Daim: Previous Models to build BBC failed


March 31, 2011

Daim: Previous Models to build Bumiputera Business Class(BBC) Failed

by Aidila Razak@http://www.malaysiakini.com

Former finance minister Daim Zainuddin today defended the much-criticised New Economic Policy (NEP), but said that previous models used to build a bumiputera business class have failed.

Speaking to a full house audience at the sixth installment of the Universiti Tun Abdul Razak lecture series in Kuala Lumpur today, he said that in fact the NEP was a “noble effort” with logical goals.

Daim (right) said that when the country received its independence, the British policy of divide-and-rule had caused severe income and ethnic disparity which needed to be addressed through social engineering that was the New Economic Policy.

Ethnic economic aspiration become an important factor in economic development policies. NEP was to expand the economy and benefit all ethnic groups.

Malays and bumiputera (who make up about 60 percent of the population) are politically dominant. A political party not sensitive of this group cannot hope to rule the country.

“Some of the NEP exist elsewhere, in the United States it is called affirmative action… to assist the low-income group, the alleviation of poverty, to reduce regional imbalances. There is nothing wrong with eradicating poverty and reducing disparity.

“It is a noble effort and we shouldn’t be apologetic about it. It affects the whole society (regardless of ethnicity) either directly and indirectly,” he said, adding that poverty data today compared to the 1970s is evident of NEP’s partial success.

Daim, who last week broke his long silence in an interview with Mingguan Malaysia, added that when the government pursued the policy to award contracts to companies with part-bumiputera ownership, it was at a time when the community was still “weak” and had “no networks like the non-bumiputera” business community who had more experience.

“If (a project was awarded) to a bumiputera company, the bulk of work was given to a non-bumiputera company. There was still trickle down (and) no deprivation of the non-bumiputera (business class) in sharing in the spoils of development,” he said.

As evidence of this, he said, the bumiputera community has yet to achieve the 30 percent equity target set for 1990, and currently only holds 21.9 percent.  Additionally, he said, none of the top 10 companies in Bursa Malaysia are owned by bumiputera.

Need to develop a new model

All the same, he said that the old model of providing licences, subsidies and approved permits to the bumiputera in hopes of building entreprenuers had failed and is no longer sustainable given diminishing public funds.

“My main concern is the need to develop a new model (to build) Malays in business and entrepreneurship. In the past we have used licences, approved permits, financial support, etc, but has it brought about sustainable entrepreneurship? The answer is no… (and) it is no longer tenable. There is a need to have a Malay group that is more sustainable and less dependent on government support. This is an unfinished business,” he said in his speech.

Similarly, he said, Malay rights group PERKASA’s discontent with the New Economic Model shows a reluctance to let go of old inefficient models, which  are incompatible with market needs as well as the state of public funds.

Elaborating in the question-and-answer session, Daim said Malaysia’s small economy is facing greater liberalisation and Malays should not fear this as it is an opportunity to prepare themselves for competition.

“Have we achieved something for the Malays and the business community, yes, but when we do this there is still a gap. The only way is through education, with education you can stand on own feet. The government’s role is to provide education… and after that don’t come and say ‘I don’t have a job’.

‘I believe I am better than the Chinese’

“We have more Malay graduates now compared to the 1960s and 1970s and (still) you say we can’t compete, then there’s something wrong with us. I don’t believe that we are less intelligent than the Chinese… I believe I am better than the Chinese. You can say you’re clever but I say I’m cleverer [sic],” he said.

“PERKASA is looking at bumiputera interests, saying we cannot achieve 30 percent equity, blah, blah, but this is subject to debate and it is good that there is a debate so people understand… that (the government) is not depriving (Malays) of anything and if (the Malays) are good then (the government) will not stop (them) from being successful,” he said.

Amusing the audience, he said that politicians generally “don’t know nothing about the economy” and that “they only know how to spend money and please their voters”.

As such, he said that his advice is to “let them be politicians, not economists” and make sure that they have the right advisors.

