Malaysia is a federal constitutional monarchy in Southeast Asia. It consists of thirteen states and three federal territories and has a total landmass of 329,847 square kilometres (127,350 sq mi) separated by the South China Sea into two similarly sized regions, Peninsular Malaysia and Malaysian Borneo. Land borders are shared with Thailand, Indonesia, and Brunei, and maritime borders exist with Singapore, Vietnam, and the Philippines. The capital city is Kuala Lumpur, while Putrajaya is the seat of the federal government. In 2010 the population exceeded 27.5 million, with over 20 million living on the Peninsula.

Malaysia has its origins in the Malay Kingdoms present in the area which, from the 18th century, became subject to the British Empire. The first British territories were known as the Straits Settlements, whose establishment was followed by the Malay kingdoms becoming British protectorates. The territories on Peninsular Malaysia were first unified as the Malayan Union in 1946. Malaya was restructured as the Federation of Malaya in 1948, and achieved independence on 31 August 1957. Malaya united with Sabah, Sarawak, and Singapore on 16 September 1963, with si being added to give the new country the name Malaysia. However, less than two years later in 1965, Singapore was expelled from the federation. Since independence, Malaysia has had one of the best economic records in Asia, with GDP growing an average 6.5% for almost 50 years. The economy has traditionally been fuelled by its natural resources, but is expanding in the sectors of science, tourism, commerce and medical tourism.



The country is multi-ethnic and multi-cultural, which plays a large role in politics. The government system is closely modelled on the Westminster parliamentary system and the legal system is based on English Common Law. The constitution declares Islam the state religion while protecting freedom of religion. The head of state is the King, known as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. He is an elected monarch chosen from the hereditary rulers of the nine Malay states every five years. The head of government is the Prime Minister.

Malaysia contains the southernmost point of continental Eurasia, Tanjung Piai. Located in the tropics, it is a megadiverse country, with large numbers of endemic flora and fauna.

Pepper in Malaysia

Malaysia’s top areas of pepper cultivation are divided into three regions; Sarawak which contributed to 98% of the total annual production, Sabah and Peninsular Malaysia. Black and white pepper is produced and exported from these regions.

Malaysia’s pepper harvest begins in May. Increasing by 2% when compared to 2021, Malaysian pepper production in 2022 amounted to 22,000 Mt which comprised of 70% or 15,400 Mt black  pepper and 30% or 6,600 Mt of white pepper. When compared to the average production during the last ten years, it is 3% increase.

Recording a drop by 9% as compared to 2021, Malaysia’s export of pepper in 2022 amounted to 6,794 Mt of which 5,474 Mt comprised of whole pepper and 1,320 Mt of ground pepper. With a
total income from pepper export amounting to USD 41 Million, Malaysian main market was reported to be Japan with 45% of the total export by Malaysia, Viet Nam with 14% and Taipei, Chinese with 9%.

Description 2022 2013 Average
Area under pepper (ha) 8,020 17,437 11,604
Pepper Production (mt) 22,000 23,800 20,979
Pepper Export (mt) 6,794 11,779 8,880
Export Earnings from pepper (USD’000) 41,433 50,133 38,621
Import of pepper (mt) 4,519 2,868 3,528
Domestic Consumption (mt) 11,200 10,500 11,031
Exchange Rate (MYR/USD) 4.39 4.03 4.18