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马来西亚在2022年或2023年将有可能面临预算赤字危机,而非零赤字

(2018年1月9日)行动党政治教育局副主任兼沙登区国会议员王建民博士的媒体声明

马来西亚2022年或2023将有可能面临预算赤字危机,而非零赤字

第二财政部长拿督斯里佐哈里最近承认,马来西亚到了2020年将无法实现平衡预算的目标。[1] 这番言论对于长期观察马来西亚经济预算的人士而言并无太大惊喜。尽管首相纳吉多次承诺,马来西亚将在2020年达到这个平衡预算的目标。

马来西亚的债息费用从2009年的142亿令吉增加至2018年的308亿令吉。债息费用所占预算的比例从2009年的9.1%也增加至2018年预计的13.2%。(请参阅下图1和2)

1: 2009年至2011年,中央政府根据各项目所产生的营运开销,包括债息费

2: 2016年至2018年,中央政府根据各项目所产生的营运开销,包括债息费

由于中央政府的债务成长远高于收入的成长,因此债息费用占预算的比例有所提高也不会令任何人感到意外。从2009年(纳吉在2008年9月成为财政部长)到2017年,中央政府的债务成长了89.7%,每年成长率为11.2%;反之,同一时期的中央收入的成长率为37.5%,每年成长率为4.7%(参阅表1和图3)。

1:2009年至2017年,中央债务对比中央收入的成长比率

3: 20092017年,中央债务对比中央收入的成长曲线

更令人担忧的是,由财政部100%所拥有的特殊用途工具所衍生的债息费用也由政府买单,但最终却被“隐藏”在政府预算案里。例如,根据2018年的财政预算案中,战略性行业的开销2017年的12.86亿令吉增加至2018年的37.48亿令吉。这包括支付给负责为捷运工程和泛婆罗洲高速大道融资的基建基金公司(Dana Infra)11亿令吉 。第二 财政部长在2017年11月29日也通过国会书面回复来核实这一点(附录1)。

此外,“其他款项”(Lain-Lain Bayaran Balik)也2017年的15.28亿令吉增加至2018年的42.36亿令吉。这笔款项的最大用途是为了私人融资计划(PFI)用途,总额为39.71亿令吉(参阅附录2)。

PFI实际上是由财政部100%拥有的特殊用途工具,如已累积近260亿[2]令吉债务的PFI建筑私人有限公司和发行100亿令吉债劵的BLT建筑私人有限公司。这些债劵是为政府支付建设警察宿舍的年度“租金”费用来进行融资。[3]

如果我们都将这些预算表外的债息费用都拿来加总的话(2018年约为50亿令吉),我国的总债息费用将是350亿令吉或刚达政府行政所规定的债息费用占总预算的15%。(参阅下图4)。

4: 2018年经济报告所给予债息费的定义 (第84页)

随着捷运2号线,3号线,轻快铁3号线和泛婆罗洲高速大道等项目的陆续推行,由财政部100%所拥有的特殊用途工具(SPV)所发行的债务总额也会继续增加,我们可以预计(隐藏和非隐藏式)总债息费用在未来十年将继续加速提高。中央政府2016年担保1873.2亿令吉的债务提高至2017年9月的2268.8亿令吉的债务,于此可见一斑。[4]

实际上,我并不反对所有为人民带来长期利益的发展开销。但是,通过将这些开销的债息费用“隐藏”在这些特殊用途工具之下,我们无意间默许其他部门(如首相署)所造成的浪费和腐败现象持续发生下去。对人民最不利的局面是,我们开始通过大砍高等教育机构和公立医院的拨款,以有能力负担和支付这些被“隐藏”的债息费用。

如果这种趋势继续演进的话,我认为即使到了2022年或者2023年,政府也不可能实现平衡赤字。事实上,随着我们的财政状况有下滑的迹象,因此我们的赤字危机更有可能进一步地恶化。

附录1:支付给2018战略领域单位的费用(37.48亿令吉)

附录2:其他偿还费用 42.36亿令吉)

[1] https://www.thestar.com.my/business/business-news/2018/01/05/fiscal-space-needed-to-balance-govt-finances-by-2022-or-2023/

[2] http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/putrajaya-confirms-pembinaan-pfi-debt-pile-near-rm27b

[3] https://www.marc.com.my/index.php/marc-rating-announcements/512-marc-affirms-its-aaais-rating-on-aman-sukuk-berhad-s-rm10-0-billion-islamic-mtn-programme-30102015

[4] http://www.theedgemarkets.com/article/malaysias-spiralling-debt-burden

Malaysia more likely to face a budget crisis than to balance the budget by 2022 or 2023

Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, Member of Parliament for Serdang and Assistant Political Education Director, on the 9th of January 2018

Malaysia more likely to face a budget crisis than to balance the budget by 2022 or 2023

The recent admission by the Second Minister of Finance Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani that the Malaysian government would not be able to achieve a zero budget deficit by 2020 should not come as a surprise among those who have been studying the Malaysian budget.[1] This is despite the many promises announced by Prime Minister Najib that Malaysia would reach this zero budget deficit by 2020.

Malaysia’s debt service charges increased from RM14.2 billion in 2009 to RM30.8 billion in 2018. The share of the budget to pay for debt service charges has increased from 9.1% in 2009 to 13.2% in 2018 (estimated). (See Figures 1 and 2 below)

Figure 1: Federal Government Operating Expenditure by Object including debt service charges (2009 to 2011)

Figure 2: Federal Government Operating Expenditure by Object including debt service charges (2016 to 2018)

This increase in the debt service charges as a % of the budget should not be surprising given that the growth in the federal debt is much higher than the increase in the federal revenue. From 2009 (Najib became Finance Minister in September 2008) to 2017, the federal debt grew by 89.7% or an annual growth rate of 11.2% compared to a 37.5% growth or an annual growth rate of 4.7% for the federal revenue during this period (see Table 1 and Figure 3 below).

