Friday, February 27, 2009

Malaysia’s Economy Grows at Slowest Pace in 7 Years

Malaysia Economy only grew 0.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Still remember the assurance from politicians like Najib and Mohamed Yakop on the Malaysia economy?

Now what say you?

Is the economy still sound and intact?

Do you think our politicians have waked up ?

It is gutter politics that they care, their concentration is only on UMNO party Election and the 2 more coming by election..........not enough with that ? May be Karpal Singh is under their politicial plan now ...............

violent attack towards dap karpal singh and lim lip eng at parliament 260209 02

Rakyat Butter and Bread...... who cares?

By Stephanie Phang

Feb. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Malaysia’s economy expanded at the slowest pace in seven years last quarter as exports fell, adding pressure on the government to boost spending to counter a global slump that’s cost thousands of manufacturing jobs.

Southeast Asia’s third-largest economy grew 0.1 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier, down from a 4.7 percent gain in the previous three months, the statistics department said in a statement today. Economists were expecting a 1.5 percent increase.

Malaysia’s central bank cut borrowing costs for a third straight meeting this week, saying the risk that the economy will contract in 2009 has risen. The government plans a second stimulus package in March to prevent the country from following Asian exporters including Singapore and Hong Kong into recession as sales of Intel Corp. chips and IOI Corp. palm oil slide.

External demand collapsed in the fourth quarter, weighing heavily on Malaysia’s externally oriented economy,” said Nikhilesh Bhattacharyya, an economist at Moody’s in Sydney. “I don’t believe any fiscal stimulus package can rescue Malaysia from recession. All that it will do is to limit the damage and severity. In this sense it is hugely important.”

The country’s benchmark stock index fell for a second day today and the ringgit declined for a fourth day to 3.7065 against the dollar, the weakest since March 2006. The economic data were released after markets closed.

Bigger Stimulus

The economy expanded 4.6 percent last year, the slowest pace in seven years. The government, which expects 2009 growth to slow to an eight-year low of 3.5 percent, will revise the forecast next month, Finance Minister Najib Razak said Feb. 17. The last time Malaysia posted an annual contraction was in 1998.

The second stimulus, due to be unveiled on March 10, may be as large as 30 billion ringgit ($8.1 billion), Citigroup Inc. said this week. The extra spending may exceed 10 billion ringgit to 15 billion ringgit, Trade Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said in an interview aired today on CNBC.

Najib, who is also deputy premier, is due to replace Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi next month and needs to prevent the economic slowdown from fueling public discontent after the government suffered its worst election result in half a century last year.

The government unveiled a 7 billion ringgit plan in November and the central bank has cut its overnight policy rate to 2 percent, the lowest since the benchmark was introduced in April 2004, to bolster local consumption as companies cut jobs amid faltering demand.

‘Tough’ Environment

“The environment this year is going to be tough,” Bumiputra-Commerce Holdings Bhd. Chief Executive Officer Nazir Razak said Feb. 23. The Malaysian bank, which has had four consecutive quarters of profit declines, expects consumer loans growth to slow, he said.

Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd., the nation’s biggest semiconductor assembler, plans to cut all its 1,700 temporary workers as it expects losses to widen, RHB Research Institute Sdn. said yesterday after its analyst met company officials. Profit at IOI, Malaysia’s second-biggest palm oil producer, has fallen two straight quarters.

Malaysian exports posted their biggest drop in almost seven years in December. Retrenchments in the country’s manufacturing industry jumped 86 percent to 18,578 last year.

Consumer Confidence

“There is a very real danger that Malaysia may witness the self-reinforcing vicious cycles gripping the developed world, where deteriorating job conditions feed into lower consumer confidence and depressed household spending, forcing employers to sack staff,” said Bhattacharyya at Moody’s

The $181 billion economy has “little chance” of avoiding a recession as exports and commodity prices tumble, he said.

Malaysia’s manufacturing industry shrank 8.8 percent in the fourth quarter, compared with a 1.8 percent gain the previous three months. Exports of goods and services plunged 13.4 percent, after growing 5.1 percent previously.

Investment as measured by gross fixed capital formation declined 10.2 percent last quarter for the first time since mid- 2002, the department said. Private consumption growth weakened to 5.3 percent.

Slowing growth will contain prices increases and lead to a continued easing in inflation this year, the central bank said in a separate statement. Malaysian policy makers will continue to focus on ensuring access to credit, it said.

“While global efforts have been intensified to counter the effects of the slowdown, risks remain on the downside and recovery is likely to be slow and protracted,” Bank Negara Malaysia said. “The timely implementation of the fiscal stimulus and providing the necessary policy support to strengthen the domestic sources of growth will also be vital to supporting the overall growth” in Malaysia.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Welcome to Malaysia, land of the sweetheart deal

FEB 25 — First, take a one-sided concession agreement, in favour of yourself of course. Then get a federal gvernment guarantee. Throw in an enormous profit margin, of say 50 per cent over 30 years, and you've got yourself a triple-A rated sweetheart deal.

Welcome to Malaysia, where privatisation has often favoured concessionaires over consumers and taxpayers, and indeed the federal government itself.

Water assets, toll highways, power plants: the list of infrastructure deals with deliciously generous terms handed out under the previous administration of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad just grows longer.

Yesterday, for example, it was revealed that Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd effectively collects a toll from every passenger who goes through the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

It does not matter if these passengers use the high-speed KLIA Ekspres service to Kuala Lumpur Sentral or take a cab: ERL is paid a portion of whatever Malaysia Airport Holdings Bhd collects in passenger service charges.

Even passengers at the Low-Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) pay ERL.

Like several lucrative highway concessions, including one for the Lebuhraya Damansara Puchong, such deals protect the operators from falling traffic through subsidies, either direct or indirect.

According to declassified concession documents, the LDP concessionaire has to date received compensation from the government equivalent to about half the highway's construction cost.

It was either that or a guaranteed rate hike, take it or leave it. So far, the federal government has mostly taken it.

The same kind of ultimatum has been put to the Selangor state government by the private water companies. Basically, if the state government doesn't buy them out by April, Selangor's households will pay more for water. Of course, this situation is the product of a combination of factors, and not of the water concessions alone.

Years of cumulative privatisation, nice, easy terms and, finally, a last desperate attempt to rationalise Peninsular Malaysia's water system, have put a loaded gun to the Selangor state government's head, wielded by companies such as Puncak Niaga Bhd, which controls Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas), and Syarikat Pengeluar Air Selangor Holdings Berhad (Splash).

