PUTRAJAYA, May 9 (Bernama) — The government will introduce a new economic direction for the country to ensure that the people will enjoy shared prosperity, while resolving the current economic quagmire, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said.
The Prime Minister said the initiative will adopt the “Shared Properity” approach by increasing the people’s purchasing power and eliminating the income and wealth gap between classes, regions and extreme disparity in supply chain.
He said the “Shared Prosperity” approach is an effort to ensure that Malaysia continues its path of sustainable development in line with the equitable growth of each value chain, class, community and geography to create a sense of harmony and stability among the people by 2030.
“To achieve this goal, the government outlines at least seven strategic thrusts needed, among others, restructuring and improving the business ecosystem; generating new growth sectors; enhancing talent reformation and national resources; and improving labour market and employee income,” he said when delivering his inaugural speech in conjunction with the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government one-year anniversary here today.
Dr Mahathir said in addition, the government would also strengthen social well-being, build an inclusive region and raise social capital of the society.
Besides the seven strategic thrusts, the Prime Minister said the government has also identified other catalysts such as a progressive fiscal policy, a high level of governance and integrity, a desired outcome of education, a higher quality Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), and a competitive financial support capital.
He said the government will strive to ensure the effective delivery of government institutions, monetary stability, comprehensive and inclusive Big Data, and knowledgeable civil society to support the goals and programmes of Shared Prosperity to achieve the best possible success.
The Prime Minister said the country’s business and industry ecosystems need to be improved to remain relevant and meet the future economic requirements.
Hence, he said the use of technology and the latest and effective management of the fourth industrial revolution (IR 4.0), the adoption of a comprehensive digital economy, and the enhancement of the skills of high-value employees are essential to propel the nation’s economy to a higher level.
“In order to assail the nation’s economy to a higher level and remain relevant in the changing times, Malaysia should look into and pioneer the new growth sectors. We should not be trapped in the traditional sectors and the old way of working,” he said.
Dr Mahathir said thus, investment and capacity building in the new growth sectors is crucial in the radically changing world economy.
He asserted that Malaysia should no longer be a consumer country, instead it should become a country that produces more world-class products of its own.
In order to reform the talents and resources of the nation, he said capacity building and skill-enhancement programmes in the private and public sectors will be reviewed comprehensively to produce a competitive, productive and relevant workforce tailored to the needs of the industry, as well as the needs of today and the future.
He said the process of upgrading the capabilities and skills of Malaysian workers also requires radical changes to ensure that the nation could produce a more productive workforce that provides a high-income value.
“Our workers should earn higher income to ensure that they enjoy a better life. We will determine the policies and programmes that can provide workers with fairer income. Providing more comprehensive opportunities for local workers at all levels should be prioritised,” he said.
The Prime Minister said the country has the responsibility towards the less fortunate, marginalised and low-income group.
He said policies and programmes towards a more comprehensive social well-being should be strengthened based on the need-based principle of the economy as the country does not want any group to be left behind.
“However, these efforts do not mean that the nation will spoon-feed them, instead the nation will help them build their capabilities to pull them out of poverty and risky conditions,” he said.
The country’s economic development will be extended to several regions towards an inclusive and distributive economic development, he said, adding that the development of more comprehensive economic centres throughout the country needs to be undertaken to bridge the gaps between urban and rural areas, less developed and developed states, and the peninsula and Sabah and Sarawak.
To support economic development and growth, he said it calls for a mature, knowledgeable and hard-working community, as well unity among the people.
“Increasing social capital and building a strong social support structure are important to ensure that the country can develop rapidly,” he said.
For that, he said the national pride and patriotism of young people are also very important to ensure the future of a great nation.
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