Re-examine need for FIC, MICCI urges government

  • Business
  • Tuesday, 22 Apr 2003

MALAYSIAN International Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Micci) has proposed to the government to re-examine the existence of the Foreign Investment Committee (FIC) as it seems to have outlived its role as the guardian of national interest.  

This is especially so since government bodies and ministries had been entrusted with the task of ensuring that local interests were safeguarded, it said in its memorandum. 

Micci said the FIC requirement merely added another layer of bureaucracy to the system and was perceived as another barrier to investing in Malaysia. 

Micci represents a large cross section of business interests of both domestic and national origin as well as foreign in- vestors who are active in the Malaysian economy. 

It has also suggested that PR status or even citizenship be given on a selective basis to highly-skilled knowledge workers, especially those specialised in areas required by the industries. 

“And to enhance business productivity, it is timely to introduce the concept of labour contractors to help facilitate and expedite the orderly movement of required labour in situations where there are short-term fluctuations in labour demand,” it said. 

Micci has also proposed that the Finance Ministry include sufficient money to pay for subsidies on petroleum products each year in the annual budget to reduce the need for a supplementary budget and minimise delays in the payment of subsidies to oil companies. 

On the validity of approved permits (APs) in the steel industry, Micci has suggested that Miti consider extending the validity of the permit for the import of steel from the current 3 months to 1 year, with multiple shipments allowed during the period of 1 year. 

On the issue of surplus in supply of cement, it was suggested that Miti should stop issuing new cement manufacturing licences so as not to aggravate further the current over-capacity situation. 

Micci also said Miti should revoke all licences issued earlier for companies that had yet to start operation. 

Micci said it was encouraging to note the extent to which the government had sought to adopt a proactive approach and the degree to which it had been open to new ideas. – Bernama 

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