Malaysia launches vision to curb ‘corruption, abuse of power’

Mahathir Muhamad
Updated 06 October 2019

Malaysia launches vision to curb ‘corruption, abuse of power’

  • Mahathir: We want to make sure economic opportunities and economic outcomes are distributed fairly to all Malaysians

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia unveiled a new national economic blueprint on Saturday as the country tackles its longstanding problems of corruption and economic inequality.

“We want to make sure economic opportunities and economic outcomes are distributed fairly to all Malaysians,” said Prime Minister Mahathir Muhamad.

The new plan, Shared Prosperity Vision 2030, is the continuation of a strategy that was launched by the 93-year-old leader 30 years ago.

Mahathir criticized the previous government for “liberalizing the country’s economy too soon,” and “relentlessly pursuing GDP (gross domestic product) and a high-income economy,” resulting in an overreliance on cheap, foreign labor.

“The effects of the economic structure over the past two decades have actually created inequality among the people, whether from income group, ethnicity, region or supply chain,” he said.

Some 40 percent of the country’s GDP is accumulated in the capital city, further widening the urban-rural gap.

To move in tandem with the global market, the vision focuses on growth in the future economy such as the Industrial Revolution 4.0 and the digital economy.

Mahathir expressed hope that with the new vision, Malaysia will become more competitive globally and have equitable growth.

“In this way, we will restore confidence in the market and in investors, and be able to position Malaysia as the new Asian Tiger,” he said.

Mahathir added that the new vision will “eliminate corruption and abuse of power,” and that his Cabinet has been meeting every month to address the issue.


Pakistani Umrah pilgrims affected by temporary ban to be compensated

Updated 28 February 2020

Pakistani Umrah pilgrims affected by temporary ban to be compensated

  • “Passengers who have Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) tickets will be able to get full refund from the PIA offices or their travel agents,” the airline’s spokesperson said
  • Saudi Arabia on Thursday placed a temporary ban on Umrah pilgrims to prevent the spread of coronavirus

ISLAMABAD: All Pakistani Umrah pilgrims affected by the temporary travel ban to the Kingdom due to the threat of coronavirus will be compensated, the Saudi Ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf bin Said Al-Malki said on Friday.
“Pakistani Umrah pilgrims who had to travel to Saudi Arabia during the dates of suspension will be compensated in the best possible way,” Al-Malki told Arab News on Friday. “They will be able to travel on the same visa or will be issued a fresh one free of charge.”
Saudi Arabia on Thursday placed a temporary ban on Umrah pilgrims to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
“Passengers who have Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) tickets will be able to get full refund from the PIA offices or their travel agents,” the airline’s spokesperson Abdullah Hafeez Khan told Arab News, adding that it was up to the passengers if they wanted to avail the refund option or get their seats readjusted after the ban.
Meanwhile, Saudi airlines also announced full refund of tickets through a circular which is available through Arab News.
“The Pakistani mission in Saudi Arabia is in touch with the Saudi authorities on this issue and will take all possible measures to facilitate Pakistani pilgrims,” Arshad Munir, spokesperson for the Pakistani Embassy in Saudi Arabia, told Arab News.
Faizan Akhtar, a member of Pakistan’s Umrah Travel Agents’ Association, said that the situation would become clear in the next few days, but all the passengers would get refunds or manage to travel on the same Umrah package after the ban.
“There was a previous incident of flight suspension during the Pakistani-Indian standoff last year which disturbed Umrah pilgrims. They were compensated by the Saudi authorities, who extended their visas without extra charges and airlines adjusted their seats accordingly. We haven’t received any official communication on this so far, but the situation will become clear in the next few days,” Akhtar said.