Companies without track record signed MoUs in China, says Johari

(FMT) – A Barisan Nasional (BN) MP has called on the government to explain how companies without a proper track record were allowed to sign memoranda of understanding (MOUs) with Chinese corporations during Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim’s visit there recently.

In the Dewan Rakyat today, Johari Ghani (BN-Titiwangsa) asked the investment trade and industry ministry (Miti) and the Malaysian investment development authority (Mida) to explain the screening process which saw such companies selected.

“Recently, the prime minister visited China and witnessed the signing of 19 MoUs between local and Chinese companies worth around RM170 billion.

“My question is whether Miti and Mida had screened the companies involved before the signing ceremony.

“From what I have observed, several companies do not appear to have a track record worthy of collaborating with an economic giant like China, the world’s second largest economy,” Johari said in his supplementary question.

He also asked how Miti will ensure that the RM170 billion investment will benefit Malaysians across the board.

In his reply, deputy investment trade and industry minister Liew Chin Tong (PH-Iskandar Puteri) said all companies involved had gone through a stringent screening process, with Mida also conducting the necessary background checks.

“The government is driven by its new investment policy that involves five criteria.

“The criteria for accepting foreign investors and any other form of investment are that it must increase our economic sustainability and generate high income jobs.

“It must also create new economic clusters and increase (economic inclusiveness), while expanding the domestic (economic) network. This is our dashboard to monitor what sort of investments we receive,” he said.