Don’t focus on high income status

Don’t focus on high income status

PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad urged Malaysians to focus on ensuring that people’s pockets are filled instead of becoming a high income nation in his special address in conjuction with Pakatan Harapan’s first year as the federal government.

“High income does not mean luxury. The reality is even though GDP and revenue increase, the country’s wealth is not felt by the people because high income with an unchanged productivity level leads to an increase in the cost of goods, services and cost of living.

“High income alone won’t increase our purchasing power,” he said.

Mahathir said the economic model for the past decade had focussed on mega- projects that increased the country’s debt, as well as the creation of jobs that were largely low-skilled, with 70 percent falling into that category.

He added that equity control had also shifted towards foreign ownership, while economic development was only focussed on a few key cities.

“This was made worse with a plunge in integrity and spike in corruption as people followed the example of their past leaders. As a result, the government’s delivery to the people was ineffective and insincere, leading to widespread leakages and abuses.

“The past leaders also used the ‘bumiputera” name for personal interest and wealth,” he said.

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Dr Mahathir Mohamadhigh income status