The former politician, who has previously been nicknamed “Diam Daim” (Silent Daim) added that he is prepared to offer advice, but only if it is sought.  “I don’t want to be a busybody,” he said.

17 thoughts on “Daim: Previous Models to build BBC failed

  1. new model berlambak…tgk makcik n pakcik yg jual nasi lemak tepi jln…yg manja penuh cina tu….back them up….senang je beb!

  2. Daim can say all he wants. The fact is that he admitted building BBC in Malaysia has failed.

    That is enough to say that BN government has spent the last forty over years achieving little as far as BBC is concerned.

    Daim should realise that businesses are now borderless. Globalization has made our national economy porous. Going outside is the better way to grow.

    Businesseses in Malaysia are well linked to international activities, to grow. Malaysian Chinese businesses operate this way, and have been able to grow in spite of the many crisis and affirmative policies. The network of ethnic business associations around the world and in particularly East Asia, strenghten this particular way of operation with links to many strong nodes.

    Whereas the bumiputera (Malays particularly) who are hell-bent on their own indentity, strapped themselves to the behest of the Malaysian government policies. This forces their business to be confined to Malaysia.

    The overzealousness of Malay politicians gunning at the Malaysian Chinese business community is making it all wrong. Such overzealousness is creating internal economic anarchy. Malaysian Chinese business will exit Malaysia, when they see this plus crippling affirmative actions.

    When somebody goes into business, he goes for the world, not only Malaysia. The Malays business community should see themselves from fighting in a two corner fight to a multi-corner fight. The future battle is such.

    Malaysia’s international economic and political importance are not exactly darlings to the world powers nowadays. So, free handhouts and handholds from foreign countries are hard to come by.

    Gone are those days when certain rich and powerful countries came to invest in Malaysia so that a certain desired political structure was maintained, as part of their global security measures.

    The growth rate of Malaysia’s economy within its own political borders is limited, and idea for further growth needs to probe into international opportunities where there are big risks but no affirmative government policies.

    I hope this explains why affirmative actions in Malaysia has failed as indicated by the failure to build BBC.

  3. ..I belive I am better than the Chinese.. Good one Daim, but in what??. Nobody not even Mamak Octo can be better than you in plundering UMNO coffers, and benifiting from Govt. contracts. And of course you could also afford to throw RM 1 million in the 70’s to pay off a civil servant to divorce his wife, for you to marry her. DIAM DIAM, tapi terror !!!

  4. BBC? Apatu..
    Look the ye olde thalassocratic (maritime) nations of Majapahit and Sri Vijaya. They were the traders of renown!
    What this Diam Daim is saying is that the “Malays” (Constitutionally speaking) are too inbred to follow the footsteps of their ancestors.
    The standing joke being: “Malays Bling and Bang first, then realize that their borrowed capital has disappeared.”
    Datuk Din has always had a tiresome time trying to drill some fiduciary responsibility into these flurs..

  5. “NEP was to expand the economy and benefit all ethnic groups’ Daim

    Yes, the expanding economic pie analysis – which is nothing more than coded language for building a rich Malay capitalist class of which he himself is one. If there is one iota of truth in that statement, explain why after decades of this policy of entitlement, poverty among the rural poor (read: Malay poverty) is still very much an issue?

    We were told that the way out of the political instability of the late ’60s was to work to widen the Malay middle class. No society is ever stable with a thin layer of the middle class (read: Malay middle class). The Chinese were told they would benefit with the more equitable distribution of the economic pie. Their share of the economic pie need not contract on condition the national economic pie keeps expanding. For the Chinese business community, this works fine for them. Nothing could be worse than to have race riots when all you need is to be left alone to make money while the sun shines.

    Fast forward some four decades, what mostly happened is that a rich Malay capitalist class has taken over. Corruption and abuse of power is widespread and endemic. The moral fabric a society would need to hold itself together is being stretched to its limits.

    I wonder what the likes of the late Aziz Ishak and Boestamam, both committed socialists in the 60s, would say.

