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Bangsa Malaysia Berikan pendapat anda bagi mewujudkan BANGSA MALAYSIA!

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  #11  
Old 12-12-2009, 01:01 PM
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Malaysia an 'oil cursed' country

Dec 12, 09 10:58am

Former finance minister Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah did not mince his words in a stinging speech at the Young Corporate Malaysians Summit today when he described Malaysia as an “oil cursed” country.

“When I started Petronas in 1974, I did not realise I would see the day when I would wish we had not uncovered this bounty,” lamented Razaleigh.

“The oil that was meant to spur our transition to a more humane, educated society has instead become a narcotic that provides economic quick fixes and hollow symbols such as the Petronas Towers.”

Razaleigh, once an Umno vice-president who almost dislodged then party leader Dr Mahathir Mohamad more than 20 years ago, was one of the architects in establishing state-owned oil company Petronas in the 70s.

According to the veteran Umno leader, Malaysia is now caught in a middle-income trap, “stuck in the pattern of easy growth from low-value-added manufacturing and component assembly and unable to make the leap to a knowledge-intensive economy”.

He said the original intention of Malaysia's “modest quantity of oil reserves” was to help the country make the leap from an economy based on commodities and low-cost assembly to a more diverse economy based on high income jobs.

“We saw our oil reserves as an unearned bounty that would provide the money for modernisation and technology.”

However, the billions of ringgit earned from oil exports over the past three decades have been squandered by the government.

“Our oil receipts, instead of being applied in the manner we planned upon the formation of Petronas, that is, according to its original developmental purpose, became a fund for the whims and fancy of whoever ran the country, without any accountability,” he told the 300-strong audience at the first summit of the Young Corporate Malaysians held in Menara Integriti, Kuala Lumpur.

Our oil wealth gone

A recently launched book, 'Malaysian Maverick: Mahathir Mohamad in Turbulent Times', has estimated that about RM100 billion have been wasted on financial scandals during Mahathir's 22-year rule.

Author Barry Wain, who is a former editor of the Asian Wall Street Journal, writes that most of the scams, which included a government attempt to manipulate the international tin price and gambling by Bank Negara on global currency markets, occurred in the go-go years of the 1980s.

However, some analysts have put the figure even higher.

Time magazine quoted Daniel Lian, a Southeast Asia economist at Morgan Stanley in Singapore, saying that the country might have lost “as much as US$100 billion” (RM340 billion) during the Mahathir years.

Razaleigh argued that Malaysia's oil wealth has been squandered and used “to bail out failing companies, buy arms, build grandiose cities amidst cleared palm oil estates”.

“Instead of helping eradicate poverty in the poorest states, our oil wealth came to be channeled into our political and politically-linked class,” he added.

“Instead of being the patrimony of all Malaysians, and for our children, it is used as a giant slush fund that has propped up authoritarian rule, eroded constitutional democracy and corrupted our entire political and business elite.”

Petronas has contributed 40 percent of the national budget over the years but such a great reliance on oil income is getting untenable.

The government will in the coming months seek to broaden the tax base by introducing a goods and services tax (GST) where all Malaysians are required to pay an additional tax on top of income tax.
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  #12  
Old 12-12-2009, 01:02 PM
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'Our oil wealth squandered'
Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah
Dec 12, 09
11:04am

The following is the speech given by former finance minister and Umno vice-president Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah at the one-day Young Corporate Malaysians Summit this morning.

In a speech I made in April this year, I spoke of where we stand in our developmental path and what I felt we must do to move forward.

I need to revisit that argument in order to develop it further.

We are stagnating. The signs of a low-growth economy are all around us. Wages are stagnant and the cost of living is rising.

We have not made much progress in becoming a knowledge and services based economy.

According to the World Bank, Malaysia's share of GDP contributed by services was 46.2 percent in 1987. Ten years later, that share had grown by a mere 0.2 percent.

Between 1994 and 2007, real wages grew by 2.6 percent in the domestic sector and by 2.8 percent in the export sector, which is to say, they were flat over that 13-year period.

Meanwhile, our talent scenario is an example of perverse selection at its most ruinous. We are failing to retain our own young talent, people like yourselves, let alone attract international talent to relocate here, while we have had a massive influx of unskilled foreign labour. They now make up 30 to 40 percent of our workforce.

Alone in East Asia, the number of expatriate professionals here has decreased. Alone in East Asia, private sector wage increases follow government sector increases, instead of the other way around. We are losing doctors and scientists and have become Southeast Asia's haven for low-cost labour.

I said that we are in a middle-income trap, stuck in the pattern of easy growth from low-value-added manufacturing and component assembly and unable to make the leap to a knowledge-intensive economy.

Regional competitors with larger, cheaper - and dare I say - hungrier labour forces have emerged. China and India have risen as both lower cost and higher technology producers, and with giant domestic markets.

The manufacturing sector which propelled the growth we enjoyed in the 90s is being hollowed out. There is no going back, there is no staying where we are, and we do not have a map for the way forward.

I am glad that the characterisation of Malaysia as being in a 'middle-income-trap' has been taken up by the government, and that the need for an economic story, or strategy, for Malaysia is now recognised.

