Malaysia’s Competitiveness Ranking: Badawi misleads himself, not us


29 January 2008

Prime Minister Abdullah’s claim that Malaysia is currently ranked 8th in the world in terms of competitiveness is deliberately misleading.

Closer examination of the data reveals that this is true only within the category of countries with a population of 20 million or more.

According to the full World Competitiveness Report 2007 as cited by the Prime Minister, Malaysia is in fact ranked only 23rd in the world. Fifteen of the twenty-two countries ranked above Malaysia in 2007 have populations of less than 20 million people, while seven of the twenty-two have populations exceeding 20 million.

Malaysia’s competitiveness ranking in 2006 was 22nd, and in 1997, it was 17th.

Prime Minister Abdullah’s decision to resort to such misdirection is a weak attempt to hide the fact that Malaysia’s economic fundamentals have weakened progressively under his government.

Malaysia’s competitiveness is plumetting and where once our economy stood shoulder to shoulder with countries like Singapore and Hong Kong, we are now ranked 23rd in the world, they are ranked 2nd and 3rd respectively.

Malaysia is clearly in need of a higher calibre of leadership if Malaysia is to realise its full potential as an economy of global stature.



I learned years ago at university that statistics (statistics in the hand of an incompetent politician, I mean) and lies have something in common and that is they are tools that be used to conceal reality. But if repeated often enough, they are taken to be the truth. In the hands of Prime Minister Badawi, they become one big joke. The Prime Minister’s attempt to make Malaysia look good under his leadership has failed again. It will continue to fail because he has no credibility left.

The breaking news is that he has launched yet another corridor, this time in Sabah, and that is his solution to all our problems. More corridors. It won’t work when he cannot even fix the rot in the judiciary. The Haidar Commission is going to be another huge letdown. The witnesses are not concerned about lying to their teeth even under oath—Din Merican

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