And don't even mention sewage company Indah Water Konsortium, whose failed existence might one day need yet another sweetheart deal.

There's nothing wrong with privatisation in itself. But these deals seem to show that everything that should have been done was not, and everything that should not have, was.

There was the first-come-first-served policy. Whoever came up with the first privatisation proposal of its kind pretty much got the deal. This of course begat a surge in half-baked, badly-priced, poorly designed proposals of any and all kinds. Build over the Klang River and call it the Kuala Lumpur Linear City? Sure. Charge households individually for sewage treatment? Why not, eh?

Then this was aggravated by the sometimes complete absence of oversight. Infrastructure development is an old, well-established game, and pricing in construction, materials, expertise and the odd consultant or two is not rocket science.

There are rules of thumb, formulas, guidelines, set pieces of negotiations even. Except in those heady days, Mat Salleh financiers fell over each other trying to lend money to the then United Engineers Malaysia Bhd and its North-South Expressway project because the deal was so yummy.

So juicy were the terms that it just had to be kept a deep, dark national secret, and taken just over 20 years for Malaysian motorists, consumers and taxpayers to be told what exactly those terms and guarantees were.

So with humongous loans hanging over your head, with repayments stretched out over your remaining lifetime, and money collected in small change every day, where's the profit to be made?

That's why you should always award the construction of the dam, highway, treatment plant, power plant, fill name of infrastructure project here, to a parent or sister construction company for the first round of short-term profit. Then float your company on the then-booming Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange and sell a chunk of it to the Employees Provident Fund, and there's your second round. Rinse, repeat.

Leave all the risk to the Government of Malaysia and its shareholders, the taxpayers. Much like KLIA's passenger throughput, it doesn't matter if you drive, or bathe, or fly, or don't. You're paying anyway.(The Financial Insider)

Friday, February 20, 2009

When UMNO is always correct..................

I am really amused with the way Mr.Big Mouth "Hishamuddin Hussein" given his speech in yesterday gathering. The gathering which originally aimed to attract 10,000 people but only ended up 2,000 people attended it (the response has already told us the answer).

See the uninspiring and lacklustre speech from the Mr.Big Mouth as recorded by Malaysiakini.

Mr.Big Mouth, where were you when Mahathir initiatied constitutional amendments which removed immunities for the royals in 1993?

Again, Mr.Big Mouth, where were you when UMNO uttered such word as "natang" to Sultan Terengganu?

As long as their leaders still in the state of denial and whatever things done by UMNO are always correct, you can see the future of this country....




hishammuddin hussien and umno bn youth pwtc support sultan rule 200209 05

Thursday, February 19, 2009

More worrying economy news for Malaysian.....Who cares?

More alarming news about the economy situation in Malaysia and the next victim as expected will be none other than Small Medium Industries, that employ slightly over half of the Malaysian workforce, due to hefty shringking local and export sales .........

But now the government and opposition still focusing on Elizabeth Wong 's nude photoes, impasse in Perak state, Umno coming election, two coming" bukit" by election. Expect all these drama to end soon? Hardly....Why?

I am damn sure more gutter politics will surface in the striking distance ............

Rakyat's bread and butter, who cares?


Falling local sales worry SMEs

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 19 — Currently surviving on past orders, manufacturers say the dearth of new ones could tip them over, particularly if domestic demand continues to slip in the same way that global consumption has all but disappeared.

The warning comes on the heels of manufacturing sector sales plunging nearly 21 per cent in December to RM37.4 billion from the previous year and 17.2 per cent month-on-month.

Of 106 industries covered by the department of statistics, 63 posted a drop in sales value, the largest falls recorded in refined petroleum products, electrical and electronics, and basic industrial chemicals.

Small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which employ 5.6 million or slightly over half of the country's workforce, have seen orders dry up by 50-60 per cent — in more extreme cases 80 per cent, according to SMI Association of Malaysia president Chua Tiam Wee.

“It came about pretty fast in the last three months; the next six months will be crucial as we expect the situation to deteriorate especially in the export and commodity-based industries,” he told BT.

There are an estimated 548,000 SMEs and they account for 99.2 per cent of the 600,000 active companies registered in the country. Because they form the backbone of the economy, their health is a good barometer of the economy.

According to the secretary of the association, Lee Teck Meng, 90 per cent of 45,000 upstream manufacturers were already in “crisis mode” owing to the sharp reversal in demand. He added that the majority of SMEs do not have reserves which can tide them beyond half a year.

In the past three years, domestic consumption had been a reliable engine of growth, expanding steadily by double digits annually. However, it has begun sputtering noticeably especially after the Chinese New Year period. Given Malaysians' love of eating, many take the 15 per cent decline in food product demand as a significant indication of serious belt tightening.

Chua believes that steps must be taken quickly to boost domestic demand if jobs and companies are to be saved. “Of some consolation is that 27 per cent of our SMEs manufacture for export, but the bulk or 70 per cent are focused on the domestic market.”

Besides ensuring that banks keep credit lines open, he suggested the government's forthcoming second stimulus programme be as broad-based as possible, with a focus on maintaining disposable income.

A second round of pump-priming in the form of a mini-Budget is expected in March but because nothing has been seen of the first stimulus injection of RM7 billion announced in November, there are grave concerns that the attempts could fall short.

On the employment front, official statistics reveal that 1.031 million were employed in the manufacturing sector in December, nearly 20,000 or 2 per cent less than in November. The number was 68,106 or 6.2 per cent less than a year ago.

Already on shorter work hours and fewer shifts, many SMEs say retrenchment of local workers will be a last resort. Many employ foreign workers — some up to 40 per cent of their workforce — and will not renew contracts.

Chua proposed that an existing RM2 billion SME fund be enlarged as most of the allocation has already been taken up. Other suggestions include the reduction of corporate taxes, stamp duties and service taxes, as well as allowing firms to offset profits in previous years with anticipated losses in the coming years.

Privatisation or outsourcing the management of planned infrastructure projects might help fast track their implementation, he added. — Business Times Singapore

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

18-02-2009: Prices of luxury condos to remain volatile

KUALA LUMPUR: Prices of condominiums in the Kuala Lumpur city centre are expected to remain volatile even after the Malaysian property market recovers from the effects of the global economic downturn, expected in two years, according to property consultant Rahim & Co.

“The fundamental thing is there is definitely an oversupply situation. Whether the economy is strong or whether it continues to grow at a healthy rate, there is the fundamental issue of oversupply. With this situation, I don’t see prices even stabilising or picking up in the near future, especially for luxury condominiums,” Savills Rahim & Co managing director Robert Ang said. Savills Rahim & Co is the international arm of Rahim & Co.

