Malaysiakini News

Ringgit shines among export-oriented countries, PM claims

Bernama  |  Published:  |  Modified:

The ringgit has performed better than currencies of other large commodity exporter countries, despite it being painted as weak, said Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.

In a statement today titled "My Economic Vision for Malaysia," he said the ringgit would regain its strength and an appropriate market rate as the country’s economy continued to perform well.

He added that while it was true the ringgit had weakened amid the global economic turmoil and uncertainties since 2014, there were other positive aspects to this, with the country's exports and tourism booming.

Najib said he refused to conform to the old ways that had led to serious legacy problems, and firmly believed that Malaysia needed a new vision.

"Pegging the ringgit and re-imposing capital controls would have been the easiest thing for me to do.

“Having suffered from a lack of investments after we had imposed capital controls and pegged our ringgit from 1998 to 2005, we decided not to do it again," he added.

He said new initiatives and several major announcements would be revealed in the Budget 2018 to benefit all Malaysians.

"This budget will continue to be guided by my goal to correct the problems of the past and make Malaysia stronger, more competitive at home and abroad.

“It is to create a country that protects the vulnerable and is fair to all. This is alongside a Malaysia where none of our brothers and sisters are left behind," he added.

Najib said Malaysia must move onto the next phase of being a developed high-income nation where the standard of living and quality of life for Malaysians are the top priority.

"This is my vision for Malaysia, a cause that is much bigger than myself. Malaysia has always punched above our weight, and I believe in our tremendous potential as a country," he added.

He claimed that this potential had been recognised by many international institutions, such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

"These are the results of the economic plan this government put into place after I took office in 2009. The tough decisions we took were not always popular, but necessary, and spared Malaysia from the ravages of recession and turbulence that afflicted the global economy.

"We have acted as a responsible government, always seeking to protect our people and look after their welfare and security," Najib added.

- Bernama

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