Penang, Malaysia » City Info » Economy

The economy of Penang depends on various sectors. Penang takes up the third position after Selangor and Johor among the states of Malaysia. Its excellent infrastructure and transportation facilities make Penang the perfect place for the manufacturing sector. There are a lot of industries in the southern part of the island.

Apart from the manufacturing sector, tourism, finance, agriculture and shipping sectors also contribute to the economy of the state. The Penang Development Corporation, PDC, helps to plan, implement and promote most of the development projects on behalf of the state government of Penang.

When Kuala Lumpur was a small outpost, Penang was the main core of the banking of Malaysia. In 1875, Standard Chartered Bank, the oldest bank in Malaysia, opened its doors to gratify the financial requirements of the early European traders. In 1885, HSBC (The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation) opened its branch in Penang. Later in 1888, the UK-based Royal Bank of Scotland opened its first office in the state. Today, Penang is home to Citibank, the Malaysian central bank (Bank Negara Malaysia), United Overseas Bank, Maybank, Ambank, Public Bank and CIMB Bank.

The agriculture sector contributes very little to Penang Island's economy. The major exported crops are cocoa, oil palm, rubber crops, fruits, vegetables, livestock, coconut, and paddy. Apart from this, ornamental, fisheries, floriculture and aquaculture are some of the new emerging industries that play a small role in bringing up the economy.