Rich getting richer while poor getting poorer in Malaysia, says Anwar
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 1 — Malaysia faces a widening gap between wages and
the profits of companies under the government’s Economic Transformation
Programme (ETP), Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim warned today.
He told Parliament when debating the government’s Budget 2013 proposals
that not enough was being done by the Barisan Nasional (BN) government
to narrow the gap between the rich and the poor in Malaysia.
The opposition leader claimed household wages remain low and that
structured analyses show the rich getting richer and the poor getting
means the economic growth and all the projects announced by BN do not
bring effect on the incomes of a majority of the people,” Anwar(picture) said.
He added surveys showed 44.2 per cent of Malaysian households make less
than RM2,500 a month, and share only 14 per cent of the country’s
economic prosperity in stack contrast to the 50 per cent shared by the
top 20 per cent of wealthiest Malaysians.
“The excitement in chasing economic forecast numbers without specific
policy reforms to narrow the gap (between the rich and the poor) and
ensure even distribution is more evident than ever in the prime
minister’s ETP,” Anwar said.
“The analyses and comparisons in economic value made by the ETP projects
and wages given to workers show that by 2020 workers will be paid much
less in relation to company profit.
“If now, the ratio of wages to profits stands at 28 per cent, under the ETP it is expected to fall to 21 per cent,” he added.
Earlier, Anwar had said the national economic plan should shift from
only meeting equity targets and growth to ensuring a minimum household
income of RM4,000 a month by the end of a first-term Pakatan Rakyat (PR)
He also said economic growth should be generated by small and medium-sized businesses and not just by “one or two big bosses.”
Speaking in Parliament, the opposition leader pitched his PR’s Budget
2013 proposal to focus on disposal income instead of chasing equity and