Saturday, October 02, 2010

ETP: Success or Failure Depends on Najib

ETP projects all in Idris’ ‘dream’, say analysts and politicians
By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal and Boo-Su Lyn October 01, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 1— Datuk Seri Idris Jala’s insistence that the Economic Transformation Programme’s (ETP) mega projects will spur growth towards Vision 2020 has not completely convinced analysts and politicians.

They are doubtful as to whether the government’s ETP, which promises a heavy commitment from the private sector, would be able to transform Malaysia towards a high-income economy by the year 2020.

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Surprisingly, DAP national publicity secretary Tony Pua praised Idris over his role in the ETP, saying the Cabinet minister had done his job.

“He is not your typical BN man where you are just looking at largesse,” Pua told The Malaysian Insider.

“Idris Jala has done his part, which was to find areas for Malaysia to grow. Now, it’s for the prime minister to commit to the necessary reforms to take the country forward and to achieve the goals stated in the ETP,” Pua said.

The Petaling Jaya Utara MP dismissed the need for the government to fill in the details of the ETP, but stressed instead that its main role was to explain why the private sector should invest in the planned projects.

“The ETP is not going to be detailed because we are not going to be a government-driven economy. The underlying question that needs to be addressed is really why should people invest,” said Pua.

He pointed out that Datuk Seri Najib Razak had to convince the private sector by addressing concerns on a lack of institutional reforms, perceived unfair treatment based on affirmative action policies, and a civil bloated service.

Pua, however, expressed doubt about Najib’s support of Idris’ various economic proposals such as the earlier Government Transformation Programme.

“From what I can tell he is not getting full support from the prime minister. The problem isn’t so much what the Idris team is doing, but the Cabinet as a whole led by the prime minister that is unwilling to take the proposals full-blown,” he said.

Currently in Malaysia, only 28 per cent of the total workforce is employed in the high-skill job bracket, reflecting the low level of educational attainment among a large segment of the workforce.
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