Tag Archives: William Pesek

WHY MALAYSIA IS NOT ASIA’S WEAKEST LINK

Ahhh… this Pesek again.

KLCC-3

Mr William Pesek is a Bloomberg View columnist based in Tokyo. He, as mentioned in his writing, unabashedly confessed to be one of the Anwar Ibrahim’s admirers.

That explained why he keeps questioning about the Opposition leader’s case in his articles without fail.

His assertion in his article ‘Is Malaysia Asia’s Weakest Link’ that “Malaysia is the riskiest country in Asia more so than India, Indonesia and Thailand” is worth studying. Is it true or is it fantasy?

In his article he wrote that Putrajaya’s one-party policy and its 40-year-old pro-Malay affirmative action programme will chip away the country’s competitiveness.

Never mind if Malaysia has been chalking up in global competitiveness rankings in the past few years. In IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2014, Malaysia is the 12th most competitive country in the world. ATC Kearney’s Washington DC ranked us at 15th in FDI Confidence Index.

These achievements have been reflected by the rising realised investment in Malaysia. Last year, total investment hit RM264.6 billion- a whopping 32% increase from 2010.

Malaysia's Realised Investment

Malaysia’s Realised Investment

Ironically, it was achieved in spite of the ’40-year-old-Malay-affirmative action programme’. How could this scheme, which supposedly disenfranchises Malaysia’s Chinese and Indian minorities could provide a competitive business environment for the private sector to thrive? Most importantly, not only we fared better than Indonesia or Thailand, we have ably overtaken developed economies such as Norway, South Korea and United Kingdom.

Pesek also criticised Malaysia for its high levels of public debt, rising external debt and shrinking current account surplus.

Admittedly Malaysia household debt is high at 87% of GDP. Is that worrying? It depends. While the household debt is high, our household asset has quadrupled. It has now stood at 322% of GDP. It means for every RM1 Malaysian borrow from the bank, they acquire asset worth RM4. [1]

In fact, Malaysia public debt is not hovering at all time high-as claimed by Pesek. In 1990, our public debt to GDP ratio stood at 81%. But today it is about 52.2% of GDP.

Pesek has pointed out Malaysia’s current-account surplus is dwindling, from 16 percent of GDP in 2008 to 3.7 percent last year. But again, he cherry-picked facts. He should mention most of the developed and developing economies have seen their current account decreased. Only the oil-rich countries like Kuwait, Brunei, UAE,Saudi and Qatar have the luxury to have 20-30% surplus. The rest? They have to stimulate the economy through spending.

Even so, our trade surpluses will help in improving current account balance. As for today, Malaysia has international reserves of RM427 billion. It is 1.3 times sufficient to pay our short term external debt.

Well, that is Malaysia. How about other Asia countries?

Indonesia’s deficit is worsening. After 14 years of surplus, the current-account balance swung to a deficit of 4.4%.. A coup-ridden Thailand is even worse. The last time Thailand had a coup, the stock market crashed. Singapore’s indebtedness has swelled to the most in Asia after China and India.

Against this backdrop, why Pesek believes Malaysia is Asia’s weakest link? Maybe it is safe for him to impute all kinds of mismanagement by the Malaysia Government. After all, he concluded that as Indians just elected the reform-minded Narendra Modi, Malaysia may send his darling to go back in jail as he believes Malaysia’s Prime Minister is clinging to power.

Very telling, indeed.

MatRodi

[1] As explained by @EkonomiUmno in twitter

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One Missing Jet, One Sunken Ferry, One Idiot

Media

Malaysia Airline is merely a third world country’s airline. Therefore it do not understand the concept of transparency, responsibility and even how to coordinate search and rescue operation.

So when MH370 disappeared, the Government of Malaysia chose to hide the real cause of the great tragedy, lied to the whole world and mislead the international media. Of course it was deliberately done in cohort with 26 other countries. Strangely for this incompetent country, it managed to put together one of the biggest international search efforts the world has ever seen. Some of them often, don’t even get along. This must have been some accidental and through a fluke by Malaysia.

That the MH370 tragedy is unprecedented in modern civil aviation history was overlooked or ignored. Could it be because the country is governed by a brown-skinned Malay Government which just cannot be smart and destined to fail? Or could it be that this is the country when dealing with Asian Financial Crisis in 1998 has thumbed its nose at the global superpower by refusing financial assistance? God knows.

The raw hatred for Malaysia’s handling in MH370 by some members of  international media is mind boggling. Nothing is right about MH370. The impunity with which international media is casting aspersions on the pilots is disturbing. Is there any highly publicised investigations into the pilots’ personal lives during Air France AF447 crashed?  The double standard must be due to MAS’ pilots are the potential terrorist thus it is acceptable for Capt Zaharie Ahmad Shah’s private life to be torn apart.

The maker of the plane, Boeing is not at fault. MAS is. Boeing’s aircraft was and will continue to be safe to use. That is why they had said practically nothing to explain why the aircraft can disappear in mid-air so completely.

Apparently after 60 days, Malaysia can only write a mere 5 pages report.  It is very lazy and unimaginative of the Government. A smart Government would fabricate information such as claims of sighted debris or the countless theories of the plane to ensure the MH370 tragedy rendered a thick report. 

Given such circumstances, the Prime Minister of Malaysia should resign so that the darling of the western media, Mr Opposition Leader can take over the country and solve the MH370 mystery in a split second. In fact the president of United States did the same thing when he struggled to handle  the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Did he?

Whatever, Malaysia must take heed of the advice by the impartial international media, a true preacher of press freedom which truly exercised its freedom by tapping the telephones of the leaders to run its story and accepted bribes to soften reports about all kinds of shenanigans by powerful people. 

Thank you Mr William Pesek-an award-winning Bloomberg journalist for giving top marks to South Korea for its handling of its ferry tragedy. We now know in order to get an A minus,we must modified the vehicle and overload it with passengers. When disaster happens, we send rescue boats only to pick up the crews and left students to die.  Special thanks to CNN too.

MatRodi

I wrote this article not because I expect any Western journalist to apologise. They will not change. I write simply to draw attention to the fact that they are not the impartial purveyor of truth that people assume them to be.

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