Three pledges for bumis

New govt plan to tackle employment, land and food-growing tech

AFFORDABLE haemodialysis treatment and care for senior citizens are among services that will be included in a national endowment (waqaf) to help low-income bumiputra, says Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

He said the endowment will also be used to help bumiputra youth gain access to education and training for technical skills.

The endowment is among the three main pledges in the government’s new economic agenda for the community that was unveiled at the Bumiputra Economic Congress 2024 here yesterday.

Another initiative that is part of the administration’s Bumiputra Economic Transformation (TEB) is a specific entity to increase ownership and manage bumiputra lands, Ahmad Zahid said.

He added that about 20% of all agricultural land larger than 50 acres (about 20ha) or industrial plots bigger than 20 acres (8ha) will be returned to the government once the leases for these properties are up for renewal.

This proportion will then be handed over to be managed by the bumiputra land corporation.

Setting the course: Delegates visiting stalls set up on the sidelines of the congress in Putrajaya. — RAJA FAISAL HISHAN/The StarSetting the course: Delegates visiting stalls set up on the sidelines of the congress in Putrajaya. — RAJA FAISAL HISHAN/The Star

Ahmad Zahid said that the third pledge involved efforts to increase bumiputra participation in the industrialisation of the food-growing sector, which would improve the country’s food security.

“I am confident that these three pledges will be part of our efforts in this congress that I think can boost the bumiputra empowerment agenda in a decade,” he said in his keynote address.

The TEB is a continuation of the agenda to uplift the socioeconomic status of the bumiputra community that was started in the 1960s and is part of the unity government’s over-arching Madani Economic Framework.

The three pledges form a part of the TEB’s main components which include three goals and six commitments.

The first goal, termed socioeconomic justice, was to ensure the community was not left behind others in terms of professional, educational and commercial achievements, Ahmad Zahid said.

Currently, only 29% of bumiputra are classified as skilled workers, he added.

The TEB’s second aim is to increase the ability of bumiputra businesses to be dynamic and adapt to a new era of diverse challenges such as geopolitical conflicts, pandemics and climate change disruptions.

“We should not just be dependent on the domestic market but go out to the world market, estimated to be worth US$5 trillion (RM23 trillion) by 2030,” he added.

The TEB’s third goal is to ensure that the agenda results in national prosperity because when the community does well, everyone benefits, he said, noting that bumiputras form over 70% of Malaysia’s population.

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