PETALING JAYA: The mid-term review of the 11th Malaysia Plan was a missed opportunity for Pakatan Harapan to showcase its reforms, says MCA deputy president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.
Instead, the report was general, non-specific, superficial and full of empty rhetoric, he said.
“I had expected a major overhaul of the 11th Malaysia Plan, especially since the Pakatan Harapan government is so fond of criticising the policies and administration of the (former) Barisan Nasional government.
“The mid-term review should have been the perfect opportunity for (Prime Minister) Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his team to enlighten the opposition as well as the rakyat of their grand strategies to bolster national development.
“But we were simply presented with a rebranding and repackaging of previous initiatives, peppered with keywords synonymous with Pakatan Harapan such as reformasi (Reformation) and berhemat (financially prudent),” he said in a statement yesterday.
Dr Wee, who is also Ayer Hitam MP, criticised several parts of the review, including the government’s intention to embark on austerity measures.
“Pakatan Harapan has boasted about its aspirations to improve the financial position of the government, but its actions run counter to its own stated goals.
“For instance, the 11th Malaysia Plan had a budget deficit target of 0.6% of GDP by 2020, but this goal has now been postponed and replaced with a deficit target of 3% of GDP by 2020 despite the cancellation of mega projects such as the High Speed Rail,” he said.
Dr Wee added that the government failed to understand that cancellation of government projects would not only affect investor confidence, but would also ultimately hamper economic growth and affect government finances.
He also questioned the plan to empower small and medium enterprises, despite the government having halted operations of the Secretariat for the Advancement of Malaysian Entrepreneurs, as well as the announcement to implement a progressive tax levy for foreign workers.
“These are some of my observations today.
“I will pore through the mid-term review over the next few days and get ready for the debates in Parliament next week,” Dr Wee added.