KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will continue its business-friendly policies towards investors and, in the event of problems, will act as the engine of economic recovery to help the private sector grow.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi gave this assurance when he met representatives from the private sector and businessmen at separate functions here, yesterday.
Speaking at a Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) Hari Raya open house here, he told guests that his administration would maintain its policies to encourage foreign investors to remain committed to Malaysia.
“There will not be much changes. When problems occur, the Government will step in as the engine of economic recovery.
“It is a happy arrangement. But the Government wants to see the private sector lead the way and act as the engine of growth for the economy,” he said.
Abdullah said the Government would continue to ensure that the country remains peaceful and stable, adding that efforts were being carried out to improve the public service delivery system.
“Foreign companies will have to deal with the system at one time or another and the improvements in the system will affect them,” he said.
Turning to a visiting delegation from the Singapore Manufacturers’ Association, he said: “We hope that despite the problems we have, Singapore will remain committed to Malaysia.”
The group had earlier met International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz to discuss issues of trade between the two countries.
Rafidah, who hosted the open house, told reporters Malaysia would be attending a trade seminar next year in the republic to meet Singapore counterparts and promote various sectors.
“We have indicated to them that we have potential in information and communication technology (ICT) and biotechnology as well as other industries that require land,” she said, adding that the seminar would address a new generation of Singaporean businessmen.
Earlier in the day, in a keynote address at the Malaysia-India Business Forum at the Putra World Trade Centre, here, Abdullah also invited companies from India to invest in Malaysia in the ICT and biotechnology sectors.
The Prime Minister said the Indians had been actively involved in the ICT sector, with 56 firms with equity from India-based companies operating in the Multimedia Super Corridor.
He singled out Infosys chairman Narayana Murthy and Satyam Com-puter Services chairman Ramalinga Raju as “active and valuable members” of the MSC's International Advisory Panel.
Abdullah said many Indian software programmers were also providing their skills and talents to Malaysian IT companies, adding that such collaboration must be further encouraged.
On biotechnology, which he said was a relatively new area requiring large investments of funds and knowledge, Abdullah added: “Malaysia possesses the richest biodiversity on the planet. It is a gift, a competitive advantage that is God-given and we must find ways to harvest it to the best of our abilities.”
He said to improve the leverage on the country’s biodiversity, the Government started the BioValley project to conduct research on agro biotechnology, nutraceutics and pharmaceutics as well as genomics and molecular biology.
The business forum is part of a series of activities, including a trade exhibition and fashion show, to mark the Incredible India 2003 promotion this week.
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