Table 1: Growth in the Federal Debt versus Federal Revenue, 2009 to 2017

Figure 3: Growth in the Federal Debt versus Federal Revenue, 2009 to 2017

What should be MORE worrying is the fact that payments for debt service charges incurred by 100% owned Ministry of Finance (MoF) Special Purposes Vehicles are also being paid by the government but are being ‘hidden’ in other parts of the budget. For example, payments for strategic sectors have increased from RM1.286 billion in 2017 to RM3.748 billion in 2018 according to the 2018 budget estimates. Included in this payment is a RM1.1 billion payment to Dana Infra / Govco, which is the SPV in charge of issuing debt to finance the MRT lines and also the Pan Borneo Highway. This was verified in a written parliament to me by the Ministry of Finance II dated 29 November 2017 (Appendix 1).

In addition, other repayments (Lain-Lain Bayaran Balik) have also increased from RM1.528 billion in 2017 to RM4.236 billion in 2018. The biggest portion of this payment is for Private Finance Initiatives (PFIs) totalling RM3.971 billion (see Appendix 2).

PFIs are actually expenditure for development projects that are funded by 100% owned MOF SPVs such as Pembinaan PFI Sdn Bhd which has accumulated debt of approximately RM26 billion[1] and Pembinaan BLT Sdn Bhd which issued RM10 billion worth of bonds that were to be financed by yearly ‘rental’ payments by the government of Malaysia to fund the building of police quarters.[2]

If we add up these off-budget sheet debt service charges (approximately RM5 billion for 2018), the total debt service charge would be RM35 billion or approximately 15% of the total budget which is just at the threshold under the administrative fiscal rules. (See Figure 4 below)

Figure 4: Description of Debt Service Charges in the 2018 Economic Report (pg. 84)

As the amount of debt issued by 100% MOF owned SPVs continue to increase with projects such as the MRT Line 2 and Line 3, the LRT Line 3 and the Pan Borneo Highway, we can expect the total debt service charges (hidden and non-hidden) to continue to grow faster over the next decade. This can be partly seen in the 21% increase in the debt guaranteed by the federal government from RM187.32 billion at the end of 2016 to RM226.88 billion at the end of September 2017.[4]

I am not against development expenditure which brings long term benefits to the rakyat. But by ‘hiding’ the debt servicing obligations of such expenditure behind these SPVs, we are allowing wastage and corruption in other parts of the operating and development expenditure (under the Prime Minister’s Department, for example) to persist. What is worst for the rakyat is when funding to public higher education institutions and public hospitals are cut in order to pay for these ‘hidden’ debt servicing charges.

If this trend continues, I don’t believe that the government would be able to achieve a zero budget deficit even by 2022 or 2023. In fact, it is much more likely that we will have a budget crisis on our hands as our budget position worsens.

Appendix 1: Bayaran untuk Sektor Strategik 2018 (RM3.748 billion)

Appendix 2: Lain-Lain Bayaran Balik (RM4.236 billion)

[1] https://www.thestar.com.my/business/business-news/2018/01/05/fiscal-space-needed-to-balance-govt-finances-by-2022-or-2023/

[2] http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/putrajaya-confirms-pembinaan-pfi-debt-pile-near-rm27b

[3] https://www.marc.com.my/index.php/marc-rating-announcements/512-marc-affirms-its-aaais-rating-on-aman-sukuk-berhad-s-rm10-0-billion-islamic-mtn-programme-30102015

[4] http://www.theedgemarkets.com/article/malaysias-spiralling-debt-burden

选委会应该归零重划选区,以便增加雪州国席和减少雪州议席之间的选票不均问题

(2017年12月20日)行动党政治教育局副主任兼沙登区国会议员王建民博士的媒体声明

选委会应该归零重划选区,以便增加雪州国席和减少雪州议席之间的选票不均问题

随着上诉庭撤除暂缓执行令,意味着选委会能在雪州举行第一轮的听证会。与其重启听证会,选委会应重新划分选区,以减少雪州议席之间的选票不均问题和增加雪州国席。

按照2017年第二季度选名册,雪州选民多达233万人,为全国之最 。(参阅图表1)

1:西马半岛各州的总选民人数(2017年第二季度)

同时,雪州各个议席的选民,平均多达10万5937人,亦是全国最高。(参阅图表2)

2:西马半岛各州国会议席平均选民人数(2017年第二季度)

在雪州,选民人数超过10万的国会选区,共有12个。(参阅图表3)

3:雪州各国席的选民人数(2017年第二季度)

雪州最大国会选区加埔为例,当地共有16万4177名选民,比起拥有4万164名选民的最小国会选区沙白安南,选民相差4倍之多。

选委会建议的选区重划,根本与减低雪州这些不均等无关。我自身的选区沙登,将会易名为万宜,新选区可能会有超过16万5000选民

以雪州境内而言,这显然违反‘一人一票’原则,也是雪州政府入禀法庭,反对选区重划不公平的主因。

任谁都能看出这次的选区重划有多不公平。与其举行听证会,选委会应一切归零,重新开始划分选区,而这次要增加雪州的国会议席。

(我会在另一篇媒体声明继续探讨州议席的课题)