Penang Economic Indicators


The economic performance of Malaysia and Penang has been strong for past six years, with an average annual growth of 5%. Penang’s gross domestic product (GDP) and GDP per capita were higher than the national figures, which is a good sign.

For 2018, Penang’s economic development is projected to be positive as well. Penang consistently contributes 6% of Malaysia’s GDP, and the figure is increasing.

The services sector has outperformed the manufacturing sector since 2010.


Penang’s trade performance is increasing year by year, although export figures dipped in 2012. Balance of trade for both Malaysia and Penang varies annually.

Penang Labour Statistics

The unemployment rate in Penang has been low compared to Malaysia – under 3% in 2016 and the first quarter of 2017; in the same quarter, about one-third of employed persons received tertiary education, while half of the labor force received education up to the secondary level.

The median income of Penang is higher than Malaysia (Table 8); a similar scenario can be seen from household income (Table 9). In 2014 the median monthly household income in Penang transcended Malaysia’s, and it continues to do so. Therefore, to raise the income of people in Penang is a crucial task in the future.

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