According to a global research firm, Malaysia is among the top 10 most attractive markets for automakers to start or maintain automotive manufacturing operations in, Malay Mail Online reports.

The country received a score of 65.4 out of 100 in BMI Research’s index, above the Asian average score of 58.5. The Fitch Group subsidiary cited the nation’s diverse autos production landscape, strong automotive industry policy and good logistics structure as key contributors to the high score.

Malaysia was also ranked as one of the top five most attractive markets in the region in BMI’s Autos Production Risk/Reward Index (RRI).

“Malaysia’s high rank on our Autos Production RRI is largely thanks to its diverse autos production landscape, reflecting the variety of brands being produced in the country (scoring 98.2 out of a possible 100), strong automotive industry policy (scoring 80.9 out of a possible 100) and good logistics infrastructure (scoring 74.5 out of a possible 100),” the firm revealed in its report.

The firm also credited the country’s stable long-and short-term economic and political environment – with low operational risks – for providing a sound investment backdrop when compared to regional peers. It however added that the small size of Malaysia’s labour force and lower growth opportunities for automakers might be a deterrent.

“Dragging on Malaysia’s attractiveness are low scores of 23.6 and 43.6 out of a possible 100 for its vehicle production growth (based on our five-year average forecast) and size of labour force indicators, which lag well behind the Asia regional averages of 47.1 and 60.1 respectively,” the firm said.