The BMCC together with the Chamber of Commerce & Industry France Malaysia (CCIFM) hosted our second Economic Outlook and Post Budget Conference. Themed “Shared Prosperity: Malaysia’s Economy Now and Future” the conference saw YB Tony Pua, the Political Secretary to the Minister of Finance return once more to speak to our members about the ideas and challenges that had gone into the Malaysian Budget 2020.
Reiterating the Finance Minister’s speech during the Budget announcement on 11th November, Tony Pua referenced the economic glory years of Malaysia in the late 1980s and early 90s where FDI poured in, and how we can return to an approximation of that period of financial prosperity. “As long as we can attract sufficient quality investments, giving us the option choose the type of investments we want to come into Malaysia, we will be able to produce the capacity to change our economic growth trajectory going forward” YB Tony said. Labour intensive industries and technology sectors were some of the inward investments exemplified that Malaysia would be keen to welcome.
Tony Pua touched on the measures that went into the Budget to ensure several large issues were addressed, such as creating more jobs opportunities and incentives for unemployed graduates, as well as incentivising preferences to work with local labour instead of foreign. One of his underlying messages in his speech was that the global economy will always turn around, and that it will be a crucial 2-3 years ahead for Malaysia to start attracting new kinds of foreign investment and to rebuild capacity to be ready for the new global supply chain. “We have managed to create a big theme around the Budget 2020 that we hope, given the current economic challenges and the opportunities that are arising, Malaysia will have the best chance of escaping middle income trap.”
Amarjeet Singh (ASEAN & Malaysia Tax Leader, EY Malaysia) also returned from our Post Budget Conference last year to provide an updated analysis of the Budget 2020 from a tax perspective. The conference rounded up with an in-depth panel discussion between Professor Edmund Terrence Gomez (Professor of Political Economy, University of Malaya), Natasha Pheiffer (Managing Director Asia, BAE Systems), Yee Wing Peng (CEO, Deloitte Malaysia) and moderator Omar Mahmoud (Managing Director & Country Head of Global Banking, HSBC Malaysia) covered a variety of topics from SMEs and the US-China trade war to the importance of education and career building.