ACCCIM President Speeches

27 Jan 2011

Seminar on “How You Can Participate and Benefit from the Economic Transformation

Seminar on “How You Can Participate and Benefit from the

Economic Transformation Programme”

(21-5-2011, Seng Peng Hall, Wisma Chinese Chamber, Kuala Lumpur)

Y.B. Senator Dato’ Sri Idris Jala, Minister in the Prime Minister Department cum Chief Executive Officer of the Performance Management and Delivery Unit (PEMANDU),

Yang Berhormat Ministers and Deputy Ministers,

Yang Berbahagia Tan Sri-Tan Sri, Datuk-Datuk,

Distinguished Guests,

Members of the mass media,

Ladies and gentlemen,

Good Morning! Thank you for your presence at this seminar. On behalf of ACCCIM, I express my gratitude to Yang Berhormat Senator Dato’ Sri Idris Jala, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department cum Chief Executive Officer of the Performance Management and Delivery Unit (PEMANDU), for gracing this occasion and give a keynote address on Economic Transformation Programme.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

The seminar titled “How You Can Participate and Benefit from the Economic Transformation Programme” marks the determination of ACCCIM to work closely with the Government to promote the Economic Transformation Program for the realization of national effort to transform the Malaysian economy. We have assembled not only the active members of our Constituent Chambers throughout the country, but also prominent corporate and entrepreneurs, investors to participate in the deliberations at this Seminar. We seek to gather more feedbacks and comments for submission to government as inputs and for reference to ensure smooth implementation of the Economic Transformation Programme.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

Dato’ Sri Najib Bin Tun Abdul Razak, the Prime Minister of Malaysia launched the Economic Transformation Program (ETP) on 21st September 2010. ETP is the culmination of a substantial body of work to develop the Government’s economic agenda, builds upon the policy directions, strategies and programmes of the 10th Malaysia Plan. It is aligned with previous efforts such as the Government Transformation Programme (GTP) and “1Malaysia People First, Performance Now” as well as the groundwork of the New Economic Model. It is a comprehensive economic transformation plan to propel Malaysia’s economy into a high income economy. The ETP aims to almost triple the country’s Gross National Income (GNI) from RM660 billion (US$188 billion) in 2009 to close to RM1.7 trillion (US$523 billion) in 2020. This translates into an increase of GNI per capita from RM23,700 (US$6,700) to at least RM48,000 (US$15,000), meeting World Bank’s high-income nation benchmark. Malaysia is expected to grow its GNI at 6% between 2011 and 2020 to hit the target.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

In line with the Government’s massive efforts in economic reforms, the private sector, which is viewed as the prime engine for growth, must also take initiatives to transform itself into a more dynamic and competitive force. The various Chambers of Commerce which are the major representative organizations of the respective business community, must likewise formulate their own transformation programme in order to play a more proactive and effective role in national economic development. ACCCIM, as the principal Chamber of Commerce of the Malaysian Chinese business community, has undertaken some major reform initiatives to strengthen itself. These include the upgrading and modernizing of administrative premises and facilities, expansion of membership categories and the drive to harness the support of more successful entrepreneurs in all its undertakings.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

I wish to take this opportunity to call on the Government to adopt a more dynamic and bold approach to revitalize private investments, both foreign and domestic, as private investment has again been designated as the engine of growth for our national economy. First and foremost, it must be recognized that there is an urgent need to iron out current social and religious issues which threaten to upset political stability and social harmony in the country. Some irresponsible people are attempting to spark off religious and racial sentiments which could easily escalate to more drastic consequences to the detriment of social peace and harmony. We as a nation with strength in diversity have been a role model to many other nations. However, the strength is built on determined efforts by national leaders to harmonize divergent cultures and viewpoints of our multiracial population living under one roof. But every now and then, some dissidents would resort to unwarrantable actions that threaten to upset such formula of harmonization. Government’s wisdom and prompt remedial actions are vital to deal with and contain such situation.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

Secondly, although foreign investors have shown interest in our Economic Transformation Programme, they are highly concerned about the rising production cost. For example, the unit cost of our electricity is now in the medium range, but if we increase the rate as scheduled, we may end up to be the highest among regional countries. So is the price of our natural gas, compared to the other gas producing countries. We hope the Government will maintain the current rates of electricity and natural gas instead of increasing the rates as scheduled, so that we can maintain our competitive edge.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

Thirdly, in the spirit of 1Malaysia concept, domestic investors irrespective of race should be nurtured and given equal opportunities in all aspects of economic endeavours. Emphasis on ethnic equity participation should be minimized to remove constraints on entrepreneurship by free choice. Political will to accelerate national development towards Vision 2020 should not be impeded by racial considerations which more often than not result in dampening investment confidence.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

Malaysia need a complete, radical economic transformation, the days of depending on traditional growth engines are over. If we still continue on the current economic model, we risk getting stuck in middle-income trap and continue to lose out on talent necessary to support a high-income economy.

The Economic Transformation Programme is essentially the economic roadmap for Malaysia, one that is co-created by the private sector and the government. It marks a fundamental departure in the approach towards economic planning in order to achieve a developed nation status by 2020.

Thank you.


6th Floor, Wisma Chinese Chamber, 258, Jalan Ampang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


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