20 May 2015
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak will outline today a five-year development plan leading up to 2020, the date the country has set for achieving developed economy status, but that goal may prove elusive as political pressures crowd out reform.
Najib’s government faces its harshest test since coming to power in 2009, as Malaysia braces for a downgrade of its credit rating by Fitch and a once-stable political environment is shaken by allegations of state corruption and mismanagement.
When the prime minister reveals his plans to complete the final step towards Malaysia’s vision of being a high-income nation by the end of the decade, he may have to forgo some long-term growth targets to tackle pressing short-term concerns.
“There would be more popular measures introduced in this plan than the long-term transformative measures that would get us to the 2020 target,” said Oh Ei Sun, senior fellow at S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies.
“This is because the immediate political survival is more important for Najib, and for that he needs to improve his public image. Besides, Najib would have retired by 2020 so his bigger concern is the current political issues.”
IDSS / Online
Last updated on 18/11/2015