He said 1,200 units of luxury condos had been completed in the last two years, while at least another 1,000 units are expected to be completed in the next two years.

“We see these apartments as not very well occupied, so obviously there’s a bit of strain on investors, in terms of rental yields and returns,” he said.

He added, however, the current compressed yields of between 4% and 5% for the condos were expected to pick up to 2006 levels of 6% to 7%, as the property market weakened further.

Rahim & Co sees the supply overhang of condos in the KLCC vicinity at between 25% and 30%, while the valuations of such properties could fall between 15% and 20% this month, with a further decline expected in the next three months, its founder and executive chairman, Datuk Abdul Rahim Rahman said.

Properties in the area currently command an average price of between RM1,200 and RM1,600 per square foot (psf), he said.

Abdul Rahim said, however, the country’s property market, which had yet to feel the brunt of the economic downturn, could recover within two years, although this would depend on the effects of the government’s planned second economic stimulus package.

“Before it starts recovering, we have to face the worst. We are expecting the economy to recover in 12 to 16 months. The real estate market usually recovers slower than the economy, so it could recover within two years,” he said.

He said the current steep prices of homes in the KLCC area, weakening demand from foreign buyers hit by the global economic downturn, and cautious lending by banks here had led to the softening of demand for these properties.

“How much more the valuations will decline, we do not know. We will have to wait and see within the next two to three months,” he said.

Rahim & Co held a media briefing here yesterday on the outlook for the Malaysian property market. The company, whose consultancy services include valuation, real estate agency and research, will also organise a seminar here entitled “Looking Beyond: Challenges and Opportunities in the Malaysian Property Market” in March.

Abdul Rahim said office space rentals in the city centre remained stable, with the current rate of RM8 psf expected to remain.

But for areas outside the central business district, which will see between eight million and 10 million sq ft of office space expected to come on stream by 2011, rental values could then plunge by as much as 15%.

On the outlook for landed residential properties, he said while demand had tapered off, prices remained largely intact.

Meanwhile, Ang said the company had advised its clients to defer new residential property launches until the middle of the year, or as late as the third quarter.

“We at Rahim & Co have advised two of our clients planning high-end projects to defer their launches, scheduled for December 2008 and early this year. Especially for high-end projects, the demand is very, very weak at the moment,” he said.

He said the company also advised its clients to downsize apartment units or use lower-cost fittings to make prices more attractive to buyers, adding that buyers were now looking for lower-priced condos for own occupancy, with investment purchases put on hold.

Was this the future of Umno?

mukhriz mahathir khir toyo khairy jamaluddin hujah dialogue 180209 01

One thing for sure, there are none of the three qualified to lead UMNO Youth. Look at the way they have debated in the issues raised by the moderator, we can only pity about the quality of the candidates that will definetly heading for no where if they still never learn from the mistake and hovering in the state of denial.

The Party need a "NEW MALAY " that is strong enough to eradicate public perception of corruption, money politics and arrogance of the party but not about the backward thinking.

Sigh.....till when they can wake up?

FEB 18 — At best last night's televised debate between the three Umno Youth chief candidates confirmed what an increasing number of Malaysians think of Umno — that its leaders are out of touch, arrogant, hypocritical.

Worst still, it showed the appeal to the Umno ground of particularly racist views.

At one stage Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo appeared to be even suggesting that it was blasphemous for the government to consider non-Malays on the same standing as Malays.

Malays, he argued, had a special position under the federal constitution. Likewise Islam and as such it could not be placed on the same standing as non-Islamic religions.

Even when the moderator pointed out to Dr Khir that he was one of the leaders in Umno and Barisan Nasional that lost an entire state to the Pakatan Rakyat, he argued that it was because his party was not Islamic enough and did not champion the Malays enough.

Never once did Dr Khir acknowledge the public perception of corruption and arrogance in his government when he was Selangor menteri besar.

To their credit, the other two candidates — Khairy Jamaluddin and Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir — appeared a little uncomfortable with some of Dr Khir's remarks.

Mukhriz appeared to be way out of his league during the debate, and looked like he did not really want to be there.

From his responses — that he was very proud of his father — it was clear that what he was trying to offer Malaysians nostalgic for his father's strong leadership a return to Mahathirism.

Mukhriz offered support for Dr Khir's assertion that the government has been slow in invoking the Internal Security Act on DAP politician Karpal Singh over his threat to sue the Perak Sultan.

He also voiced support for a continuation of the policy to teach science and mathematics in English, which was one of the last major policies introduced by his father.

But among the three men it was probably only Khairy who attempted to project a more centrist view.

The current deputy Youth chief played it safe when it came to the issue of affirmative action policies — he was for such policies to continue — but he avoided the vitriolics of the other two men when it came to the use of the ISA.

He also pointed out that the upcoming power transition from his father-in-law Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to Datuk Seri Najib Razak would be meaningless without reform.

Compared to Dr Khir's conservative bordering on extremist views, Khairy's message was probably the most palatable of the three candidates (Mukhriz was almost not there).

He appeared to be saying sorry on behalf of his father-in-law when he acknowledged the failure to deliver the reforms promised in 2004 led to BN and Umno's disastrous performance in last year's general election.

But the fact that the moderator Dr Agus Yusof pointed out to some ironic applause from the audience that Khairy was also seen to be a liability which contributed to BN's results, suggests Malaysians remain quite sceptical and cynical about what the deputy Youth chief had to say.

If the audience reactions were anything to go by Dr Khir probably won the debate.

If the audience reactions are a reflection of the views of Umno members, Dr Khir will probably become the next Umno Youth chief.

And if that happens, it will probably see a more nationalist Umno emerging, and one which is opposed to reforms and changes, and one which will lead a more hardline government.

Leslie Lau is consultant editor to The Malaysian Insider.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Rate cut raises demand for property refinancing

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 — Bank Negara Malaysia’s decision to cut the overnight policy rate by 75 basis points to 2.5 per cent recently will push up demand for property refinancing activity, Rahim & Co Research Sdn Bhd’s executive chairman Datuk Abdul Rahim Rahman said today.

This, he said, is expected to take place within three to six months from now. Abdul Rahim said buyers were currently adopting a wait-and-see attitude, hoping for property prices to fall further.

“The reduction in interest rate will definitely encourage people though at the same time the banks are more cautious in lending,” he said.

“But from what we see, it will definitely see an increase in applications for refinancing as the banks are also giving more incentives, such as not having to pay any fee to migrate to their banks for refinancing.”