We stand in particular need of such a model because we are a smallish economy. We cannot be good at everything, and we don't have to be.

We need only make some reasonable bets in identifying and developing a focused set of growth drivers. It is not difficult to see what the elements of such a growth strategy might be. Whatever we come up with should build on our natural strengths, and our strengths include the following:

We are located at the crossroads of Asia, geographically and culturally, sitting alongside the most important oil route in the world.

We have large Muslim, Chinese and Indian populations that connect us to the three fastest growing places in the world today.

We have some of the largest and oldest rainforests in the world, a treasure house of bio-diversity when the greatest threat facing mankind as a whole now is ecological destruction, and the greatest technological advances are likely to come from bioscience.

We have the English language, a common law system, parliamentary democracy,good schools,an independent civil service and good infrastructure.

These advantages, however, are declining. Our cultural diversity is in danger of coming apart in bigotry, our rainforests are being logged out and planted over, our social and political institutions are decaying.

I have spoken at length on different occasions about the causes and consequences of institutional decline.The decline in our society and indeed in our natural environment, originates in a decline in our basic institutions.

The link between these is corruption.The destruction of our ecosystem for example, is made possible by corrupt officials and business people.The uncontrolled influx of unskilled labour is a direct result of corruption.

These are problems we need to be aware of before we speak glibly about coming up with new strategies and new economic models. We need to understand where we are, and how we have gone wrong, before we can set things right.

You are young, well-educated Malaysians. Many among you have left for other shores. Record numbers of Malaysians, of all races, work abroad or have emigrated. Among these are some of our best people.They sense the stagnation I described.

There is a certain lack of energy, ingenuity and “hunger” in the climate of this country that young people are most sensitive to. In the globalised job market, young people instinctively leave the less simulating and creative environments for those that have a spark to them.

How did we lose our spark as a nation?

We have a political economy marked by dependence on easy options and easy wealth. Like personal dependencies,these bad habits provide temporary comfort but discourage the growth of creativity and resilience.

I mentioned our dependence on low-cost foreign labour.

The other dependence is something I played a part in making possible.This is a story I want to leave you with to ponder in your deliberations today.

Once a blessing, now a curse

Our nation is blessed with a modest quantity of oil reserves. As a young nation coming to terms with this natural bounty in the early 70s, our primary thought was to conserve that oil.

That is why, when Petronas was formed, we instituted the Petroleum Development Council. Its function was to advise the prime minister on how to conserve that oil and use it judiciously for national development. We knew our reserves would not last long.

We saw our oil reserves as an unearned bounty that would provide the money for modernisation and technology. We saw our oil within a developmental perspective. Our struggle then, was to make the leap from an economy based on commodities and low-cost assembly and manufacturing to a more diverse, economy based on high income jobs.

Aware that we had an insufficient tax base to make the capital investments needed to make the leap, we planned to apply oil royalties to what you would call today strategic investments in human capital.

Whatever money left after making cash payments, allocations for development funds, etc, was to be placed in a Heritage Fund for the future.The Heritage Fund was for education and social enrichment.

In working out the distribution of oil between the states, who had sovereign rights over it, and the federal government, we were guided by concerns for equity between all Malaysians, a concern to develop the poorer states (who also happened to be the oil rich states) and a concern for inter-generational equity.That oil was for special development purposes and it was not just meant for our generation.

Sabah and Sarawak joined Malaya to form Malaysia because of the promise of development funds. Yet today, despite being their massive resources, they are some of our poorest states.

Instead of being our ace up the sleeve, however, our oil wealth became in effect a swag of money used to fund the government's operational expenditure, to bail out failing companies, buy arms, build grandiose cities amidst cleared palm oil estates.

Instead of helping eradicate poverty in the poorest states, our oil wealth came to be channeled into the overseas bank accounts of our political and politically-linked class.

Instead of being the patrimony of all Malaysians, and for our children, it is used as a giant slush fund that has propped up authoritarian rule, eroded constitutional democracy and corrupted our entire political and business elite.

Our oil receipts, instead of being applied in the manner we planned upon the formation of Petronas, that is, according to its original developmental purpose, became a fund for the whims and fancy of whoever ran the country, without any accountability.

The oil that was meant to spur our transition to a more humane, educated society has instead become a narcotic that provides economic quick fixes and hollow symbols such as the Petronas towers.

Our oil wealth was meant to help us foster Malaysians capable of building the Twin Towers than hire foreigners to build them, a practice in which we preceded Dubai. I would rather have good government than grand government buildings filled with a demoralised civil service.

It is no wonder that we are no longer productive, no longer using our ingenuity to devise ways to improve ourselves and leap forward.

Malaysia is now an “oil cursed” country. We managed to arrive at this despite not having a lot of oil.

When I started Petronas in 1974, I did not realise I would see the day when I would wish we had not uncovered this bounty.

Public assets 'looted'

The story I have told is a reminder of the scale of the challenge of development. My generation of young people faced this challenge in the 60s and 70s. You face it now.The story tells us that development is about far more than picking strategies out of a box.

