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COMMENT | A pioneer’s passing: Sharing the wisdom of late Ramesh
COMMENT | Last month, one of Malaysia’s pioneer generations passed on. Kuantan-born Ramesh Chander was Malaysia’s first chief statistician at the age of 28.

He lived a rich and meaningful life until the age of 88. In his career, he helped to build Malaysia’s statistical foundation notably with the 1970 census and shaped the New Economic Policy (NEP).

At the World Bank from 1977 through 1996, Ramesh (above) was pivotal in creating the World Development Indicators, national account systems and measures of living standards.

Known for his statistical contributions, what is less appreciated is his deep commitment to Malaysia as a development economist. Through engagement, knowledge-sharing (often inter-generational) and the occasional commentary, Ramesh worked to strengthen Malaysia’s economy, pushing for needed reforms.

He was a cherished friend and mentor. In the weeks before his passing, we met as we often did over two-plus decades to discuss and debate. The subject of the day was...

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