Malaysia's economy grew at an annual pace of 5.2 percent in the third quarter, the central bank said on Friday, as strong domestic demand compensated for a weak export sector.
The third-quarter growth beat economists' expectations of a 4.8 percent expansion.
Both private and public sector investment was strongly robust during the quarter, Bank Negara Governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz told a news conference.
We would envisage that this will continue, she added.
With exports faltering, much of Malaysia's growth has been driven by strong domestic demand and government spending on infrastructure projects, such as a new mass transit system for the capital Kuala Lumpur, and Iskandar, a big industrial zone near Singapore. Prime Minister Najib Razak must call an election by April next year and is expected to stress Malaysia's robust growth as a key part of his campaign.
Private sector investment rose 22.9 percent from a year ago, while public sector investment increased 22.4 percent, Friday's data showed.
The central bank also on Friday revised up annual growth in the second quarter to 5.6 percent, from an already strong pace of 5.4 percent.
The central bank kept its official GDP target for 2012 at between 4-5 percent. But it added that, based on the performance over the first three quarters of the year, full-year growth should come in at the top of that range or slightly better.