He also said that the stimulus package introduced by the government as well as developers offering more extra packages for housing loans were also among

factors to spur the refinancing activity. Speaking to reporters here, Abdul Rahim said Malaysia’s property industry is expected to pick up a year later after recovery of the country’s economy.

“In 1997, it took between three and four years to recover but we were really affected then. But now our economy is much more stable and it will recover within two years, depending on the government’s effort in building up the economy,” he said.

Abdul Rahim said though some property launches have been deferred but the trend will only continue until the third quarter of this year. “We at Rahim & Co have advised our clients to defer the launches. In fact, these launches were actually scheduled for December and early this year,” he said.

“We have advised them to evaluate the situation in the middle or third quarter this year, especially for high-end projects, which I think the demand is very weak.”

According to Abdul Karim, it is not wise to launch luxury condominiums and landed properties at this moment due to slower demand amid the current gloomy economic situation.

He said high-end condominiums, especially those in the Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC) area, will see 15 to 20 per cent drop in sales as most of the buyers within the area are foreigners. “Some of the buyers are from overseas and because of such buyers being affected by the economic downturn, there is now a softening in demand in the KLCC area,” he added.

The KLCC, which houses over 12,000 units of apartments currently, will see more than 1,000 units being completed over the next one to two years.

On the office market, Abdul Karim said the rental value is likely to go down by 10 to 15 per cent as more than eight to 10 million square feet of office space are expected to be completed by 2010 to 2011.

“When these come into the market, it is going to affect the supply and demand situation of office buildings, with some effect on the rental, which is very stable now,” he said.

Under the current situation, the prices did not show any indication of picking up in the near future, he added.

Say no to Khir Toyo and vote him out in the next election

The death of trust in politics — The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 16 — Switch on the television, flick through the pages of newspapers and surf the Internet and one thing is obvious: we are witnessing the death of trust in our politics and politicians.

Gone is the confidence that politicians mean what they say. Disappearing is the belief that the men and women we elect to high office are motivated by anything else other than their own interest.

Faltering is our confidence that politicians will be guardians of our institutions, standard bearers of morality and principles.

For a close look at someone who fits the bill of the modern day Malaysian politician look no further than former Selangor Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Khir Toyo. He is a lifetime away from the class of Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Dr Hussein Onn, Tun Dr Ismail and the Umno leaders of another generation.

His response to the circumstances surrounding the release of nude pictures of Bukit Lanjan assemblywoman Elizabeth Wong shows him up badly.

So far this is what we know: the pictures of her were taken by her former boyfriend. She was in her apartment in Petaling Jaya. Some say she was asleep but others swear that she was in a state of undress but wide awake. The pictures were hawked to several newspapers by a man who apparently requested some pecuniary benefit.

The pictures are now being circulated through MMS. This is the sum of all we know — for now.

Elizabeth’s supporters say that she is the victim of a crime; that she does not need to apologise to anyone because: a) she is unmarried; b) she has every right to be naked in her own bedroom; c) she had no role in the release of the photographs into the public domain.

Was this a simple case of a former spurned lover exacting revenge on a public figure? Or was this a political fix-up? Was the man a married man?

At this point no one knows. In the days ahead when more information about the case emerges, the halo of the victim may slip from Wong. Then she may have to consider ending her political career. With her reputation scarred it would be untenable for her to continue to serve as a lawmaker.

Dr Khir Toyo, not a believer in evidence or wisdom (judging by how he sanctioned the demolition of a temple a week before Deepavali), wants her to resign now.

He said: “This is about morality, whether the pictures were taken with her consent or without her consent is another matter. I cannot accept a lawmaker whose morality is questionable.'”

This statement is rich coming from Khir Toyo.

He is the last person in Malaysia who should be pontificating about morality. The state government he led was mired in countless allegations of corruption. The stench of some of those accusations continued to follow him.

Judging by the vitriol he invited after he released his demand for Wong’s resignation, it is clear that few believed that he meant what he said about morality.

They saw him for what he is — another opportunistic politician with little interest about anything apart from his political well-being. Just another modern day Malaysian politician, with position, titles, money but missing the most precious commodity — the trust of his constituents.

Monday, February 16, 2009

When Khir Toyo barks again...............

What's wrong with you, Khir Toyo?

Can't you see that who is the real victim? who is the real culprit ?

Imagine your daughter face the same situation? what would you say?

You better open your eye big big before you bark like mad dog......

First they attack Dr.Halimah Ali, now Elizabeth Wong is the latest victim.

Read below for more information.
Khir, please ask yourself. If a lunatic asshole with bad intention spy on you while you are at sleep and have captured your naked fat body with camera and later circulate it out with sick motives, should you be blamed on this?

Don't you know that this is gross invasion of privacy?

Use your head to thinklah before you bark!!!!!!!!!!!

As for Malaysia's politics situation, I have no eye see already......

I should phrase it as "Gutter Politics" has attacked Malaysian.....


Tengku Razaleigh, being senior umno member, is the most qualified person to give his impartial opinion on the current constitutional crisis by comparing 1993's events with the current constitutional crisis in Perak.

He has ended up his write-up by saying :-

"Was greater harm done to the sovereignty of the Rulers in 1993 through Parliament or a week ago on the streets of Perak?

And is today’s Umno, with its inconsistent adherence to the rule of law, its inconstant respect for the key institutions of our country, a credible or effective defender of the Rulers and of the laws upholding this institution?"


Sunday, February 15, 2009

Mahathir and Umno is the one who embarrasing royals

Yes, Datuk Hisham, I cannot agree with you any more..................

Husam: Umno Youth are the ones embarrassing royals

By Shannon Teoh

PETALING JAYA, Feb 15 - Pakatan Rakyat today continued its attempts to reverse the perception of “derhaka” with Pas vice president Datuk Husam Musa labelling Umno Youth’s pro-monarchy demonstrations as “embarrassing” to the royalty.

“They have been embarrassing the royalty by giving Malay boys RM50 and a t-shirt to gather but only end up with 1,000 to 1,500 people,” he told reporters before a PR coalition-building workshop today.

Umno Youth has been organising rallies to defend Malay rulers while labelling PR as anti-monarchy and has accused it of “derhaka” or treason, over its refusal to accept the Perak Sultan’s move to appoint a Barisan Nasional (BN) government.

But PR leaders at the workshop today sought to counter this claim by belittling Umno’s efforts and bringing up past examples of Umno’s tussles with the royalty.

