Nuffnang Add

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Election and economy – Lim Sue Goan

MAY 22, 2012
MAY 22 – The guessing game on election date continues. Lim Guan Eng says the European debt crisis could have played a decisive role on this, and as such the election most likely will fall in middle of July just before the Ramadan.
How serious is the European debt crisis? Hardly to pass down a verdict at this moment. Last week, the local bourse dipped 52 points and the RM56.4 billion of market capitalisation evaporated.
This hardly augurs well for the feel-good election atmosphere.
Greece will vote again on June 17, and the reelection is widely seen as a referendum on whether the Mediterranean country will stay or leave the Euro zone. If Greece opts to leave the Euro zone, the domino effect could likely bring down the single currency.
The destruction of this is going to be way more serious than the 2008 financial meltdown. As a trading nation, it is hard for Malaysia to be spared from the predicament.
As such, while weighing the impact of last month’s Bersih 3.0 rally, the scale of the European debt crisis must never be played down.
Whether the general election will be fixed in July or September will very much depend on PM Najib when he returns home. It will be ideal if he can wait until the June 17 Greek election outcome, but then we may not be able to make it before the Ramadan starts on July 19.
Further delays to the general election will not do the country any good. The continuous deployment of political tricks by rival parties will dent investor confidence while some companies will temporarily stall their commercial projects pending election results, thus checking economic growth.
The government will start implementing the minimum wage policy in another half a year’s time and if the economy remains sluggish, many SMEs will find themselves in doldrums in the absence of new government incentives.