Answer to Question #174662 in History for qianhe

Question #174662

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According to the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office (Economics), YB Dato’ Sri Mustapa Mohamed, the 12 Malaysia Plan (12MP) may need to be “relooked” as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Does this mean a part or most of the upcoming plan for Malaysia’s next economic growth and development has to be changed? In your opinion, how much change is required if what the minister said comes true? Discuss with your group members about the possible changes that may come. Propose some changes that you would like to see if given the chance to address the parliament regarding the 12MP.

Use the following link to read up about the 12MP to get an idea about what is in store for our country’s future:

Expert's answer

Yes, most of the upcoming plan for Malaysia’s next economic growth and development has to be changed. Necessary steps will need to be taken to prepare the economy for operations under a new normal. This means restoring Malaysia’s fiscal buffers in readiness for the next crisis. COVID-19 caught Malaysia off guard with limited budgetary space to respond with direct fiscal injections, so as the economy recovers reforms will need to be taken to boost tax revenues including finding new sources of revenue that are more progressive. A key focus also must be on up-skilling and retraining the workforce for a new economy, as well as accelerating the digital agenda and bridging the digital divide. Even before the crisis, there was a growing realization that Malaysia needs to shift its competitive approach towards attracting higher-quality investments, a challenge which is even more critical to address now. 

Malaysia should look further ahead, and start to adopt reforms to help propel the country to the next level of its development journey in the years ahead. Work that the World Bank has carried out suggests that while Malaysia is expected to reach high-income status in the coming years, there are key gaps in the policy framework that are holding the country back from achieving its full potential. These gaps are even more costly during a crisis. There is need to carefully design and implement policies that would help to boost female labor force participation, improve the quality of human capital, boost competitiveness, create quality jobs, modernize institutions and promote inclusion through a stronger social protection framework that is fitting for Malaysia’s aspirations as a high-income and developed economy. 

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