Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Who Says Malays Can't Compete?

The truth cannot be better illustrated by the results of the open tender processes which has been implemented in Penang for the state owned agencies.
Some 70 per cent of two state firm’s open tenders have been won by Malay contractors, showing the community to be as competitive as others... Malay contractors won 16 out of 23 tender awards, or 70 per cent, from the Penang Development Corporation(PDC) and 44 out of 66 or 67 per cent of contracts issued by the Perbadanan Bekalan Air Pulau Pinang(PBAPP) in open tenders since Pakatan Rakyat took over Penang in March 2008.

“The performance by Malay contractors in an open tender system with non-Malays proves that Malay contractors can compete with others and win tender awards on their own merit,” [Lim Guan Eng] said in a statement...
And the conclusions are clear as day. Malays can compete under an open tender system and they have been winning contracts, despite so-called criticisms that Penang has "marginalised" the Malays.

What the Penang government has marginalised are not Malay contractors. Instead we have marginalised the crony-based contractors who are unable to compete and relies instead on political cables to secure jobs with the Government. These crony-based contractors will either be unable to competently deliver the goods or, will as per Malaysian culture, sub-contract these jobs to other parties, be they Malay or non-Malay contractors.

What we have in effect done is to cut out the middlemen "contractors" whose only role is to skim off easy profits from the contracts awarded and leave the scraps for other honest contractors to carry out the actual works. In such a system, it'll also encourage corruption between the middlemen and the government contracting agencies.

And the result?

The Penang state government has been able to turn a projected deficit of RM35 million in 2008 budget to a record surplus of RM88 million. And in 2009, a projected deficit of RM40 million has been turned around to record a surplus of RM77 million.

The proof is in the pudding.
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