Malaysia - Country Commercial Guide
Trade Financing
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Methods of Payment

Exports to Malaysia may be financed through cash in advance, open accounts, or letters of credit issued to importers by banks in Malaysia. Financing is readily available in the domestic market to Malaysian importers. Exporters requiring credit ratings can obtain them from two local credit rating institutions, the RAM, and the Malaysian Rating Corp. Berhad (MARC). 

For more information about payment methods or other trade finance options, please read the Trade Finance Guide For U.S. exporters.

To access Malaysia’s ICS section on financing, visit the U.S. Department of State Investment Climate Statement website.

Banking Systems

The structure of the Malaysian financial system has evolved to become less fragmented through consolidation and rationalization. Central Bank of Malaysia, called Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), directed the merger of Malaysia’s local banking institutions into ten anchor banks, which was completed in 2002. Malaysia maintains a dual banking system, with a conventional banking system operating together with an Islamic banking system. Malaysia has many full-fledged Islamic banks, including foreign-owned entities, conventional institutions that have established Islamic subsidiaries, and entities conducting foreign currency business. All financial institutions are permitted to conduct national currency Malaysian Ringgit (RM) and non-RM businesses.  

Foreign Exchange Controls

Residents and non-residents are permitted to carry into and out of Malaysia, ringgit notes not exceeding USD 10,000 equivalent per person. There is no limit for a resident and non-resident to carry into and out of Malaysia foreign currency notes, but they are required to declare in Customs Form 22 if the total amount of the foreign currency exceeds USD 10,000 equivalent. 

U.S. Banks

Currently, three U.S. banks have operations in Malaysia

· Bank of America 

· Citibank 

· J.P. Morgan Chase Bank 


Local Correspondent Banks

Local banks in Malaysia have correspondent relationships with banks in the United States. 

· Affin Bank 

· Agro Bank 


· Alliance Bank 

· AmBank 

· Bank Muamalat 

· Exim Bank 

· Hong Leong Bank 

· HSBC Bank 

· Maybank 

· Public Bank 

· RHB 

· Standard Chartered Bank 

· UOB 

Digital Banking License 2012

In December 2020, Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) issued the Policy Document on Licensing Framework for Digital Banks to establish a framework for digital banking in Malaysia. Those digital banks will function the same as traditional banks, except they will operate entirely online. That step aims to provide greater access to underserved and underserved segments of society by making products and services more accessible.  

For more information 

Licensing Framework for Digital Banks   

List of Digital Banking Contenders 2021