PETALING JAYA: Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz has said that Malaysia will find it a challenge to avoid an economic recession next year, Malay Mail reports.

However, he is confident that Malaysia will have positive economic growth at least until the third quarter of this year.

“We are an open economy, trade to GDP is 120%,” he reportedly said in reference to Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP) being highly dependent on international trade, during a live interview with CNN last night.

“But the concern will be 2023... we will need to see how the world economy performs then. That’s when I think we really need to relook at some of our policies,” he added.

Tengku Zafrul also revealed that the subsidies in Malaysia — which have been touted as the reason for Malaysia’s relatively low inflation rates — will become more difficult to maintain “in the long term”.