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Malaysia trails Indonesia in attracting foreign direct investment

Experts say reforms, political stability are essential for country to narrow gap

Malaysia's national flag flutters at a construction site in Kuala Lumpur. In recent years, Malaysia has fallen behind giant neighbor Indonesia in attracting foreign direct investment.   © AP

KUALA LUMPUR -- When Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced plans this month to invest $6 billion in Malaysia over the next 14 years, the government hailed it as a win for the country.

"AWS was invited by many ASEAN countries but chose Malaysia," national news agency Bernama quoted Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim as saying in parliament, referring to the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations. "This means it would increase the confidence [of other investors] and spur the entry of various investors from both the West and East."

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