.4 per cent to RM171.9 billion in 2018 as compared to 7.2 per cent in 2017, driven by Manufacturing (5.1%) and Services (2.0%) sectors as portrayed in Chart 2. SMEs exports of Agriculture sector in 2018 was RM2.48 billion (2017: RM2.53 billion), recorded a negative growth of 2.0 per cent. This was due to a decrease of SMEs exports for vegetables, banana, pineapple and other tropical fruits such as watermelon, guava and others.

Meanwhile, exports of SMEs in the Manufacturing sector which contributed 48.3 per cent of total SMEs exports in 2018 was supported by beverages & tobacco, chemicals, manufactured goods and miscellaneous manufactured articles. The main destination for SMEs exports of the Manufacturing sector was Singapore which constituted 18.6 per cent followed by China (8.9%) and the United States (7.8%). SMEs exports of Services sector increased to RM86.4 billion from RM84.7 billion in 2017. This was led by travel, other business services and transport activities.

Share of SMEs exports to total exports remained at 17.3 per cent in 2018 where 8.7 per cent was from the Services sector. Furthermore, Manufacturing sector contributed 8.4 per cent and Agriculture sector 0.2 per cent.


Released By:

 DrUzir_Mahidin    Dr_Uzir

31 July 2019


Contact person:

Rohaida binti Mohamad 
Public Relation Officer
Strategic Communication and International Division
Department of Statistics, Malaysia
Tel : +603-8885 7942
Fax : +603-8888 9248
Email : rohaida.mohamad[at]dosm.gov.my

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