“If we were actually challenging the sovereignty of the monarchy, why are there less than 2,000 people at the gatherings?

“Umno should stop as this is shameful. And how come it is only Umno Youth? Where is the rest of BN?” Husam added.

“If the rulers were really being challenged, even I would join the protest,” he quipped.

He stated that the fact of the matter was that PR was not challenging the position or sovereignty of the monarchy but the actions of Sultan Azlan Shah in the context of the constitution.

In his opening speech, DAP vice chairman Tunku Abdul Aziz Ibrahim also condemned the protests by Umno Youth against DAP chairman Karpal Singh’s statement that the Perak ruler can be sued over his actions which he deemed were unconstitutional.

He labelled the behaviour of Umno Youth supporters as similar to “Hitler Youth,” the Nazi extremist paramilitary group that supported Adolf Hitler’s Aryan supremacist doctrine.

“If anyone should be tried for treason, it should be Mahathir,” he said, referring to former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamed’s role in initiating constitutional amendments which removed immunities for the royals in 1993.

PKR deputy president Dr Syed Husin Ali had also slammed Umno as being the ones who were traitors

He said that when there was an impasse over who should be mentri besar in Terengganu, Umno supporters had held up banners insulting its Sultan as “Raja Binatang (Animal King).”

Friday, February 13, 2009

Yesterday Khairy, Today Khir Toyo....and end up in Police Station....

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha........................Please do not stop me......ha ha ha ha ha ha ha......

I just love the last sentence written by Malaysian Insider

"Mohamed Khir, who is also contesting the same post, tried to emulate his rival today but unlike in Ipoh, police put a stop to it." ..........(I add on)..... and the best thing is that curry rice is waiting for him.....

Cops stop pro-monarchy protest against Karpal, Khir Toyo detained briefly

GEORGE TOWN, Feb 13 – Penang police detained Datuk Seri Dr Mohamed Khir Toyo, the former Selangor mentri besar, after breaking up an illegal protest by Umno members here today.

Protesters had planned to march to DAP politician Karpal Singh's house but dispersed after police threatened to arrest them.

Mohamed Khir and a local Umno youth leader were picked up by police after leaving the scene of the protests.

They were taken to the state police headquarters for questioning and released later.

It is not clear if they will face any criminal charges.

Mohamed Khir had planned to lead the march to Karpal's house.

Karpal has become a focal point of Umno protests ever since he threatened to take the Perak ruler Sultan Azlan Shah to court over his role in the current political impasse in Perak.

Sultan Azlan Shah had denied consent for Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin's Pakatan Rakyat (PR) administration in Perak to dissolve the state assembly after three seats were declared vacant by the state Speaker.

Instead, Sultan Azlan Shah invited Barisan Nasional (BN) to form a new state government, in a controversial move which PR leaders say is unconstitutional.

Since then Umno youth groups have been organising a number of small protests around the country in an attempt to whip up support from conservative Malays against PR leaders, especially Karpal.

Last week, Khairy Jamaluddin, who is contesting the Umno Youth chief's post in next month's party elections led a 1,000-strong rally in Ipoh against PR.

Mohamed Khir, who is also contesting the same post, tried to emulate his rival today but unlike in Ipoh, police put a stop to it.

Malaysia's budget transparency: ‘Surprised and embarassed’

Memalukan.....we are even worst than third world countries in term of budget transparency......

What a shocking truth!!!!!!!!!!!!!


KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia scored a dismal 35 out of 100 points in the Open Budget Index (OBI) 2008 and is ranked 53rd out of 85 countries, prompting Centre for Public Policy Studies chairman Tan Sri Dr Ramon Navaratnam to declare he was “surpised and embarassed.”

Malaysia is now listed under the “minimal information” category on Budget information provided by the Government, behind countries such as Indonesia, Thailand, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

“I am surprised and embarassed to know that our Budget is not as transparent as it should be,” Navaratnam said.

“I urge the Government to make the Budget more transparent,” he said, adding that information should trickle down to the grassroots, especially those in rural areas.

On that note, he said there is a general feeling that people do not know much about the first stimulus package, and that the Government should provide more information such as which states and areas are getting the funds and who are getting them.

Foreign investors are also interested because it would reveal the risk factors in doing business.

Navaratnam pointed out that there were two main documents that lack public accessibility in Malaysia -- the Citizen’s Budget (a simplified version of the enacted Budget) and the mid-year review on revenues and expenditure.

He said he will bring up the matter with Treasury officials, and consult the Washington-based International Budget Partnership, the non-governmental organisation that compiled the OBI Index.

He will also consult countries that are doing well on ways to improve the Malaysian index.

According to the report, the minimal information provided by the Malaysian Government makes it quite difficult for citizens to hold government accountable for its management of the public’s money.

The Budget information used was based on information in 2007 and in providing information, with the categories being extensive, significant, some, minimal or no information.

Britain, South Africa, France, New Zealand and the United States ranked the highest in the OBI, where their governments provided “extensive information.”

It was found that 80% of the world’s governments failed to provide adequate information for the public.

The key documents that should be made accessible to the public are the pre-Budget statement, Executive’s budget proposal, Citizen’s Budget, In-year Reports, Mid-year Review, Year-end Report and Audit Report.

The survey covered 124 questions on budget development -- formulation, legislative approval, implementation and audit.

This was the second time the OBI was compiled, and the first time Malaysia participated.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

March 10 Stimulus Package ...It is too late already

It is very scary to read the news below.

Malaysian government has not been doing the things that they should. When other countries such as Hong Kong and Singapore has churned out more and and more stimulus package to stimulate the economy, our politician especially Najib as a capacity as Finance Minister has been busy politicking around instead of concentrating his effort to tackle the bad economy .

First stimulus package is basically nothing for Malaysian as most of the money has not been disbursed out and worst still the second one can only out in March 10? Why not Feb 10 instead?

Najib, when will you start listening to the rakyat and understand the woes of the grass roots?

Don't you know that so far 80,000 people has been out of jobs already as mentioned by datuk Noraini Ahmad the deputy Human Resource Minister?

Again you will not get to read the news in Utusan Malaysia as they are still painting the good picture about Malaysia economy

Malaysia’s exports down sharply in December

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 12 (Reuters) - Malaysia's exports fell 14.9 percent in December from a year ago, the steepest drop in seven years, as the global economic downturn bit into the heavily trade-dependent Southeast Asian economy.
"Never before have we seen these kind of numbers, both the December industrial output and export data were below market expectations," said Wan Suhaimi at Kenaga investment bank.
"I think the worst is yet to come. The first quarter will be pretty bad given the fact the momentum of the downturn will continue," he said.
The export decline was far steeper than the 10 percent forecast by economists in a Reuters poll as demand for Asian goods from the United States and China collapsed.
Imports in December were also much worse than expected, falling 23.1 percent, government data showed on Thursday. Economists had expected imports to decline 13.7 percent.

