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Malaysia – Industrial Policy

The National 4IR Policy serves as a national framework to align the government’s policy responses in unlocking the potential socioeconomic benefits and managing the risks arising from the 4IR. The National 4IR Policy takes into account resource optimisation and implementation coordination of other related policies.

Examples of new initiatives in four focus areas under the National 4IR Policy, are namely human capital, infrastructure, regulations and innovation. This highlights enhancements of existing initiatives as well as other key features unique to the National 4IR Policy. These initiatives are introduced to gear up the country for technological and digital advancement.

The National 4IR Policy also highlights 10 focus sectors to leverage 4IR technologies to uplift productivity, and five foundational technologies that the country needs in building local capabilities to support the deployment of other 4IR technologies.

The National 4IR Policy is an overarching policy to which other sectors and technology-specific policies are to be aligned to. This would ensure coherent readiness of the nation to embrace this industrial revolution and to elevate Malaysia’s competitiveness amidst technological disruptions.


Malaysia has invested substantial resources to cope with technological changes and laid the foundation for the 4IR through rapid digitalisation. Malaysia faces some issues and challenges in embracing 4IR such as insufficient innovation-led mindset, inadequate 4IR-ready talent and lack of quality basic infrastructure. Moving forward, the country needs a clear governance structure and implementation framework to roll out a whole-of-nation approach to drive the 4IR agenda.

The National 4IR Policy will put Malaysia in a strong competitive position in the coming decades and will continue to improve the economic, social and environmental wellbeing of the nation. The Policy will ensure the country is on a sustainable growth trajectory.


The intended outcomes of the National 4IR Policy by 2030 based on the three policy missions are as follows:

• Enhanced quality of life of the rakyat reflected by the improvement in the MyWI, from 124.4 in 2018 to 136.5 in 2030. This will be achieved by leveraging technological advancement.

• 30% uplift in productivity, across all sectors by 2030, compared to 2020 levels, achieve 3.5% gross expenditure on R&D (GERD) to GDP as well as increase in investment in 4IR-enabling infrastructure and the number of home-grown 4IR technology providers. These will be achieved with the enhancement of local capabilities in embracing the 4IR.

• Improvement in Malaysia’s ranking in Environmental Performance Index from 68 among 180 countries to top 50 in 2030 with the preservation of ecological integrity using 4IR technologies.

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