You have kindly invited me to address a seminar on strategies for reinventing and liberalising Malaysia's economy. But the story of our squandered oil wealth reminds us that it was not for want of resources or strategies that we floundered.

Our failure has been political and moral. We have allowed greed and resentment to drive our politics and looked the other way or even gone along while public assets have been stolen in broad daylight.

I encourage you to take up the cause of national development with the ingenuity that earlier generations of Malaysians brought to this task, but the beginning of our journey must be a return to the basics of public life: the rule of law, honesty, truth-telling and the keeping of promises.

The Malaysia we need to recover is one that was founded on laws and led with integrity. With the hindsight of history we know such things are fragile and can be overturned in one generation, forgotten the next.

Without a living foundation in the basics you might sense an air of unreality around our talk of reinventing ourselves, coming up with “a new economic model” and liberalising our economy.

So before we can reinvent ourselves, we need to reclaim our nation. That larger community, bound by laws, democratic and constitutional, is the context of economic progress, it is the context in which young people find hope, think generous thoughts and create tomorrow.
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  #13  
Old 12-12-2009, 05:33 PM
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Eradicating corruption would be a start but I doubt 'Dear Prime Minister' would know what to do. The country would end up without a government because the whole hirearchy lives off the same fodder ie, nepotism.
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  #14  
Old 12-12-2009, 08:01 PM
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friday, december 11, 2009
Petronas Profit Dips, Rakyat To Bear The Burden
Tony Pua

As Petronas profits dip 50.7%, will the Rakyat will have to pay for the Government's past excesses?

Petronas’ net profit before tax for April-September 2009 stood at RM31.2 billion versus RM63.3 billion in the same period a year ago, or a sharp decline of 50.7%. At the same time, revenues dropped 37.5 per cent to RM98.2 billion from RM157.2 billion ringgit.

The drop in profits is largely due to the decline in crude oil price during the period ranged between a low of US$50 in April to a high of US$75 achieved in August, averaging in the region of US$67. With the global crude oil price languishing around US$75 since September, it does not appear that the October 2009 to March 2010 period will improve significantly.

Therefore, the estimated annual profit expected from Petronas for financial year ending March 2010 will be in the region of RM 65 billion as compared to RM89 billion, or an overall decline of RM24 billion.

As a result, the sharp drop in Petronas profits will add further pressure onto the Government's revenue source for the 2010 financial budget as it's original estimates of RM56 billion collection from the petroleum sector may not materialise in full. If the Government is unable to either find additional revenue or reduce its expenditure, then the budget deficit for 2010 is expected to increase significantly above the projected 5.6%.

It is hence disappointing that despite the Government having collected bumper revenues amounting to RM217 billion from Petronas over the past 4 years (2006-2009) as a direct result of escalating oil prices, it did not have the simple foresight of putting aside any of these income for future use when the oil price declines. In fact, not only was every cent of the oil and gas windfall revenue over the past decade has been spent in full, the Government incurred additional debts on top.

As a result of the past excesses and wastages through irresponsible expenditure, corruption, incompetence and mismanagement, the Government is now caught with declining revenues and is finding it difficult to pay for its operational expenses, including servicing its rapidly increasing debt obligations.

In the light of the above, we call upon the Government not to take the easy way out to tax the rakyat more to make up for the revenue shortfalls by implementing measures such as the credit card tax, the real property gains tax and the proposed goods and services tax.

Instead, the Government to take this valuable crisis opportunity to restructure the large and bureaucratic Government machinery to be more lean and efficient. Before the Government even consider taxing the rakyat more, it should firstly implement fully transparent and accountable best practices for the implementation of Government procurement and projects.

In addition, the Government must also seek to implement additional measures to raise revenue from other sources which does not affect the livelihood of the masses, such as implementing an open auction system for the Approved Permits issued to import luxury foreign cars which can raise more than RM2 billion a year.
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Old 07-02-2010, 08:29 AM
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I accept with information:Time magazine quoted Daniel Lian, a Southeast Asia economist at Morgan Stanley in Singapore, saying that the country might have lost “as much as US$100 billion since the early 1980s to corruption”.
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Old 10-09-2010, 08:48 PM
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A new economic model, which is guided towards the competitiveness of Malaysia and its purpose is for high-income economy by 2020 is to reveal this month. NEAC President and Chief Financial planning group Amirsham Aziz has indicated that it is not easy to quickly create a model, Because the problems are complex and the Council wants to ensure that the proposals will take public scrutiny than expected.
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Old 25-09-2010, 07:15 PM
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wamly welcome

Sure all pro gamer are most welcome... if you can reach out to them it would be great!! Thanks a lot



Ya it will be great if they both get active on this forum...
and share their exp. with gaming...
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  #18  
Old 08-10-2010, 08:19 PM
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The long-term success of the nation's economy must prevail over short-term interests of a few protected groups.Other emerging economies have taken the lead when the policies of the island took place in Malaysia back.Without support domestic firms, foreigners find it viable to invest in Malaysia. However, local industries have clearly lost their momentum and competitiveness in the last decade.
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  #19  
Old 08-10-2010, 09:22 PM
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Politicians 'holidays' at taxpayers' expense.





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