Govt must consider liberalising M’sia’s oil, gas sector: Dr Chua

(The Star) – The Government should consider liberalising the Malaysia’s oil and gas sector for the country to achieve accelerated growth, said MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek on Saturday.

He said the Government should also allow more of non-Bumiputra investors to be joint-venture partners, contractors and sub-contractors in areas such as exploration, platform constructions, logistics, deep-sea operations and others.

“Our oil and gas sector has reached a stage in which we are already an established player in the global stage. Yet the opportunities for the SMEs are still small compared to other countries including non-oil producing nations like Singapore.

“Therefore, given the maturity of the sector, the opening up of the sector will boost the country’s GDP by many folds,” he said at MCA’s Chinese Economic Congress at the Prince Hotel here on Saturday.

He said the telecommunication sector also needed to be fully liberalised as increased competition benefitted operators and consumers.

Dr Chua encouraged more GLCs to open their Board of Directors to include more non-Bumiputras as well as international expertise.

“It is important that GLCs open up their procurement system to include competitive SMEs based on the quality of service and products offered. Rather than based on race or equity requirement,” he said.

Dr Chua also called for greater transparency in the tendering process as closed tender systems had always been associated with corruption and kickbacks.

“We hope all public procurement is open to all local SMEs and they are provided with equal access and opportunities,” he said.

He said the party also called for the execution of a minimum wage policy on a sectoral and regional basis to accelerate the process of reducing the reliance on foreign labour.