The 11th Malaysia Plan is not rooted in reality, is not transparent and is far from being a game changer

Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, MP for Serdang, on the 21st of May, 2015

I am completely underwhelmed by the recently tabled 11th Malaysia Plan. I was expecting a document that would chart a new course to the status of a developed nation and beyond. What was tabled was a document that is divorced from current political and economic reality, is totally not transparent and is far from being a game changer.

One of the key economic challenges facing the country in 2015 and 2016 is the impact of low oil and gas prices on public finances. The unexpected and rapid fall in the price of oil to below US$40 per barrel at the end of 2014 forced the Prime Minister to announce some expenditure revisions at the beginning of the year. With the expectation of oil prices hovering below US$100 per barrel and low gas prices as a result of the increased production of shale gas in the United States, the revenue which the government derives from oil related sources – the petroleum tax, the income tax and the special dividend from Petronas – is expected to take a significant hit. Without a significant revision of long term government spending and without an increase in the recently introduced Goods and Service Tax (GST), I don’t see how the government can realistically expect to eradicate the budget deficit and the government debt to GDP ratio to below 45% by 2020.

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Wish list for the 11th Malaysia Plan

Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, MP for Serdang, on the 20th of May, 2015

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak will unveil the 11th Malaysia Plan (2016 to 2020) tomorrow in parliament. This will be the Malaysia Plan that will take us to a developed nation status by 2020. Expectations therefore are very high that this plan will not only chart the course for us to achieve a developed nation status but to show the way forward thereafter.

Below is my wishlist for what I hope will be covered in the 11th Malaysia Plan. Unfortunately, despite the importance of this plan, none of the opposition parties and members of parliament were consulted during the preparation of this plan even though we represent 52% of the voters in the country.

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