GDP growth is not considered successful: Azmin

KUALA LUMPUR: The country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth alone cannot be considered successful unless it is translated into real benefits for the people, said Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali.

He added the real economic growth should enhance the purchasing power of the people, while tackling the disparity of growth across the states and income inequalities (B40 income group), high youth unemployment and the rising cost of living.

“Other pressing concerns include addressing outstanding structural challenges, such as raising labour productivity, ensuring quality investment and innovation and pushing industries to move up the value chain, he said at Khazanah Megatrend Forum 2018, here, today.

Mohamed Azmin said discussions on the GDP benefits was concluded at the 24th Ministerial Meeting of the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) last week.

Mohamed Azmin said Malaysia should also encourage the long-term foreign direct investments (FDIs) in greenfield investments which would create jobs, boot purchasing power and help create better economic ecosystem.

“Economic growth will also be driven by high-tech sectors, underlining the potential of the digital economy in ensuring Malaysia’s transition to a high-income and developed economy,” he said.

Collaboration between public and private sectors are essential to ensure quality investments and innovations, Mohamed Azmin said.

“The government remains firm continuing to grow and break out of the middle-income trap to become an advanced high-income economy, which requires a different economic logic for Malaysia,” he said.

Mohamed Azmin said Malaysia needs a focused shift towards new industries and adapt to the global technology landscape to increase the country’s economic productivity.

As of 2017, the country’s GDP per capita as measured in terms of nominal US dollar has fallen to 9,944 from a peak of 11,182 in 2014.

Mohamed Azmin said firms should also need to move away from being too narrowly focused on chasing short-term profits, as it will hamper long-term sustainability and profitability.

“We must pursue a balanced development path, with policies that enhance inclusion, integrity and sustainability as well delivering economic growth,” he said.

On the mid-term review of the 11th Malaysia Plan, Mohamed Azmin said the government will have a media session with editors next week.

“We will introduce some new initiatives on how do we tackle the new challenges that we are facing now. Progressive socio-economic policies will also be introduced to complement current institutional reforms,” he said, adding that details will be shared next week.

Source: NST