Archive for January 19th, 2012

Early polls better for economy, says MIER

By Yow Hong Chieh
The Malaysian Insider
Jan 19, 2012

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 19 — It would be better for the government to hold the general election as soon as possible since lingering uncertainty over the nation’s political future will hurt the economy, the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (MIER) said today.

MIER executive director Dr Zakariah Abdul Rashid said private investors were currently holding back investments on concerns that government policies will change should the incumbent Barisan Nasional (BN) fail to hold on to power.

He said private investment was the key component to propping up the economy this year as external demand slows, and urged the government to call for early polls to dispel investors’ wait-and-see attitude.

“If you ask me as an economist, I would rather see the problem solved once and for all. The earlier they settle the political problem, the better, so we can focus on the economy.

“Right now everything is still hanging. People are postponing because of the election so if they settle it once and for all and immediately, it would be better,” he told reporters here after presenting MIER’s economic outlook for 2011 and 2012. Read the rest of this entry »


Malaysia 2012 Growth to Miss Official Target, Institute Says

By Chong Pooi Koon
January 19, 2012

Jan. 19 (Bloomberg) — Malaysia’s growth will probably miss the government’s forecast this year amid the faltering global economy, according to the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research.

Southeast Asia’s third-largest economy will expand 3.7 percent in 2012, the partly-government funded institute said in a statement in Kuala Lumpur today, cutting its earlier estimate of 5 percent gross domestic product expansion. This is below the 5 percent to 6 percent government forecast in its Oct. 7 budget statement.

“Economic growth will likely get bumpier in the months ahead,” the institute said in the report. “Growth in the last quarter of 2011 is expected to be much lower on account of external developments. Latest monthly economic indicators are already suggesting that.”

The World Bank said yesterday developing growth in Asia- Pacific economies will slow for a second straight year on Europe’s debt crisis and weaker global trade. Malaysia likely expanded 4.9 percent in 2011, the institute said, missing the government’s growth forecast of as much as 5.5 percent. Read the rest of this entry »


‘Anxieties engulfing BN camp’

Mohd Ariff Sabri Aziz | January 19, 2012
The Malaysian Insider

Gemas, now infamous for the National Feedlot Centre and the double tracking railway project scandals, is poised to be the epicentre of another political tsunami.


Usually those who are pressing for an early election are those from within Umno itself and who think they will contest as candidates replacing the incumbents.

In Umno replacing incumbents is not difficult – just mobilize a few dissenting and envious voices to create the necessary ‘public’ opinion.

Elevate personal anecdotes and personal sob and frustrated stories and exploit those as generalizations.

Then package all the lies and present it to a nervous and insecure Umno division head.

Never mind if he was the Deputy Prime Minister then and now Prime Minister.

I was in Gemas for the Rapat Rakyat programme on Jan 15. Anwar Ibrahim was there.

I would estimate the crowd to have been around 10,000 people. The local guy standing next to me in the crowd confided that he had never seen such a big crowd before attending a political gathering. And he’s been staying in Gemas since the 60s.

Umno will of course trivialize this observation by saying the opposition has always attracted large crowds to their rallies. But in the end, the Barisan Nasional will win. Read the rest of this entry »


Salient points – 1Care


  1. The government plans to introduce a new healthcare system called 1-Care. It includes an insurance system to fund for healthcare.

  2. The National Healthcare Financing Authority will be in charge of 1Care – and it is likely to be turned into a GLC.

  3. Based on available information, every household will be made to pay up to 9.4% of gross household income for social health insurance. The payers will be the individual, the employer and the government via taxes, exact proportion still being worked out)

  4. There shall be no choice. Everyone has to pay. There is no opting out. We have to pay upfront. It will no longer be fee-for-service; it is fee-before- service.

  5. There has been no information on exactly how this payment will have to be made or how the government will collect from self-employed people.
      Read the rest of this entry »


The last days of Umno are beginning

By Dr Chen Man Hin, DAP life advisor

UMNO shows no signs of genuine reforms despite claims by PM Najib that UMNO is on the reform road as shown by the verdict of freedom for Anwar over the Sodomy 2 conspiracy. If there are no signs of reforms than UMNO will collapse in time, similar to what happened to the Soviet Union which collapsed in 1990.

Like Najib, Mikail Gorbachev tried to save Russia with his policies of ‘glasnost and perestroika’ but these failed to save Soviet Russia, because he could not introduce democracy and economic restructuring as there was no policies or infrastructure to modernise Russia.

Najib is also claiming that he has great plans to reform the country, ever since he introduced his 1 Malaysia program. However, all he had to deliver are just promises. Nothing concrete he promised to cut down corruption, but every day corruption is the rule in government departments, judiciary and the police. Events have overtaken Najib and there is no way he could reverse the corruption cancer pervading the country.
Read the rest of this entry »


Najib should heed his own call “to make voice of moderation of louder” by declaring transformation of Utusan Malaysia into the Voice of Moderation

“Najib: Make voice of moderation louder” – this is yesterday’s front-page headline of UMNO-owned New Straits Times reporting on the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak opening speech of the inaugural International Conference on Global Movement of Moderates on Tuesday.

Najib should heed his own call “to make voice of moderation louder” by declaring the transformation of the UMNO-owned Utusan Malaysia into the Voice of Reason and Moderation, ceasing henceforth to be the Voice of Enmity, Malice, Unreason and Extremism which had caused the degeneration of Najib’s 33 months as Prime Minister into the country’s most divisive, divided and polarized times both in racial and religious terms as compared to the first 33 months of the country’s first five Prime Ministers – Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein Onn, Tun Mahathir and Tun Abdullah.

If Najib is not prepared to make his “voice of moderation louder” and make a commitment to transform Utusan Malaysia from being the Voice of Extremism to become the Voice of Moderation, then Malaysians are entitled to ask what is the real purpose of the International Conference on Global Movement of Moderates which would have cost the government a fortune to host.

Najib would be guilty of not complying with his own prescription to the International Conference, i.e. that it is time for the masses to stand up and say to the extremists “with a single breath a firm and resounding no” – reducing the whole conference into an international joke and a farce! Read the rest of this entry »