Malaysia had pinned its hopes of weathering the global economic turmoil on Asian markets, especially China, remaining relatively strong, but Asia's economies have been hit hard recently as Western economies worsen.
Malaysian exports have been on a downward slide from since October, hurt by eroding demand the world over for its key electronics exports and falling prices for its main commodities exports -- crude and palm oil.
Analysts expect the export and factory output slump to continue, possibly leading to a contraction in gross domestic product in the first quarter of 2009.
China on Wednesday announced that exports in January fell 17.5 percent from a year earlier, after a 2.8 percent dip in December, while imports plunged 43.1 percent -- twice as much as the month before.

Malaysia is Asia's third most trade dependent economy after Hong Kong and Singapore and its exports to China fell 29.8 percent to 3.68 billion Malaysian ringgit ($1.02 billion).
Malaysias's electronics sector saw its overseas sales drop 2.56 percent from a year ago.
"We will see this kind of dire data for the next few months. I think by the end of the year, in the fourth quarter, there may be a slight recovery but its not going to be a V-shaped recession," said Irvin Seah, economist at DBS Bank in Singapore.
Malaysia's government is reportedly working on a second economic stimulus package as it tries to steer the economy away from a widely anticipated recession.
Its first spending package unveiled late last year totalled 7 billion ringgit ($1.9 billion) and economists expect the new fiscal boost to be worth 7-10 billion ringgit.
Malaysia's government still forecasts economic growth of 3.5 percent this year, although most private sector economists say growth is likely to be closer to zero.
December exports totalled 46.09 billion ringgit ($12.80 billion), while imports fell 23.1 percent from a year earlier to 34.42 billion ringgit.
In November, exports fell 4.9 percent on year to 51.8 billion ringgit.
The trade surplus in December totalled 11.67 billion ringgit, compared to an expected 9.5 billion ringgit. (Reporting by Soo Ai Peng, Niluksi Koswanage and Razak Ahmad; Writing by David Chance; Editing by Kim Coghill)

Yearly RM250,000 each for the three advisors...What a waste!!!!

According to Malaysiakini's report,, three newly appointed advisors namely Datuk Chang Ko Youn, Datuk S Veerasingam and Datuk Hamdi AbuBakar will be paid RM250,000 each a year or translate to about RM20,000 each a month.

Come on, Zambri, this is not the way to waste tax payers money. This is definetly a stupid decision and you even have not started govern Perak state. This is what you call "Menteri Besar for all rakyat" or just "Menteri Besar for Kucnu -Kuncu BN ?"

Please justify why they should be paid with such huge amounts, otherwise you should revert the decision and channeled the funds to the needy in Perak. The three Datuk already rich enough. If they are sincere enough to serve rakyat, they should voluntarily go for pay cut.....

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Zambry , this is not the way to create exco portfolios

Look at the way Dr.Zambry creates portfolios for the state executive councillors, I am almost fainted.

It seems that he just creates the position for the sake of pleasing the "kuncu-kuncu".

Come on, Zambry, why waste tax payers by creating positions which is not important at all?

Why so many " irrelevant affairs" job? can't the jobs be shared by the existing councillors?

Zambry, economy is bad. Tax payers money must be spent wisely.

Don't create so many "gaji buta" jobs. You should spend the resources to help the needy in Perak just like Nizar did previously......

Zambry announces exco portfolios

IPOH, Feb 11 — Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir today announced the portfolios of the state executive councillors which take effect immediately.

He also announced four more posts — three advisers to the menteri besar and a state information chief — who receive perks similar to those received by state executive councillors.

The portfolios are:

Zambry heads the Committee for Planning, Economy, Finance, Security, Land and Natural Resources, Agriculture, Housing and Religion.

Hamidah Osman — Industry, Investment, Entrepreneur Development, ICT, Tourism and Women's Affairs

Datuk Ramly Zahari — Infrastructure, Public Facilities, Energy and Water.

Dr Mah Hang Soon — Health, Local Government, Consumer, Environment, Transport and Non-Muslim Affairs.

Datuk Saarani Mohamad — Information, Rural Development, Poverty, Welfare and Farming.

Mohd Zahir Abdul Khalid — Education, Higher Education, Science and Technology

Zainol Fadzi Paharuddin — Culture, Youth and Sports.

Advisers to the menteri besar:

Datuk Mohd Najumuddin Elias — Adviser for Islamic Affairs.

Datuk Chang Ko Youn — Adviser for Chinese Affairs.

Datuk S. Veerasingam — Adviser for Indian Affairs.

Zambry also announced the appointment of Datuk Hamdi Abu Bakar as the state information chief. — Bernama

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Do you still remember Hamidah Osman?

Infamous Sungair Rapat assemblyman Hamidah Osman is back with her swearing in as Perak's exco members ......

Remember her famous quote?

user posted image

ai yo yo ... this racist lady also can become exco member....

It prove that Barisan has no qualified candidate at all......

I no eye see lah....

Wow why so many "Kurang ajar" people in Malaysia? How much have Khairy paid you all? RM2 ?RM5?RM50million?

Rakyat Perak will always behind you, Nizar

Datuk Seri Nizar, you will always be our Menteri Besar, the only legitimate MB elected by rakyat because of the wonderful job you have done for the people here.......

As for Najib and the 4 frogs, they have to pay back when the time comes, God is fair.....thay will reap what they sow....

Nizar says it is a referendum, and one that Pakatan will win

By Shannon Teoh

IPOH, Feb 10 – Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin poured scorn on Barisan Nasional’s (BN) claim to the Perak government today by expressing his confidence of an “overwhelming victory” in the Bukit Gantang by-elections as well as ridiculing its swearing-in of only six executive council members today.

Following the death of Pas MP Roslan Shaharum, Bukit Gantang will face a by-election which Nizar, who Pakatan Rakyat (PR) still backs as the legitimate mentri besar, believes will be an opportunity for Perak voters to “deliver the verdict that they support PR.”

“I think it will result in a referendum and, judging by the overwhelming support Perakians have given us,” he told a press conference at the official MB’s residence here, “we will win.”

