Selangor Journal
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim speaks at the launch of the Madani Economy initiative at the Securities Commission Malaysia building in Kuala Lumpur on July 27, 2023. — Picture by BERNAMA

Experts: Madani Framework policymaking should be lead by Economy Ministry

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 10  — The Economy Ministry should lead the Madani Economy, the latest economic framework in designing the policies and have coordination with the relevant ministries that will implement them.

Malaysia University of Science and Technology (MUST) professor Geoffrey Williams said a new vision and mission under the Madani Economy framework requires fresh ideas, fresh eyes and a fresh approach under its Minister Rafizi Ramli which reports to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

“There is a need to open up policy space to new ideas and test policies through brainstorming and stakeholder engagement to check that they will work and reduce unintended consequences.

“The economists at the Economy Ministry can do that and no doubt they would enjoy a more pro-active approach to policy making and they will build their own internal capacity to do this.”

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Malaysian Inclusive Development and Advancement Institute (Minda-UKM) director Prof Tan Sri Noor Azlan Ghazali said the government must institutionalise the Madani Economy initiative immediately so that the implementation of each target and development programme can be realised simultaneously and quickly.

Noor Azlan said a dedicated team should be established to oversee the implementation of the Madani Economy, which requires joint action.

However, Williams highlighted that the government must not repeat the errors of the past by setting up teams of former and retired policy advisors to do things in the same old way.

As the framework has set seven key performance indicators as medium-term targets to be achieved within a period of 10 years, he said the team must set a clear implementation plan with reasonable timescales on how and when the targets are met.

The targets are Malaysia to rank among the 30 largest economies in the world, to achieve 12th position in the Global Competitiveness Index, and be in the top 25 of the world in the Human Development Index as well as in the Corruption Perception Index.

The other targets include raising the percentage of labour income to 45 per cent of the total income versus the 12th Malaysia Plan target of 40 per cent by 2025, growing the participation rate of women in the labour force to 60 per cent, and achieving fiscal sustainability with a fiscal deficit of three per cent or lower.

Putra Business School, Master of Business Administration programme director, Associate Professor Ahmed Razman Abdul Latiff agreed there is a need to form a team to oversee the implementation.

However, he said the team does not necessarily have to be built from scratch as the government has existing think tank organisations such as the Academy of Professors Malaysia and Minda-UKM to form such a team based on their research cluster groups.

“The advantage is that the team will be able to report on the progress, output and impact of Madani Economy so there will be more support and buy in from the people,” he said.

As the government aims to boost the Malaysian economy and improve quality of life, it needs to do the whole monetary reform in addressing the root cause of the problem and not just focus on the problems at the surface level, said Ahmed Razman.

— Bernama

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