KUALA LUMPUR: The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (Miti), which previously contended that the trade surplus with the US stands at US$5 billion and not US$25 billion as per numbers quoted by the US government, has furnished American officials with an explanation for it, citing the current structure of the world economy. Speaking to reporters at the launch of Honeywell Regional Asean Headquarters in Bangsar South City, Miti Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said the two governments have gone through the numbers and compared notes on what had contributed to the difference in their numbers. “We have explained that this has got to do with the world economy, a large number of US multinational companies are doing business here and we are exporting a lot to the world, not just the US, and we are importing a lot from the US as well,” he said, adding that recent purchases made by Malaysian aviation players from the US could bridge the gap. Mustapa also expressed hopes for a budget that is supportive of investment and trade. He expects Malaysia can sustain its double-digit exports growth performance going forward, after having recorded a 30.9% jump in July. Meanwhile, Honeywell International Inc, which has had a presence in Malaysia for more than 30 years, is aiming to achieve about 15% revenue growth from its Asean operations, which equates to being between two and three times the regions average gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the next two to three years. Honeywell is a US conglomerate involved in the aerospace, home and building technologies, performance materials and technologies and safety and productivity solutions segments. It is also the first multinational company to join Malaysian Investment Development Authorities’ Principal Hub initiative. Asean contributes about US$800 million (RM3.38 billion) in sales to Honeywell’s total revenue of US$39 billion. In Malaysia, Honeywell has invested more than US$500 million and has a workforce of over 1,500 employees. Its Asean president Briand Greer said Malaysia was the destination of choice for Honeywell to set up its regional headquarters due to the encouragement received from Malaysian authorities. “Fundamentally it is well located in the region. We have put our factories in Penang, we have had a great working relationship with Malaysia,” Greer said. Honeywell’s new Asean regional headquarters, which will be housed at its existing premises in Malaysia, will support its businesses across the region by providing leadership, local and timely decision-making and the capability to deliver innovative, specific solutions to industries including aerospace, oil and gas, automation and process controls, home and building solutions, industrial safety, mobile business productivity and automated warehouse operations. The Asian countries are expected to lead market growth in the Industrial Internet of Things arena, which is expected to be worth US$54 billion by 2020.