KUALA LUMPUR: The 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP), covering three development dimensions - economic empowerment, environmental sustainability and social re-engineering - will further crystallise the implementation of the Shared Prosperity Vision 2030 (SPV2030).
The SPV2030 - unlike the National Economic Policy (NEP), which is a policy prescription - is a new initiative providing a 10-year development roadmap and framework for the country’s economic restructuring to benefit all Malaysians, regardless of race and ethnicity.
Measures and courses of action to achieve the SPV2030 goals would be incorporated in the 12MP, which is expected to be tabled in Parliament in the third quarter of this year.
However, the SPV2030, which emphasises equal opportunities for all Malaysians, has sparked concerns among bumiputras - would their interests and rights still be protected?
On the other hand, some quarters are questioning Pakatan Harapan’s earlier promise of equal rights when affirmative action is said to be implemented.
Adviser to the Economic Affairs Minister, Datuk Khalid Jaafar, emphasised that the SPV2030 was no way a race-based policy but a needs-based one aimed at narrowing the economic gap in the context of income, irrespective of race.
To say that the SPV2030 is a rehash of the NEP, with a similar emphasis on race-based bumiputra policies, was a misconception, he said.
“I think they are mistaken and did not read the full document. The objectives of the SPV2030 include narrowing the income gap between the classes, races, areas and also value chains.
“This is aimed at promoting social justice and sharing the nation’s prosperity. I think this accusation is based merely on prejudice, ” said Khalid.
He also dismissed concerns that the SPV would be hijacked by the rich bumiputras, emphasising that the SPV would instead reduce the economic gap between ethnic groups.
To make sure that the SPV2030’s goals and objectives are included in the 12MP, Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali in an Economic Affairs Ministry (MEA) report card said the ministry had conducted 390 engagement sessions with various parties in the preparation of the plan.
He noted that 2019 was a productive year for the MEA towards building a strong foundation for implementing the national development agenda to formulate a policy that gives the optimum impact.
Meanwhile, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia geostrategist, associate professor Dr Azmi Hassan, said there were glaring differences between the NEP and SPV in terms of policies, as they were formulated in different eras.
Azmi noted that the SPV strategies were not based on a particular race, as the basic strategies within the policy tried to narrow the income gap between the B40 and M40 groups, as well as slash the inter-ethnic gap.
“The SPV2030 is to bridge the gap between the B40 and M40 groups in terms of income, ” he said, adding that the bumiputra factor would come into play, as they made up the majority of the households in the B40 income group. - Bernama