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Monday, November 25, 2013

Najib checks up on Budget progress

Published: Sunday November 24, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM 
Updated: Sunday November 24, 2013 MYT 6:41:56 AM

IPOH: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak will chair a top brass meeting of ministers, secretaries-general and heads of government departments here next month to hear how they are dealing with the Budget 2014 policies and programmes.

Finance Minister II Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah said the premier wants to get details of projects under each ministry to get a clearer picture on their developments.

He said the discussions would touch on, among others, when the projects will start and be completed and problems that are liable to crop up. The meeting is due to be held on Dec 11.

“The Prime Minister is looking at the Budget implementation seriously to ensure proper execution.

“The move will enable international agencies to rate the Government’s measures to beef up the nation’s financial situation,” he said after visiting a proposed hawkers’ site at Chemor, near here, yesterday.

It was reported on Nov 21 that Ratings agency, Moodys Investors Service, had upgraded Malaysia’s sovereign credit outlook to “positive” from “stable”.

The ratings were driven by the improved prospects for fiscal consolidation and reform as well as continued macro-economic stability in the face of external headwinds brought on by price stability and a credible central bank.

Ahmad Husni said with the rationalisation of the subsidies and the announcement of the goods and services tax (GST), it had given a good perception on the country’s economy development, and thus the ratings improved.

“The government is serious in consolidating its finances,” he said, disagreeing with the Opposition’s view that the timing for the GST (due to be enforced in 2015) is not right and should only be enforced when the country reaches to the level of a high income nation.

Ahmad Husni said the country’s per capita income is at US$10,000 (RM32,120), and countries where their per capita income is less than US$1,000 (RM3,210) have also introduced the GST.

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