As PR won the Sepetang and Changkat Jering state seats as well, Nizar said that he was confident of a “repeat and overwhelming victory” in the imminent by-elections.

Nizar also said that as BN could only swear in six instead of the full complement of 10 executive councillors today, it showed that it was not stable as it did not have the full commitment of its assemblymen.

“This shows it is an illegitimate exco which is tempang (lame). A full government will have full commitment. This situation is because it is not recognised by the rakyat,” he said.

When quizzed on speculation that the empty seats were reserved for Indian PR lawmakers who would be enticed to defect so that BN could have a multiracial lineup, Nizar pointed out that this showed how BN did not have the backing of the people as a whole.

“That resembles how mistrusted and cruel they are. There are so many negative elements in their ranks,” he said.

Perak DAP chief Ngeh Koo Ham also added that the inability of BN to swear in a full lineup was down to “huge infighting within Umno.”

“They are fighting tooth and nail to be exco members. It shows that this illegal government cannot stand for long.”

But for as long as BN has claimed the government offices, PR will have to base itself out of the MB’s residence.

Nizar announced that as they were being barred from entering the state secretariat, then it would have to conduct its meetings from the residence and it would also now be its office.

“It appears we have no other place to go to discharge our duties so we will render it from the residence, which is now also our office.”

Monday, February 9, 2009

When Irrelevant Khairy acts like a hero.....

Ai yo yo Mr. Irrelevant Khairy, your days are numbered under Najib Mongolia administration

You still want to angkat Najib backside? ai yo yo.....

Khairy calls for Nizar to be stripped of citizenship

By Shannon Teoh

IPOH, Feb 9 — Deputy Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin called for Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin to be stripped of his citizenship as he led protests by the Barisan Nasional (BN) faithful here today as part a campaign to label the Pas man a traitor.

About 1,000 mainly Umno Youth members attended the rally here under the watchful eyes of the police, as BN now hopes to shore up support for Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir, who was sworn-in by Sultan Azlan Shah last week to replace Nizar as Perak mentri besar.

Nizar has refused to resign and maintains he is still the legitimate MB.

Speeches by several BN Youth leaders suggested attempts to reverse the perception that BN’s power grab was unconstitutional and pro-Malay. Instead, the speeches portrayed Pakatan Rakyat as anti-Sultan.

The speeches were punctuated by cries of “Hidup Melayu” and “Daulat Tuanku.”

“In the old days, what did we do to those who committed treason?” Khairy asked the crowd at the Jalan Sultan Abdul Jalil field here.

The crowd replied “kill him!” as they waved banners with the words “Nizar Penderhaka Melayu Moden (Nizar is the modern day Malay traitor)” but Khairy instead said that “we only ask that they be stripped of their citizenship,” referring to Nizar and other PR leaders who have supported his decision.

The crowd started tearing up posters with pictures of Nizar, as Khairy also called for Nizar and Perak DAP chief Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham’s titles to be retracted.

Those assembled, joined by several Malay NGOs, and representatives from MCA, MIC and PPP Youth members from Perak, then took a pledge requesting Sultan Azlan Shah to do as Khairy had asked.

Khairy also told the crowd that their position should not be seen as racial as “our friends from MCA, MIC and PPP” are here.

“The anger is not just from Malays but the rakyat as the opposition has broken the principles of the Rukunegara,” the Rembau MP said.

He also called on Umno Youth members to guard the gates to the state secretariat tomorrow as Nizar and his executive councillors are expected to continue to try to report for work.

“If you see the illegal government coming, I order you as deputy Youth chief to do what is necessary,” he said.

Later, when pressed on what is “necessary” by reporters, Khairy said that as the Ipoh police chief had assured him that they would not allow the PR men to enter the premises, Umno Youth would stand down.

“I hold him to his promise. But if they are not able to deliver, then I cannot guarantee their actions due to their anger,” he said.

“This is not a constitutional crisis. This is a crisis of power,” Khairy added, stating that the fact that PR could not relinquish the state government after being ousted through due process showed that they were power-crazy.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Well Done Pakatan Rakyat

Sinchew has listed down the Pakatan Rakyat's achievement for the past ten months. These are policies that truly benefited all races that never been carried out by Barisan Nasional when they were in charged.

Rakyat will surely miss them if the dirty Umno takes over the helm of Perak State .............

Najib you really najiXXXXXX...............



















Remember the four frogs that fooled all

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 4 — Whatever the outcome of the political imbroglio in Perak, Malaysians should remember the names of Datuk Nasharudin Hashim, Mohd Osman Jailu, Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi and Hee Yit Foong forever.

They represent the worst species of politicians — self-serving; greedy; unprincipled; cowardly and dishonest.

How else would you describe politicians who go begging for votes wrapped in the colours of their political party, who rattle off reasons why Umno, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and DAP deserve to win, only to repudiate everything they told the voters less than 12 months later?

They are as despicable as Barclays Premier League footballers who kiss the badge of their club before adoring thousands only to demand a transfer 24 hours later for a bigger pay packet.

According to Nasharudin, he took the decision to switch from Umno to PKR after serious consideration of the country’s political situation and in the interest of his supporters and voters in Bota. Sure he did.

The fact that he had been forced to give up his parliamentary seat and the chairmanship of Felcra to Datuk Tajudin Rahman did not factor at all in his thinking to switch camps.

Why he did a pirouette today is anybody’s guess?

But rest assured it was not because he had a higher calling.

At a press conference in Putrajaya today, he rambled on: ”The situation in the state is critical. I have to make sacrifices.’’ Sure he did.

Then there is the case of Mohd Osman and Jamaluddin. Hard to believe that two individuals as slippery as these two managed to persuade the voters of Changkat Jering and Behrang that they were worthy of support in March.

That’s what happens when the political wave comes in, it brings in deadwood, sludge and flotsam.

The fact is that Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and PKR were challenged to field a decent crop of candidates in Election 2008. So they left the bar low. The result: a motley crew of elected representatives.

For months Mohd Osman and Jamaluddin have been planning and scheming to leave PKR, no doubt prodded by Umno/BN officials who were seeking to narrow the three-seat majority which Pakatan Rakyat enjoyed in the state assembly.

Those who believe in conspiracy theories say that the duo are hoping that by going independent and backing the BN, the corruption charges against them will disappear.

No one knows their motivation except that they put their interest above everybody else’s. Worse yet, they behaved like fugitives, hiding from their families, friends and constituents like common criminals and then offering insulting excuses.

Jamaluddin said that he was incommunicado because he was having back problems and was seeking treatment in Pahang. He also said that loyal to PKR. A day later, he resigned from PKR.

