Malaysia to boost economic growth
MALAYSIA: Malaysia on Thursday unveiled a 69-billion-dollar
plan intended to spur growth and attract much-needed foreign investment
as it faces increasing competition from regional neighbours.
The country is aiming to become a high-income economy by 2020 rather
than continuing to rely on its low-cost structure to make it attractive.
The 2010-2015 Tenth Malaysia Plan is Prime Minister Najib Razak’s
first since taking office last year, where he also set new targets under
the five-year blueprint to raise growth and trim a ballooning fiscal
Malaysia is aiming for 6.0 percent growth this year but as the region
powers back to health, it is facing competition from Southeast Asian
neighbours such as Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam that erode Malaysia’s
“The global economic landscape today has changed significantly and
Malaysia can no longer depend on a low-cost structure to remain
competitive internationally,” Najib said in a speech in parliament.
“Globalisation, liberalisation and the emergence of countries such as
China, India, Brazil, Russia, the Middle East and countries in the
region have intensified the competition. The export-dependent country
forecast average annual economic growth of 6.0 percent over the five
years, and targeted to reduce its fiscal deficit from 5.3 percent of
gross domestic product in 2010 to 2.8 percent in 2015.
Malaysia’s budget deficit widened to 7.4 percent of GDP in 2009 after
the government introduced two stimulus packages worth 67 billion ringgit
last year to pump-prime the economy as the downturn dried up demand for
Under the five-year plan worth 230 billion ringgit (69 billion
dollars), Najib pledged the government would boost spending on
He said the government would partner private firms in 63 billion
ringgit of “high-impact” projects that include the construction of seven
highways and two coal-powered electricity plants.
Kuala Lumpur, Thursday, AFP