  6. ” Yes , the expanding the economic pie model – which is nothing more ………. explain why after decades of this policy of entitlement poverty among the rural poor is still very much an issue?” – bean.

    Bean ,

    I can offer you 2 possible answers :

    1. they use the money meant for the rural poor to produce and screen blue films ; and

    2. the NEP was not implemented the way it was originally intended .

  7. Daim knows why the BBC concept failed, but he does not want to embarrass the present Government and UMNO. But he is a realist to admit failure when he sees one. That is why he suggested new models of developing Malay entrepreneurs.

    I agree with him that the Malays, if they are not spoon-fed by the Government, can compete. He and I are of the same generation as we grew up in the 1960s and 1970s. All it takes is sheer hard work and focus.–Din Merican

  8. BBC could have succeeded if Daim and his boys had not hijacked the projects and distributed the loot among themselves. He was feeding his boys till they became too fat and greedy. Had he spread the bread and butter to a larger segment of Bumis there will be more BBC success to talk about.
    I billionaire failure wipes out 1000 million. Even at the rate of 40 % failure from a pool of 1000 millionaires the pie would still be 600 millionaires.
    Daim didn’t succeed in legal practice, then the salt factory and other businesses before Apanama gave him the keys to the Malaysian Treasury and thus began the raid by the 40 thieves. Now Daim Baba suddenly decide to say the BBC was a failure, it was a failure under his watch. So the blame rest squarely on his shoulders.

  9. ” How come the silent one has become very talkative of late ? ” – vsp

    Because the talkative one , Mr kutty, has absconded to his ranch in Argentina to bonk a few
    Argentinian ” horses ” , enjoy some argentinian wine and argentinian beef rendang.

  10. Amazing how things go on in this country. Diam daim and his partner mahathir literally took the country’s treasury to the cleaners . Everybody knows that .

    But here they are coming out of the woodwork, one by one, giving grand speeches as though as if they have not done anything wrong and nobody does nor says anything . Amazing to realise that these scumbags do still get invitations to give speeches in universities and they are even given an audience – even if they are students .

    Really amazing !

    It is

  11. Sdr Abu Nawas, very well said.
    Bercakap seperti bos beliau Maha Firaun lansung tidak ada penyesalan dan betul2 bangsat.
    He forgot the large number of Malay sub contractors yang jatuh bangkrap kerana penipuan dan kerakusan orang suruhan beliau Amin Shah semasa di Lumut Naval Dockyard yang diberi kontrak mebuat kapal Royal Malaysian Navy.
    Mereka2 ini betul2 merana kerana tidak dibayar dengan betul atas kerja2 mebaiki kapal RMN dan kita tahu Kem. Pertahan sudah selesai membayar kapada beliau.
    Kita boleh bayangkan berapa ramai ahli keluiarga yang menderita akibat dari kerakusan perangai buruk Amin Shah. Dosa mereka terlau besar untuk dimaafkan.
    Jadi jangan salahkan sub kontraktor2 Melayu yang konon nya tidak cekap dan bodoh.
    Oleh itu ‘culprit’ yang paling besar adalah orang seperti ini.
    Therefore, this sly and cunning shorty Daim better shut up and mohasabah diri.
    Cuma disini kita agak terkilan, kerana these scumbags as you describe get away it.
    Regards

  12. He can’t be honestly thinking that spoon-feeding will breed success before? He started that culture and I don’t think that’s reversible. Despite his plan’s failure, he and his band of merry-men is still rich.

  13. It was the mamak PM who intentionally spoonfeed the Malays, to make them hadicap for long long time to come, and he will be able to control the country for generations. His over 20years of iron fist rule has completely damaged the competitiveness of most Malays in our country. Look st those Malays from Singapore, who are able to compete in the international market. I alway believe that no one person/race is not capable to compete, it is the government and the environment that makes them.
    So if the Malays will to compete in the international market, then they will have to work very hard, like what most people do to be able to succeed. I sincerely hope that our country’s people, be it Malay, Chinese, Indian or any others, will rise up and compete in the global market, not fighting within the country for the ever strinking piece of cake.

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