Should anyone trust a lawmaker like him? Should any voter trust him or Hee the next time they stump for votes?

In life, we usually treat the unprincipled and dishonest people shabbily. Why should politicians be given a free pass?

Ready for a dose of reality?

Malaysian, have you tighthen your seat belt?

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 5 — Warning from the government to the public: the economy is going to go through a much rougher ride this year than anticipated. This message is a stark departure from the more optimistic tone employed by the Prime Minister and his ministers since the administration unveiled its RM7 billion stimulus package in November.

For the last three months, the Abdullah administration has been confident that its pump priming will insulate the country from the worst effects of the global economic crisis, and that the growth for 2009 will be 3.5 per cent.

Even when economic indicators of Malaysia's major trading partners plunged in December and stalwarts of the local economy — electronics and commodities — performed worse than expected, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop and others stuck to the message, worried that dire language could spook Malaysians into zipping their wallets and burying themselves under a cloak of pessimism.

Not anymore, it appears. At a closed-door briefing for senior editors of the mainstream media, Najib, who is the Finance Minister, painted a gloomy outlook for the economy. He did not use the R-word but most editors left the Putrajaya briefing believing that the government would do well to keep the economy in positive territory. In the days ahead, the media may begin releasing the bad news in small doses.

For his part, Najib did not sound or look despondent. He promised an effective second stimulus package and noted that the fundamentals of the Malaysian economy — its banking system, foreign reserves and liquidity in the market — were still strong.

Najib did not go into specifics of the second stimulus package but The Malaysian Insider understands that the government is looking at spending up to RM10 billion. This will include tax and tariff cuts as well as a raft of measures to reduce the cost of doing business.

The focus of the second stimulus package is to encourage employers to keep Malaysians on their payroll during these challenging times. There also could be specific measures to have a wider definition of small and medium-sized industries as well as a more liberal interpretation of non-performing loans from the current three-month threshold to six months. Sadly, there is unlikely to be any major structural changes to the economy in the short and medium term.

The Malaysian Insider has learnt that initially there was an initiative to abolish the Foreign Investment Committee and re-look some features of the New Economic Policy. But these moves have been put on the backburner, given the difficult political environment facing the Barisan Nasional government.

CIMB group chief executive Datuk Nazir Razak yesterday suggested that the government go beyond orthodox fiscal stimulus and monetary measures and review policies which impede investments. He is not alone in believing that Malaysia needs more than another bout of pump-priming.

Fitch's director of Asia Sovereign Ratings Franklin Poon said: “In general, the country has been slow to implement structural fiscal reforms.''

A government official said: "Our focus is now on the second stimulus package. We have to roll it out soon. We are looking at restructuring aspects of the economy but the earliest we will ready to talk about it is in the middle of 2009.''

The country's high-powered Economic Council is slated to be briefed on the second stimulus package on Monday. Between now and then, it is likely that government ministers will start peppering their speeches with a more realistic assessment of how the Malaysian economy will perform this year.

Expect them to use the R-word more frequently. Not Recession but Revision. The growth estimates could be revised downwards to between 0.5 per cent and 1 per cent while the budget deficit of the Gross Domestic Product may be revised upwards from 4.8 per cent to 6 per cent.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

04-02-2009: Focus on strategies, not just stimulus

I prefer Nazir than Najib? what say you? he talks more sense compare to his brother .....

KUALA LUMPUR: A top banker has come out strongly to urge the government to show leadership by coming up with strategic solutions, rather than just spending money and cutting interest rates, to steer the country safely through the global economic crisis.

CIMB group chief executive Datuk Seri Nazir Razak, who is also the youngest son of Tun Abdul Razak, the architect of the New Economic Policy (NEP), listed five strategic initiatives that should be undertaken, including a review of the NEP.

“Review how the NEP retards national unity, investments and economic efficiency and develop a new, more relevant framework for economic policy-making,” he said.

Speaking after CIMB’s EGM yesterday, Nazir said: “The Malaysian government must show economic leadership beyond just orthodox fiscal stimulus and monetary measures, as major global economic dislocations and enforced reconstruction present not only severe challenges but also tremendous opportunities.”

“We are spending too much time talking about the size of the second stimulus cheque. I think we are missing the point if we are just concentrating on writing bigger cheques. It is good if in this environment the government comes up with a fairly comprehensive strategic plan as well as a stimulus package. In the context of stimulus package, I think there are key strategic long-term initiatives that we should embrace,” he said.

Aside from the overhauling of the NEP, Nazir also proposed:

1. Leveraging on the Middle East, China and India (MCI) as there will be an accelerated shift in economic power to these countries;

2. Encouraging a cooperative spirit among the academia, business and the civil service (ABC) to develop and execute national development plans;

3. Stimulating the acquisition of brands and distribution by developing a clear framework of incentives and co-investment opportunities abroad that can fill traditional gaps in the branding and distribution of Malaysian products and services; and

4. Attracting foreign talent to work in Malaysia, particularly to fill gaps in the education sector in the teaching of English and Mandarin.

On the NEP, Nazir said: “I have talked about this before. The NEP is almost 40 years old. It was meant to be only for 20 years. I think it’s important that it is reviewed. I don’t want to prejudge it. It is an important step for the nation. I think there should be a platform for Malaysia’s best and brightest to debate and arrive at a new framework”.

“Obviously, it doesn’t take much genius to look at some of the present policies arising from the NEP that are undermining national unity and also investment,” he added.

The NEP, aimed at restructuring the socio-economic landscape of the country by giving preferential treatment in certain areas of business and education to bumiputeras, was launched in 1971 by the government which was then led by Nazir’s father.

Nazir reckons that in the current crisis, there is a scarcity of investment, and countries need to go out and attract investors. “In that context, the bargaining hand has shifted decisively to the hand of the investor as opposed to the investee. Countries need to do whatever they can to attract investments,” he said.

He added that while fiscal and monetary stimulus would provide a temporary boost to the economy, Malaysia needs a strategic and proactive leadership to advance the country’s relative economic position in the new world order that will emerge from this crisis.

“I’m just urging that we take a more strategic perspective in terms of the leadership that the government can provide in this environment... not just monetary and fiscal but to actually deal with some of the long-term strategic issues which on hindsight later, could really be a turning point for Malaysia,” he said.

“Malaysia is in a good position — strong national resources, strong reserve, strong financial system, etc… but tactically, I think it’s important to understand the global dynamics... it’s a seismic shift, and Malaysia must be well positioned,” Nazir noted.