2011 Election Budget

Typical example of long-on-rhetoric-lacking-in-details governance by sloganeering, from “Wawasan 2020” to “Work With Me” to “1Malaysia, Siti Inshah Diutamakan, BTN Didahukukan”

By Lee Wee Tak

The 2011 budget is definitely an election budget (tell me something we all don’t know).

If you look at the 2010 budget, after years of consecutive budget deficit, the Prime Minister in his maiden budget announced a reduction in total spending.

“Najib mentioned about expenditure would be decreased by 11.2%

A year later, he maintained the flip flop nature of his administration and proposed an increase of 2.8% instead, with a dismal 23% for investment/future while RM162.8 million or 77% for operating expenditure (i.e. just for day to day operations).

Is there a wavering of resolve to reduce national debt? Is this an allocation for maintaining the status quo or bringing about profound and fundamental changes that can benefit all?

From the enormous, ad-hoc and probably budget overrun causing spending spree in a series of by-elections, the cheque book administration reveals itself again. Get ready for a snap election!

Other commentators would have pointed the obvious like the sudden hike in payouts to civil servants etc. I am trying and hoping to write about the less obvious here.

The Sun provides a detail list of budget announcement here.


There is no fundamental structural change, obviously. Plenty of mega projects and for countless time, “private investment” or “private funding” is mentioned.

If you look at the existing modus operandi of “private investment” that we have Ahmad Zaki Berhad as the classic example.

It probably consist of 1) direct negotiation and award without calling for open tender and 2) the few good men (or the chosen ones).

The GLCs would probably get some bank loans and ultimately the frugal, the savings-conscious, retired and suffering Malaysians will bear the default risks arising from cost overruns, white elephants, delay in completion, continuous repair cost in the form of lower interest rates.

These bank loans to GLCs in substance another form of national debt; financed by our hard earned savings as well as the gap between the housing loan interest rates paid and the savings and fixed deposit rates received in return.

What caught my eyes too is this ambiguous statement:

* The implementation of the 12 National Key Economic Areas (NKEA) to generate investment exceeding RM1.3 trillion and create 3.3 million jobs

Sounds impressive until you look at it again:


In 1997-2001 Bill Clinton’s administration created 11.2 million jobs in the United States, worked out to be approximately 2.8 million jobs per annum for a population of close to 300 million


How Malaysia with a population of 27 million can take in another 3 million new jobs perplex me.

If 50% of Malaysians are working then that is about 13 million working Malaysians so where are we going to find additional 25% of that number…more foreign workers?

No, there is a statement here”* Govt will continue to reduce the number of foreign workers by increasing in stages the levy according to sector. “

Typical example of long-on-rhetoric-lacking-in-details governance by sloganeering, from “Wawasan 2020” to “Work With Me” to “1Malaysia, Siti Inshah Diutamakan, BTN Didahukukan”

Of course central to the effort to please the business community and rakyat is….

1. Reinvigorating private investment;

Privafe-public partnerships
* In 2011, private investment is estimated to expand 12.5% to RM86 billion

Without addressing the continuing deliberate provocative actions base on racial lines, from Shah Alam Cow Head incident, to church bombing, Perkasa, BTN, racists headmasters etc, by ignoring the concerns expressed candidly by foreign investment community (ask the DPM about his comment on PERC report), I wonder where would RM86 billion private investment will come from.

Read more at: http://wangsamajuformalaysia.blogspot.com/2010/10/2011-election-budget.html