By Pervez Bari, TwoCircles.net
Bhopal: Anwar Ibrahim, former Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia and current advisor to Parti KeADILan Rakyat, (PKR), has in a statement said that KeADILan’s economic agenda received a resounding mandate on March 8th when Malaysians went to the polls and quadrupled the number of seats held by the opposition in Parliament, awarding us with 50 per cent of the seats in West Malaysia.
Ibrahim in the statement issued from Petaling Jaya in Malaysia and circulated through e-mail proclaimed:” After a decade of economic mismanagement, unchecked inflation in recent years and lagging competitiveness vis-a-vis Malaysia’s neighbours, we are confident that under our leadership and working closely with our partners, we will begin to implement policies to ensure a stronger and more vibrant economy in Malaysia”.
The statement said:” Looking to the future, the coalition, using its control of five key states, Selangor, Perak, Penang, Kedah and Kelantan, will implement business-friendly, free-market policies to stimulate growth, attract foreign investment and promote greater accountability and transparency in business dealings”.
Ibrahim said that one of our priorities in the upcoming weeks will be to initiate dialogues with the foreign investment community already present in Selangor, Perak, Penang, Kedah and Kelantan to ensure investor confidence remains strong during the transition period and also to identify areas of concern that our new governments will address in enhancing and improving their operations and performance in Malaysia.
“Our no-tolerance policy on corruption will have a major impact in reducing transaction costs and building confidence in small and medium enterprise. We also plan to divorce government employees from doing business with the government thereby reducing incentives for cronyism and insider deals which are plaguing the current administration”, the statement stated.
Ibrahim stated that the Malaysian Economic Agenda, which was a cornerstone of KeADILan’s election promises, can be implemented at the state level to reduce race-based affirmative action policies and begin to implement a more competitive, merit based system. This will immediately increase foreign investment, improve the state’s tax revenue and begin to promote more equity and income parity. Furthermore we will honour our promise to protect the marginalized from each ethnic community.
“The unexpected margin of our victory caught the nation and the region by surprise. A short term adjustment in the KLSE and weakening of the Ringgit is expected but will not persist unless Barisan Nasional chooses to pursue a regressive policy of punishment, and withholds its commitments for development allocations to the now opposition controlled states. We would warn Barisan Nasional however, that doing so will further alienate its position with the people”, Ibrahim warned. ([email protected])