Oxford Business Group Malaysia [VIDEO]

Oxford Business Group's Editorial Manager, Steven Dijkhuizen speaks on Bisnis Awani ahead of the Malaysia 2010 Report Launch.

The details of the recently-launched 10th Malaysia Plan (10MP), which maps out how the government plans to craft the country's economic transition from low to high income economy, are explored in detail in Oxford Business Group's new report.

The Report: Malaysia 2010, which was launched on 30 June 2010 at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, contains in-depth, up-to-date analysis of the government's plans to persuade investors to target advanced technology industry rather than low cost sectors and assume the role of facilitator rather than provider of economic change with the private sector taking centre stage as the principle catalyst for economic activity.

The launch of the global publishing, research and consultancy firm's new report was attended by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak, the architect of the 10MP, together with hundreds of other senior political figures, and key representatives from Malaysia's business scene.

With the government adopting the view that human capital rather than bricks and mortar will lift Malaysia out of the middle income trap, OBG's new report explores the challenges facing the education sector and the changes that will be needed to create a workforce capable of operating in a knowledge-based economy.

The Report: Malaysia 2010 also considers the implications that the New Economic Model will have on the local and international business communities and the key role it is expected to play in helping Malaysia achieve developed nation status by 2020. Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, voiced his confidence that the 10MP would be the catalyst for change, as the government prepared to downsize and reduce its direct role in economic activity. "The question revolves around how to move from a high middle income country to a high income country and that is where the 10MP will be quite different from others," he said. "This time around we are moving towards a smaller government, where we want to get the private sector, which should be the real engine of growth, to do the things that we are currently doing."

Tan Sri Nor voiced his support for OBG's report which, he said, not only contained a wide-ranging analysis of the 10MP, but also provided the global business community with a detailed guide to the investment opportunities that Malaysia offered. "As the country makes this significant economic transition, it is vital that we send a message saying Malaysia is open for business," he said. "I am confident that Oxford Business Group's new report, with its comprehensive exploration of Malaysia's economic activity and extensive data, will prove invaluable to business leaders, while raising the country's profile even higher on the international stage."

Dato' Wahid Omar, Maybank's CEO, added that the changes taking place in Malaysia's banking sector were paving the way for economic development. "The banks have coped well with the global downturn, thanks to their own preparedness, combined with prudent measures such as stimulus packages from the government, accommodative monetary policy from the Central Bank and a low interest rate environment," he said. "These, combined with the key developments on the horizon, such as the new liquidity framework, are positive signs for the changes ahead."

Paulius Kuncinas, OBG's Regional Director said that "The launch of the 10th Malaysia Plan is a major confidence booster for the foreign investor community. It sets out a clear vision as well as specific implementation milestones for how Malaysia will become one of the leading high income economies in the region. The focus on domestic private sector growth is likely to attract new international players in the financial and industrial services making the country a hub in a number of areas such as Islamic finance, biofuels, hospitality and advanced soft commodities. In all of these established segments Malaysia is likely to capture more added value as it extends the supply chain to include advanced technology-based services."

Laura Herrero, OBG's Country Director in Malaysia, agreed, saying that OBG's new report on Malaysia could not be more timely. "While based here for Oxford Business Group, I have been privileged to witness the government's determination to push forward with its programme of liberalisation and increase private sector involvement," she said. "Our reports have voiced optimism that these efforts would attract growing interest from international investors. As Malaysia takes on the challenge of accelerating its efforts towards a higher-income, knowledge-led economy, which we have documented for the global business community."